Hats off tonight to David DeBerry, city attorney, for saving the taxpayers a lot of money!
Tonight, at the 7 PM session, council was hearing an appeal from a sober living house that was not granted the variance it was seeking and needed to continue to operate. Â The attorney who represents the sober living house (and many others including those in Newport Beach!) could not make it tonight because he is in a trial in Washington, DC.
The sober living folks asked for a continuance. Â Jon Dumitru wanted to have the hearing anyway. Â David DeBerry explained the due process issues and that if you don’t Â make a good faith effort to follow due process as a governing body, then you are setting yourself up for more problems down the road. And the opportunity to really spend taxpayer dollars.
I can remember when Cafe Lucca in Old Towne asked for a continuance. And got it. Â And I remember when a continuance was granted because Steven Ambriz had to go to an Angel game.Â
So, just because you don’t like the issue doesn’t mean you don’t give the parties their day in front of the council. Â If you don’t like them, it’s even more important they get their hearing.
Final vote was Carolyn Cavecche, Mark Murphy, Tita Smith (all who pointed out that this has happened before) to grant a continuance (one time only!) to March 24 and Denis Bilodeau and Jon Dumitru against.
Guys, please, be smart about your battles. Â Yes, I know many people in the audience will have to come back (or they can write a letter/email – Mary Murphy the clerk is fantastic at getting issue based emails/letters/phone calls into the records for public hearings). Â But another hearing is Â CHEAPERÂ Â than a legal battle with the sober living folks because they didn’t get due process.