The announcement could trigger the city pulling out of the cemetery debate altogether, writing off nearly a decade’s worth of work by advocates on both sides of the debate.
A state study will compare the projected costs of two potential sites in Irvine, but state veterans affairs officials acknowledge that because of the political conflicts over the two sites it remains unclear what happens next in the process.
After approving construction following eight years of discussion, the council is now disagreeing over whether to start construction or turn the land over to the state.
After over seven years of debate, the body could choose to begin the process of preparing a veterans cemetery without confirmed state financial backing.
The state senate’s Veteran Affairs chair is looking to examine multiple sites for the cemetery weeks after the Irvine City Council chose a location.
The Irvine council approved the initiative without sending it to the ballot and can now search for funding, but the city attorney raised concerns that the initiative is not binding.
After verification by county election officials, the council could decide to approve the initiative tonight or send it to the November ballot.
Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva announced Tuesday she will amend her legislation to include a proposed golf course that could be the home Orange County’s first veterans cemetery after a five-month battle between state Legislators and Irvine City Councilmembers.
Irvine Mayor Christina Shea told residents at a private townhall meeting July 18 that the golf course site was a diversion so the state doesn’t force the veterans cemetery at the original site. But she said, on Wednesday, she was talking about diverting the residents’ anger over the original site.
The Irvine City Council picked a planned golf course within the Great Park as the future home of the state-run veterans cemetery, but a state bill looking to name another site conflicts with Irvine’s decision.