On The City Council Agenda – June 3, 2014

sex offender squadA tough issue facing the Tustin City Council Tuesday will be the repeal of the majority of its local sex offender ordinances. As you may have read, the California Appeals Court has struck down most local sex offender laws and both Irvine and Orange have repealed their ordinances. Tustin is following suit by repealing that part of the ordinance that prohibits sex offenders from entering city parks.

Don’t worry, your children are safe. The ordinances in question were rather far reaching and unnecessarily built upon state law which already effectively limited sex offenders from entering parks and schools without permission. At the time, the city jumped on the Republican bandwagon to enact mostly superfluous laws. The appeals court simply put the onus back on the state (where it should be) to enact appropriate laws and get rid of the checkerboard of (sometimes) confusing local ordinances. Police will still be able to do their job without the perceived rights violations that could potentially occur. Yup, I hate to say it, sex offenders have rights, too.

Tustin police will also be able to enforce the residency restrictions of state law as well.

Before tackling the regular business of the day, however, the city council will meet to discuss the proposed budget for  the coming fiscal year. This budget workshop will convene at 4 pm in city council chambers and the public is invited to comment and discuss the proposals. I am still looking through the documents myself. The summary gives a flat, conservative picture of the city’s approach to finance. At the outset, I would simply ask them to take a closer look at items they purchased out of the reserve fund last year and ensure like items are budgeted for. The reserve should stop being used as a slush fund for pet projects. You can see the proposed budget here.

Back under Regular Business, the city council will consider a proposal by the Community Development Department to increase the budget for a consultant by $100,000. The purpose is to develop a downtown commercial core plan. The council previously approved more than $60,000 for the study. In publishing the RFP, they apparently discovered consultants aren’t cheap.

We still believe the study could best be done by city planners with perhaps a minimum of outside help. Unfortunately, City Manager Jeff Parker and Community Development Director Elizabeth Binsack are intent on maintaining the Republican cant to privatization, even for projects where it is obvious city planners have an advantage.

The last item of Regular Business is one close to my own heart. Item 15, Consideration of Supporting Assembly Bill 1453 – Orange County Veterans Cemetery. Through the history of the El Toro and Tustin Marine air bases, our city has a long history of serving veterans. The closest veterans cemetery is Riverside National Cemetery near March Air Force Base.

Sharon Quirk-Silva’s Assembly Bill 1453 would authorize the construction of a state veterans cemetery in Orange County. The latest proposal would place a veterans cemetery on El Toro property, a situation faced by an unenthusiastic Irvine City Council who have gone as far as to hire a Feng Shiu consultant. Apparently, cemeteries are not consistent with a Feng Shui lifestyle.

Anyway, it took awhile but Tustin city fathers must have read my blog asking for support for Silva’s bill. Yes, this deserves discussion as to where it will be located. But, we owe it to our veterans to give them a final resting place in their own county.

Special Meeting – 4:00 pm

Workshop on proposed budget for fiscal year 2014-2015.

Closed Session – 5:30 pm

Conference with Legal Counsel – 2 items each of initiation and exposure to litigation

Liability Claim – Maria Teresa Dunn Clam No. 14-02

Conference with Real Property Negotiators – TUSD

Regular City Council Meeting – 7:00 pm

Presentations

Student Government Day 2014 – Ethan Banks, Amy Coulter, Olivia Bancroft, Alison Greenberg

“Everyday Hero” – Jim Carson, Orangewood Children’s Foundation

Public Hearing

Annual Levying of Assessments – Tustin Landscape and Lighting District for Fiscal Year 2014-15

Consent Calendar

Review City Conflict of Interest Code – City Manager

Call for Election – November 4, 2014 – 2 council positions

Approve Grants of Easements Southern California Edison over portions of roadways and parcels of Tustin Legacy properties.

Regular Business

Request for Appropriation – Downtown Commercial Core Plan, Consutant fees and agreements. Additional funds requested.

Exclusive Sales Listing Agreement – CBRE Inc. for Tusting Legacy Area 4

Repeal of Sex Offender Ordinance – Repeals certain sections of city code to conform with recent court of appeals decisions.

Consideration for Support of Assembly Bill 1453 and Reaffirming Support for Proposition 13 – Resolutions to support Sharon Quirk-Silva’s proposal to establish a veterans cemetery in Orange County. Second resolution would reaffirm city support of Prop 13.

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