On the Agenda

Here’s a rundown of the main issues we’ll be tracking this week throughout Orange County.

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Irvine School Site Disclosures

As Irvine school board members gear up to build a high school near a toxic landfill, Councilman Larry Agran is calling for more public disclosure of health risks and traffic impacts.

The proposed location, known as Site A, will cost nearly $300 million to build and lies less than 1,000 feet from a World War II-era toxic waste dump, according to a memo Agran wrote requesting the release of information.

Agran is also asking his council colleagues to waive attorney-client privilege and make public a memo from Robert Thornton, a special counsel to the city, about the high school site.

The memo, Agran wrote, addresses “the nature and extent of publicly documented toxic contamination” at nearby landfills. “And potential City liability in the event that Irvine’s new high school is located at Site A and adverse health effects (possibly even ‘cancer clusters’) are later associated with toxins and carcinogens emanating from” the nearby landfill sites.

The meeting starts Tuesday at 4 p.m.

Ballot Measure for School Site?

Also at Agran’s request, council members are set to decide on placing an “advisory measure” on the June 3 ballot for voters to weigh in on the school site.

“The location of a nearly $300 million new high school is a major land-use decision with health, safety, and quality of life implications for generations to come,” Agran wrote in a memo.

“Citizen engagement, citizen debate, and a citizen advisory vote on these matters could prove to be valuable in building genuine consensus regarding the best location for Irvine’s next high school.”

The high school measure would coincide with a special election to replace Gavin Huntley-Fenner, an Irvine Unified School District board member who recently resigned.

New Great Park Environmental Analysis

With a new vision for the Great Park approved by Irvine City Council members, the city is now set to start the process of determining the environmental impacts of the new plan.

The changes include adding a massive sports park and an 18-hole golf course, along with a smaller canyon than envisioned in the original master plan.

Up for approval on Tuesday is about $360,000 for consultants to conduct environmental and traffic analyses for the new master plan.

The construction giant AECOM would prepare the environmental analysis at a cost of $135,000. LSA Associates would handle the traffic analysis for $225,510.

Click here for the staff report.

Garden Grove Holds Off on Parking Lot Deal

After an outcry from the Garden Grove Neighborhood Association, city management is suggesting that a public outreach process take place before deciding what to do with a city-owned parking lot.

The lot, which is owned by the city’s housing authority, is located at the corner of Grove Avenue and Acacia Parkway.

A development company run by Steve Sheldon recently announced that it had an exclusive deal to develop the property into housing, prompting the neighborhood association to cry foul.

“In light of where we are at in the Re:Imagine [public engagement] visioning process, it would be prudent for the city to cease further discussions regarding the Grove Avenue parking lot until completion of this process,” a city staff report states.

“It is important that the many creative thoughts and ideas for improving the City’s downtown be gathered and evaluated before considering new development projects that could affect the area.”

The meeting starts Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

Major Meetings This Week:

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

See something interesting in the agendas? Let us know!

Adam Elmahrek contributed to this post.

You can reach Nick Gerda at ngerda@gmail.com, and follow him on Twitter: @nicholasgerda.

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