Council study sessions pushed back one hour

The Huntington Beach City Council will start its meetings later in the day to accommodate one council member's work hours.

Councilwoman Connie Boardman, who teaches biology and chairs the department at Cerritos College in Norwalk, asked that the first nine study sessions and council meetings of the year be moved back by one hour. Boardman said cuts in her department have led to changes in her schedule.

Councilman Keith Bohr suggested the council move the study session back by one hour and leave the council meeting at its 6 p.m. start time by hurrying through the closed-session items, which he said doesn't usually take long.

The council voted unanimously for Bohr's recommendation.

Former Mayor Dave Sullivan said the changes are fiscally irresponsible because staff would be working late and therefore be getting paid for overtime.

"You knew the situation when you decided to run for council, and I don't think it's very fair for you to expect everybody else to change to fit your schedule," Sullivan said.

City Manager Fred Wilson said most of the staff attending the meetings are salary employees.

Boardman said moving her class up by one hour would prolong students' graduation because it would conflict with prerequisite classes the students must fulfill before taking her class.

Boardman's request would have made the Monday council meetings start at 7 p.m., instead of 6 p.m..

The study session meetings will start at 5 p.m. now until May 2, according to a city staff report. The meetings would go back to the 4 p.m. May 16 through the end of the year, City Clerk Joan Flynn said.

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