Huntington Beach

Study of unfunded city projects approved

HUNTINGTON BEACH will be studying its infrastructure needs, the city council decided Monday.

Is the City of Huntington Beach doing enough to make sure its facilities are keeping pace with the passage of time and the growth of the community?

At Monday’s meeting of the city council, a proposal by Councilman Mike Posey to study deferred maintenance and projects and come back with a report on such, was approved on a 6-0 vote with Mayor Erik Peterson absent.

The city’s public works department recently reported there is $140 million in deferred projects. “I believe that it would be prudent for the city council to have the opportunity to have a deeper look into all of the capital projects on the public works’ list that are needed to enhance and maintain the city’s infrastructure,” according to Posey.

What the council approved was directing the city manager to work with the public works director and city engineer to organize a study session within 90 days on the unfunded projects. The city charter requires that 15 percent of the city’s annual spending be on buildings and other infrastructure.

“A well-maintained city is one of the best economic development tools … to attract businesses and reduce crime,” according to Posey.

Also, Interim City Manager Dave Kiff reported that the city “continues to monitor” mitigation efforts by the state Department of Toxic Substance Control about efforts to cleanup the Ascon Landfill site at the southwest corner of Magnolia Street and Hamilton Avenue, near Edison High School.

The Ascon site, operated as a landfill “dump” from 1938 to 1984, receiving waste from local oil drilling and later, construction debris. Odors from the site have raised concerns by nearby residents and parents of students at Edison about air quality.

Preliminary testing indicate that the air at EHS is within state safety standards, but that more comprehensive testing was underway with a report due this week.

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