Huntington Beach

Charter panel approved, 4-3

HUNTINGTON BEACH Mayor Tony Strickland will chair the council ad hoc charter review committee.

A divided Huntington Beach City Council voted Tuesday night to form an ad hoc council committee to recommend proposed changes to the city charter.

The vote was split along familiar lines, with Mayor Tony Strickland Mayor Pro Tem Gracey Van Der Mark and Councilmembers Pat Burns and Casey McKeon in favor, with Councilmembers Rhonda Bolton, Dan Kalmick and Natalie Moser opposed.

Burns suggested the creation of the committee, to consist of Strickland and two council colleagues of his choosing. The recommendations would need to come back to the council in time to make the deadline to appear on the March 5, 2024 primary election ballot.

Also on Tuesday night, the council voted 7-0 to continue a public hearing on adoption of the municipal budget to the June 20 meeting. City staff told the council that while the budget was balanced for the next two years, a deficit is projected for 2024-25 or 2025-26. Due to that, the city manager was directed to find cost reductions that would offset the predicted red ink.

Connected to that was introduction of a memorandum of understanding between the city and the Police Officers Association, covering July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2025.

The deal includes 5 percent raises for each of the three years of the agreement.

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