city council district   v corona del mar & newport coast

Nancy Gardner 

councilwoman  v  newport beach, california


december UPDATE




We are in the final stages of formulating an ordinance to address the overconcentration of group homes in the city. We are trying to craft something that will alleviate the problem and stand up in court, not an easy task when recovering addicts are classed as handicapped, 6-and-under licensed homes must be treated no differently than any other single family residence, etc. Some residents are unhappy with what is proposed and apparently are contemplating bringing a lawsuit against the City for not adopting a ďDamn the torpedoes, full speed aheadĒ approach.

Because we continue to be shortchanged on federal funding, there is a concern that the Upper Bay restoration project will run out of money before the job is complete. To pull the equipment out and come back later will add at least one million dollars to the cost of the project. At a recent meeting of the Newport Bay Executive Committee, the City proposed that before letting that happen, the watershed participants put up the necessary money to finish the job under our agreed apportionment (County, 28.25%; TIC, 23.61%; Newport, 16.53%, Irvine, 17.48%; Tustin, 7.28%; Lake Forest, 6.85%). This was not greeted with delirious enthusiasm by the others, but at least itís on the table if we continue to come up short.

To be pedestrian-oriented, as CdM wishes to be, you have to be able to get from one side of the street to the other. Those who have used the crosswalk at Iris know just how perilous this can be with downhill traffic and the general disinclination of motorists to stop. In the ďCity of Newport Beach Improving Pedestrian Circulation Along Coast Highway in Corona del Mar Final ReportĒ (catchy title, what?), the traffic engineers proposed a traffic signal as the safest option. This set off alarms among those living on the ocean side of Iris. Already impacted by traffic from the Albertsonís shopping center, they feared that a signal would bring even more cars as people started using Iris instead of Marguerite to turn left onto Coast Highway. The solution: a pedestrian-operated signal, right-turn only, with an improved highway median to insure that cars canít turn left.



There is a great deal of interest in the proposed move of Paniniís restaurant from its current location to the former site of the Orient Handel rug store. Any restaurant would be happy to have the strong customer backing that Paniniís enjoys. Council members have received numerous emails from people who donít understand why there could be any controversy over a restaurant moving one block, especially one that doesnít have a hard liquor license, closes at ten and has a lot of pedestrian traffic as opposed to vehicle traffic. Nearby residents, however, already coexisting with six eating establishments in a two-block area, are concerned that the change from a rug store to a restaurant will negatively impact an area already buffeted by parking needs of employees, customers and deliveries.  Since use permits run with the land, not with the establishment, Council has to consider the potential addition of another restaurant in Paniniís current site and its impact, as well. The matter has been continued at Paniniís request until next year.


A number of years ago, the City wanted to clean out a lot of the vegetation in Buck Gully as a fire prevention measure. This met with strong opposition from residents, and a compromise was reached that meant a less restrictive fuel modification policy in Buck Gully, but even the less restrictive standards are not always met. At a recent study session, the Fire Marshal indicated that before the recent fires, there were thirty properties on Buck Gully that were not in compliance with fuel modification requirements. The message got out, however, and after the fires, there were only four. Council has asked the Marshal to take a fresh look at the Buck Gully requirements and come back with any proposals he feels would make the area safer. Meanwhile, it was good to learn that in Newport Coast, the community associations were all in compliance with their fuel modification requirements.

Even if I donít agree with what they say, I admire people who stand up and say it. There has always been a newspaper policy that people have to sign their names to letters if they want them published. Editors realize that people feel much freer to let fly if they are cloaked in anonymity, as opposed to standing fully identified with their statements. I wish the Daily Pilot would extend the same policy to the quotes it prints from bloggers.





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This is a two-way process, so please donít hesitate to contact me with your ideas and opinions.




Councilwoman Nancy Gardner



City of Newport Beach - 3300 Newport Blvd - Newport Beach, CA  92663

Phone:  949.644.3004    -    EMAIL:

Copyright  2007   v  Nancy Gardner    v   All Rights Reserved

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