Council adjusts documents to add Sunset

The Huntington Beach City Council on Monday night approved amendments to its maps, general plan and zoning to include Sunset Beach, and added provisions to prohibit marijuana dispensaries and to require short-term vacation rentals to complete the permitting process.

The council unanimously adopted changes to the general plan, local coastal plan, zoning text and zoning map. Mayor Pro Tem Jill Hardy and Councilmen Joe Carchio and Gil Coerper were absent.

The 134-acre unincorporated area of about 1,300 residents was placed under Huntington's sphere of influence last year by the Orange County Local Agency Formation Commission, which oversees the process of municipal boundary changes. The move was intended to decrease the number of Orange County "islands," the generally small, unincorporated areas that were hard to service.

The council voted Aug. 2 to proceed with the annexation of Sunset Beach, the city's northern neighbor along Pacific Coast Highway.

The city has for the most part kept land use consistent with the county's designations and added a few changes based on community input, Planning Manager Mary Beth Broeren said.

Huntington Beach has added marijuana dispensaries to the list of prohibited uses in the community and will require all short-term vacation rentals to get a conditional use permit.

The community also requested the city recognize it beach encroachments and maintain the greenbelt.

The city will also keep open the Oakview Police Substation, which was axed in the recent round of budget cuts.

The substation, 17473 Beach Blvd., was slated to close after being eliminated in the 2010-11 fiscal budget, which was approved in late September.

The substation property owner has agreed to lease the 1,250-square-foot building to the city for $1 a year for five years.

The property was originally leased to the city for $1; but in 2005, the city began paying about $1,500 a month.

In other news, the council accepted $30,000 in grants to buy new breathing apparatuses for the Fire Department.

The firefighters' air packs are nearing their 14-year lifespan. The Fireman's Fund Insurance Co. Heritage Grant Program and the Robert Mayer Corporation, a real estate group, each gave $15,000 toward replacing the equipment.

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