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An Interesting Time...

July 12, 2018

Chaos continues to be the state of affairs in the City of Newport Beach as opposed to the Rule of Law and community representation! 


No news to give you on the hiring of a new city manager. 


City staff morale at its all time low due to mistrust of the council majority. Peotter assigned to the Finance Committee insuring that his dangerous and expensive “ideas” previously dismissed by the Finance Committee will be brought back again and again. 


The Council moved forward in placing an amendment to our City Charter on the ballot this November requiring a vote of the people for long-term lease obligation financing. At the meeting, Peotter actually told the Finance Committee, and its member Larry Tucker, (my appointee), “Tough Crap,” for not advancing his idea to require a vote on lease obligation debt (Certificates of Participation).


I was the only “No” vote in my attempt to cast a vote reflective of the hundreds of e-mails I received from individuals throughout the city in opposition to the approval of this proposal. Two days later the Finance Committee actually did consider his proposal and declined to support it. 


The council was not really concerned with the specifics, only that they now have a ballot measure campaign that will allow fundraising outside of our city campaign limits.  


Ongoing election cheating in our city, beginning with the failure of our city attorney to enforce campaign contribution laws in 2014, 2016, and 2018, the now defunct Election Law Revision ad hoc Committee formed by then Mayor Muldoon in 2017 to deal with election reform, the unnecessary subpoenas issued in relation to the recall effort, efforts to undermine the Museum House petition drive, an attempt to keep me off the ballot in 2016, all contribute to this long-term state of chaos.


I just hope you are keeping a watchful eye on all of this, and if not, will begin to be more aware of the manipulation and corruption taking place within our city government.  It’s time for this to end and get back to the business of running our city.  Exercise your right to express your dissatisfaction this coming November at the ballot box!  I am out enthusiastically  campaigning for candidates Joy Brenner and Tim Stoaks to replace Scott Peotter and Duffy Duffield respectfully.  We can form a new council majority and get back to the business of running our city in an honest and open manner while at the same time insuring that the community is truly represented at city hall. 


Aviation Update


Impacts to our quality of life?  Let’s talk about John Wayne Airport for a minute.  Someday, planes will be a lot quieter and/or they will take off nearly straight up.  But until that time comes, please don’t be complacent about JWA.  Thanks to the work of SPON/AirFair in the early 1980’s, they sued in an attempt to stop JWA’s expansion.  That lawsuit resulted in the landmark 1985 JWA Settlement Agreement, which still stands today - and is unique across the country.  This Agreement sets in place the all-important curfew, a cap on the number of passengers that can fly out per year, and a cap on the “loudest” flights that can go out on an average day.  All of these important elements are subject to that Agreement’s survival.


As I look to the future, and reflect on the tremendous amount of work that is currently taking place, I am concerned about potential unexpected attacks on the l985 Settlement Agreement as the next negotiations phase arrives (2027), and what happens after that.  Our community has only succeeded in limiting the impacts of JWA when we have worked together.  Not neighborhood by neighborhood, but as an entire city.  For the work ahead, our success rate will improve if we all stick together.  That means having some sympathy for those right under the flight paths, including realizing how those paths have changed over time.  And if you are not under the flight path, it means making sure that you still stay engaged with the larger community to make sure that JWA remains an airport that doesn’t overwhelm us.  The current efforts of AWG, SPON/AirFair, and CAANP (three different community groups) to stick together as we work on our latest JWA challenge (NextGen implementation) is an excellent example of this sticking together effort. 


Soon you will be receiving via US Mail an important newsletter from the City giving you a thorough update on what is being done by the City and the three community groups named above.  This is an attempt to re-educate the community about the Settlement Agreement and then moving forward to today.  It’s a 4-pager, but so very important that you read every word, and even more important that you refer it to friends.  By doing so you will help to make sure that no one gets complacent about an airport that will continue to effect our quality of life.


As always, I remain at your service and hope that these occasional blogs are serving their purpose in terms of keeping you informed about matters that have a direct effect on you.


Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions, observations, concerns…..the best part of my responsibilities is helping out individual constituents!



Jeff Herdman

Newport Beach City Council - District 5



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