Incumbents Diane Dixon and Kevin Muldoon are staying on the Newport Beach City Council after Tuesday’s election gave them new four-year terms, but member Scott Peotter was defeated and Marshall “Duffy” Duffield was trailing.
Dixon in District 1 and Muldoon in District 4 easily won their races, but Joy Brenner defeated Peotter in District 6 and Tim Stoaks held a 230-vote advantage over Duffield, the current mayor, with all precincts reporting.
Each district had a two-person race, with Districts 3 and 6 the hardest-fought as challengers attempted to change the makeup of the seven-member council.
Here are the election standings early Wednesday:
District 1: Dixon defeated software development company owner Mike Glenn with 60% of the vote. District 1 covers the Balboa Peninsula and Lido Isle.
District 3: Stoaks, an architect and planner, has 12,002 votes, or 50.5%, vs. Duffield’s 11,772. District 3 includes Dover Shores and Santa Ana Heights.
District 4: Muldoon defeated city Parks, Beaches & Recreation Commissioner Roy Englebrecht with 67.2% of the vote. District 4 includes Eastbluff and Big Canyon.
District 6: Brenner, a community activist and former parks commissioner, beat Peotter with 57.4% of the vote. District 6 includes Corona del Mar.
Candidates generally agreed that Newport’s most pressing issues include fiscal discipline, with special attention to paying down unfunded pension liabilities; development and traffic management; and the effects of John Wayne Airport on local neighborhoods.
In March this year, then-City Manager Dave Kiff announced his intent to leave in August instead of in spring 2019, as previously planned. Kiff’s supporters accused four members of the City Council — Duffield, Peotter, Muldoon and Mayor Pro Tem Will O’Neill, who is not up for reelection this year — of secretly conspiring to oust the popular Kiff. All four of the council members denied that, as did Kiff.
Over the spring and summer, local council critics filed a string of lawsuits and other complaints against the city or certain council members about campaign finances, the Kiff matter, possible conflicts of interest and what resident-submitted statements should be included in an official informational pamphlet about local ballot initiative Measure T.