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April 14, 2008
The first of three disaster planning workshops this month will be Tuesday, Newport Beach fire officials said. The two-hour workshops focus on the city’s newly completed Hazard Mitigation Plan — the city’s strategy for preparing for unexpected disasters, both natural and man-made. The plan outlines what the city needs to do to protect the city and what they would do should disaster strike. All residents who live or work in Newport Beach are invited to the workshops.
By Allan L. Roeder | October 21, 2007
If you’re a Costa Mesa homeowner like I am, getting around to home repairs and improvement projects often falls somewhere behind work, grocery shopping, walking the dogs, vacuuming the house and probably about 100 other things we do in our daily life. Unless it’s a crisis like a plugged toilet, broken gas line or the electrical outlet next to the television set on Super Bowl weekend, it’s easy to set aside needed repairs and maintenance. Costa Mesa officials are offering an incentive for us “I’ll get to it next month” types as well as those who are always on top of their repairs and the latest home improvement.
February 19, 2008
Time Warner representatives will be on hand at the City Council meeting Tuesday night, responding to concerns expressed by residents during a January meeting. Time Warner, the city’s sole provider of cable services, as well as a provider of broadband Internet access and telephone services, has been unpopular with many Costa Mesa residents who say their service and support is sub par. Time Warner became the city’s cable provider in 2006, when it consolidated customers from Adelphia and Comcast.
By Alan Blank | August 15, 2009
The leaders of the union representing Costa Mesa’s firefighters fired back at critics of its new contract, saying that increasing pension benefits is in the city’s best interest, not the firefighters’. As part of the city’s recent deal with the union, firefighters will be able to retire with 3% of their annual pay for every year they worked starting at age 50, instead of age 55, which it used to be. For instance, a firefighter who starts at age 20 can now retire at age 50, after 30 years of service, and get 90% of his or her pay (the maximum allowed)
By Mona Shadia | February 10, 2010
Costa Mesa City Manager Allan Roeder on Tuesday unveiled a preliminary set of recommendations for spending cuts aimed at closing a projected $9.3-million budget gap. His recommendations include a freeze on filling job vacancies, except for police patrol and sworn firefighter positions; freezing all capital outlay purchases and capital improvement projects; and a freeze on new programs or services, expansion of existing programs and services, as...
By Mona Shadia | April 12, 2010
The Costa Mesa City Council’s move to form an Orange County Fairgrounds subcommittee during Tuesday’s closed session might have violated the state’s open meeting laws, a critic with knowledge of California meetings laws said. “They should have created the subcommittee in open session because that decision wouldn’t reveal the price and terms of the transaction,” said First Amendment Coalition Executive Director Peter Scheer, an expert on the state’s open-meeting laws.
By BYRON DE ARAKAL | December 25, 2007
That zephyr that just blew through here was 2007. It’s gone. Finis. Kaput. Years these days are like teenagers. They have no attention span, and they hang around just long enough to clear out the ice box and empty your wallet. Sigh. So as we send away the two-thousand and seventh year of our Lord to wherever it is consumed time ends up, we stop to noodle on what the next 12 months are likely to deliver to Costa Mesa’s front porch. From where we sit, we’ll sum up the coming year’s programming in one word: Politics.
By Hannah Fry and This post has been corrected, as noted below. | April 17, 2014
The Costa Mesa Senior Center has retained an attorney to guide its board through financial negotiations aimed at keeping the troubled organization afloat. City officials and four of the 11 senior center board members began discussing the possibility of the city taking over the independent, nonprofit center's finances after budget problems were revealed in an audit published by the city in January. The audit predicted the nonprofit's organization's general fund would run dry by June.
By Bradley Zint | April 17, 2014
The Costa Mesa City Council this week delayed a vote on a luxury apartment complex in a predominantly commercial area near John Wayne Airport. Before Tuesday's meeting, city staff and the developer of the proposed 240-unit complex at 125 E. Baker St. agreed that the matter should be postponed. The council unanimously complied, and the vote was tentatively scheduled for May 6. Peter Naghavi, a former Costa Mesa administrator who is representing the developer, Irvine-based Red Oak Investments, said some minor inconsistencies were found in the final environmental impact report, which the council was set to consider.
By Jeremiah Dobruck | April 11, 2014
A former U.S. solicitor general who has argued dozens of prominent cases before the Supreme Court has agreed to represent Newport Beach in its bid for judicial intervention in the city's years-long legal battle with sober-living homes. The city this week hired attorney Theodore Olson, whose credits include Bush vs. Gore and Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission. Newport Beach will pay Olson $280,000 to petition the high court to review a case that opened the city up to discrimination lawsuits based on a zoning ordinance that pushed out dozens of group homes for recovering addicts.
By Emily Foxhall | April 10, 2014
When the expensive new civic center opened in Newport Beach last year, some claimed it as a symbol of an irresponsible government out of touch with the people it represented. Councilman Keith Curry served as mayor at the time. He has embraced the project, which ultimately cost the city nearly $140 million, as an example of quality work that will meet the needs of the community for decades to come. He noted that the project is more than just a City Hall; it comprises a library, park, emergency center, community room and parking structure.
By Anh Do | April 9, 2014
Confronted with nearly 600 protesters upset over a proposal to join Irvine in "friendship" with city of Nha Trang in Vietnam, Irvine City Council members Tuesday night voted to revise their rules for choosing cities to be friends with. After more than five hours of debate, the council voted 3 to 2 to draw up new criteria  for forming "friendship city" ties. The new rules would exclude municipalities in countries that do not respect human rights or democratic values. They also chose not to enter into "friendship city" relationships with Karachi, Pakistan, or Baoji, China.
By Bradley Zint | April 8, 2014
It's known among government types as the Santa Ana/Colleen Island, but to most passersby, it looks like another one of the tidy and tony neighborhoods scattered about Costa Mesa's Eastside or Newport Beach's Back Bay. But technically speaking, it's neither. The nearly 14-acre parcel - composed of 51 single-family homes and about 150 residents, most on Colleen Place and Vista Baya - is an unincorporated parcel of Orange County bordered by Costa Mesa and Newport. Though for most practical purposes, it's Costa Mesa.
By Emily Foxhall and This post has been corrected, as noted below. | April 7, 2014
The Newport Beach Bay Station Post Office is seeking a change of address. Located on Riverside Drive near West Coast Highway, the post office loses its lease Nov. 9, and the landlord has declined to negotiate a new one, U.S. Postal Service officials said. The lease includes two locations in the Mariner's Center, said Richard Maher, a Post Office spokesman. One is a stand-alone building where post office boxes are housed. The other, in the corner of the shopping center, includes P.O. boxes and a counter where customers can buy stamps, envelopes and boxes.
By Bradley Zint | April 7, 2014
Proponents of allowing medical marijuana businesses to operate in Costa Mesa have taken their case to City Hall in the hopes of bringing the issue before city voters this November. Organizers characterize their ARRO Initiative, or Act to Restrict and Regulate the Operation of Medical Marijuana Businesses, as a "conservative approach" that provides "dignified access" to medical marijuana for users, as allowed by the voter-approved Compassionate Use Act of 1996. Furthermore, it would help clarify discrepancies between California's cannabis law and the federal government's stance on the issue, said the initiative's author, attorney Randall Longwith.
By Anh Do | April 7, 2014
Of all the places in the world, why did Larry Agran have to choose Vietnam? That's what local Vietnamese Americans wondered after learning that the longtime Irvine councilman hoped to forge a relationship between the master-planned community and Nha Trang, a southern coastal city in Vietnam known for its beaches and scuba diving. To many who fled the country after it fell to communist forces, Agran's proposal seemed designed to cause hurt, and hundreds indicated they planned to confront Agran on Tuesday, when he was expected to propose that Irvine and Nha Trang form a "friendship city" relationship.
By Emily Foxhall and By Emily Foxhall | April 5, 2014
The old Newport Beach council chambers, which have sat largely vacant for more than a year, came to life once again on a recent Sunday. Mayor Rush Hill was not present to call the meeting to order. The voting buttons on the dais - "yes", "no" and "abs" - went unused. About 5 p.m., two hours earlier than a City Council meeting usually starts, attendees began filing into the rows of auditorium-style chairs. But they didn't pick up copies of council agendas as they entered, nor did they come prepared with notes for public comment.
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