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Newport aviation consultant’s contract up for renewal

American Airlines flight prepares to land
An American Airlines jet prepares to land at John Wayne Airport. The Newport Beach City Council will consider adding a year to its contract with lawyer and former mayor Tom Edwards as a consultant for the city on airport issues.
(File Photo)

Newport Beach will consider extending the contract for its aviation consultant as the city continues to respond to operational changes at John Wayne Airport.

City staff has asked the City Council to add a year, worth up to $85,000, to Tom Edwards’ contract when the council meets Tuesday. Edwards has been Newport’s airport consultant since 2008.

Edwards, an attorney who also was the city’s mayor in 1998, helped negotiate a settlement agreement with John Wayne Airport in 1985 that established a flight curfew and limits on noise and the number of passengers and departures. In addition to following up on general community concerns and keeping up with aviation business and regulatory trends, Edwards’ work focuses on the continuing effects of recently adjusted departure paths over Newport Beach and changes underway in JWA’s general aviation program.

The terms of Edwards’ contract would stay the same: $5,000 per month for the first 25 hours of work, with additional work billed at $300 an hour with approval by the city manager’s office. The new contract would allow him an average of about seven hours of “overtime” per month.

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The council meeting will start at 4 p.m. with a study session, followed by the regular session at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 100 Civic Center Drive.


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