By Jill Cowan
7:10 PM PST, December 7, 2012
Under the undulating roof of its not-quite-finished Civic Center off Avocado Avenue, the Newport Beach City Council will be sworn in for a new term Tuesday night.
At the meeting — scheduled for 6:30 p.m., rather than the usual 7 p.m. — the council will also elect Newport's mayor and mayor pro tem for 2013 and officially certify its election results.
According to a staff report, a total of 47,279 ballots were cast in Newport Beach. A little more than half of those, or 25,738, were cast early or by mail.
Newport's Measure EE, which made a series of amendments to the city's charter, passed by a wide margin.
Outgoing councilman Steve Rosansky will receive an unknown parting gift, and councilman-elect Tony Petros, who ran unopposed for Rosansky's spot in November, will take a seat on the dais.
Mayor Nancy Gardner will continue to serve on the council but will no longer sit in the center seat.
But while there may be a little fanfare Tuesday, the city in an email reminded residents that the meeting will not serve as the Civic Center's grand opening.
Only the Council Chambers will be open. Much of the rest of the grounds, which will include a park and other amenities, are still an active construction site. The email said seating will be limited to 150 people, plus seats on a covered patio outside the chambers.
Airport area decision
In other business, the council will hold a public hearing to discuss the possibility of overruling an Oct. 18 Airport Land Use Commission finding on the Uptown Newport project, a mixed-use development proposed for a 20-acre site near Jamboree Road and MacArthur Boulevard.
According to a city staff report, the commission found plans for the project to be "inconsistent" with John Wayne Airport's Airport Environs Land Use Plans, which is designed to ensure that cities aren't harmed by the airport, and that developments don't tangle with airport operations.
The council may vote to notify the commission and the state of its intention to overrule the commission's finding. Then, after a comment period, and after another public hearing, the city could choose to override the commission's decision.
Before Tuesday's regular meeting, at 4 p.m. the council will hold a continuation of a special meeting to vote on a rent increase for residential piers on city-administered, state-owned tidelands.
The meeting was originally slated to be held at the Civic Center, but will instead take place in the city's 3300 Newport Blvd. chambers.