Newly sworn 3rd District Supervisor and 2014 District Attorney candidate Todd Spitzer landed an Orange Grove column in the Register this morning: A new chapter in Great Park saga. With a somewhat conciliatory tone compared to his justifiably angry monolog at last week’s Irvine City Council meeting, he commends the new Council/Park Board majority for taking control of the Great Park’s mega-issues and financial problems from the Gang of Two (don’t miss this great OC Weekly column by R. Scott Moxley on Larry Agran and consort-in-corruption Beth Krom).
Today’s OC Register interview with newly elected Great Park Chairman Jeff Lalloway was expectedly vague as he’s been at the job for only days, but we’re struck that he did mention the A-word. As we’ve been posting, there’s also no money left — only $20-30 million out of $220 million — it was squandered by past management with the approval of the old Irvine Council/Park Board majority. Of the remaining funds, a “forensic audit” must also be paid.
Kimberly Peirceall writes about Mr. Lalloway:
What he doesn’t want, he assures, is an airport. He says ripping up the former El Toro Marine base’s runways would go a long way toward alleviating any fears from county and Irvine residents that an airport is even an option anymore. Continue reading
After last week’s drama in Irvine — watching City Council scoundrels Agran and Krom find out (something like the California GOP) what the minority feels like after all those years on top — it’s evident that the Great Park still isn’t a done deal. Park Board Chair/Irvine Councilman Jeff Lalloway, an admired and respected local pol, has an impossible task ahead of him — to pay for the damn thing. So far, it’s been a monumental failure. Continue reading
“On a night when there was little if any consensus among two factions of Irvine’s City Council, the last vote at 1:34 a.m. Wednesday was unanimous – all five council members voted in favor of seeking proposals from auditors to take a closer look at the Great Park’s books since 2005, a motion made by returning Councilwoman Christina Shea,” according to the O.C. Register.
“A newly elected City Council majority voted 3 to 2 to terminate contracts with two firms that had been paid a combined $1.1 million a year for consulting, lobbying, marketing and public relations. One of those firms — Forde & Mollrich public relations — has been paid $12.4 million since county voters approved the Great Park plan in 2002,” according to the L.A. Times.
We’ve been waiting all day for an R. Scott Moxley column on the Great Park meeting last night (there’s no better expert on Larry Agran than Moxley), but he’s busy skewering the DA — instead we’ll settle for Register columnist Frank Mikadeit’s piece earlier this evening: Great Park reform starts swiftly; bloody.
Both the OC Register and LA Times/Daily Pile have stories today about tomorrow’s sure-to-be-exciting Irvine City Council meeting. We can’t wait — watching Larry Agran and Beth Krom finally take in the shorts is as fun as local politics ever gets.
The new Council majority, Lalloway, Shea and Choi, will surely vote to audit the Great Park’s finances, cancel $1.1 million in sole-sourced Forde & Mollrich and Townsend PR contracts and, best of all, eliminate the four outside crony Board members — leaving just the five member Council as all that’s left of it. Once might ask, since the papers didn’t, why there’s any longer any need at all for the Board if it’s effectively absorbed into the Council. Continue reading