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Airport Hot Issue in Council Race

October 30, 1998|STEVE CARNEY

Because John Wayne Airport sits in Newport Beach's backyard, the debate over a proposed El Toro airport is the biggest issue in the City Council races.

But one candidate opposes a commercial airport at the El Toro Marine Corps Air Station when it closes next year. Ron Winship, running for the District 4 seat being vacated by Mayor Thomas C. Edwards, suggests a compromise that would shift all private plane and cargo traffic to an El Toro airport and keep passenger traffic at John Wayne.

"South County would embrace that in a minute," Winship said. "We have to join and kiss and make up. It's a regional choice."

But his opponent for the seat representing Eastbluff and Dover Shores, Gary Adams, said Newport Beach should continue its leadership in supporting a commercial airport at El Toro.

"The obstacle is to continue to do that without looking selfish," Adams said. "John Wayne is maxed out. Now it's time for South County to step up and take their share of the load."

And Leonard Miller, a candidate for the District 1 seat Councilman John W. Hedges is vacating, said that if the defeat of an El Toro airport leads to a John Wayne expansion, "the residential area of Newport Beach would be devastated."

"The opportunity of this fantastic gift from the federal government--it would be ludicrous not to take advantage of it," and build an El Toro airport, he said.

The other issue candidates have stressed is the dire need for infrastructure repairs and improvements in the city. Work on streets, storm drains, street lights and other items was delayed during recent city fiscal crises, including the Orange County bankruptcy.

"We deferred maintenance, and unfortunately that's a tough thing, because it starts to catch up with you," said Michael Kranzley, also a District 1 candidate. "We've really let some things go."

He added that the city should find additional sources of money, public and private, to pay for needed work.

Tod Ridgeway, the third candidate vying for the District 1 seat representing the Balboa Peninsula, said moving utility lines from overhead to underground should be high on the city's list of infrastructure projects.

"In order to make this a world-class city, we need to encourage undergrounding of utilities," he said.

Two City Council members are running unopposed--Norma Glover in District 3 (Mariners Mile/Newport Heights) and Dennis D. O'Neil in District 6 (Corona del Mar).

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

Newport Beach City Council

Here are the candidates seeking four seats on the Newport Beach City Council in Tuesday's election. Norma Glover and Dennis D. O'Neil are running unopposed in Districts 3 (Mariners Mile/Newport Heights) and 6 (Corona del Mar), respectively:

DISTRICT 1

(Balboa Peninsula--one seat)

Michael Kranzley

Age: 46

Occupation: Stockbroker

Background: Bachelor's degree in political science, Miami (Ohio) University; Newport Beach planning commissioner; president, Lido Sands Homeowners Assn.; member, Traffic Phasing Ordinance Committee, Zoning Code Update Steering Committee, Balboa Peninsula Planning Advisory Committee and Newport Elementary BEACONS

Issues: Says city should continue support for airport at El Toro and negotiate extension of John Wayne Airport noise-reduction agreement; revitalize struggling neighborhoods, such as Balboa Village; tackle neglected infrastructure maintenance and find additional public and private funding for repairs

*

Leonard Miller

Age: 69

Occupation: Insurance broker

Background: Bachelor's degree in business administration, San Jose State University; member, Harbor Quality Committee; former Tustin councilman; founder, UC Irvine Medical Research and Education Society

Issues: Favors airport at El Toro, but more because Orange County needs world access than because of local noise problem; opposes Irvine Ranch Water District practice of releasing treated sewer water into harbor; advocates work on infrastructure repairs and improvements, including road maintenance and placement of utility lines underground

*

Tod Ridgeway

Age: 53

Occupation: Asset manager

Background: Bachelor's degree in real estate, USC; law degree, Loyola Marymount University; Newport Beach planning commissioner; member, West Newport Advisory Committee and Irvine Terrace Homeowners Assn.; founding member, Newport Elementary Foundation; chairman, California Business Properties Assn.; governmental affairs chairman, International Council of Shopping Centers

Issues: Tackle infrastructure repairs and improvements, such as road maintenance and placement of utilities underground; continue support for airport at El Toro; balance business and residential concerns while getting control of traffic within the city

DISTRICT 4

(Eastbluff/Dover Shores--one seat)

Gary Adams

Age: 43

Occupation: Transportation engineer

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