Henn to give Newport State of the City address

Newport Beach Mayor Mike Henn will speak on the city's current and future priorities at the 30th annual Mayor's Dinner on Friday night.

The event at the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa, organized by Speak Up Newport will again feature Daily Pilot columnist Peter Buffa as the emcee.

Henn, who was recently handed the mayor's gavel by Councilman Keith Curry, said he will divide his comments between current and future priorities.

However, the overall emphasis will be on the need for "generational planning to benefit all future generations of Newport residents," he said.

While the City Council has recently identified five items as generational priorities, Henn will only address four: revitalization of the city's older or neglected areas, the John Wayne Airport settlement extension, tidelands management and pension reform.

"We need to have an organized, planned effort for the revitalization of certain parts of the city," Henn said.

He cited the completion of the first revitalization phase for Lido Marina Village.

But Mariner's Mile is an area "that's been neglected, not necessarily by the city … but for whatever reason needs revitalization and has needed revitalization for a long time," Henn said.

Henn also singled out Balboa Village and said there may be other areas that will come under scrutiny.

The fifth issue, about the restructuring of city government, will be addressed on Feb 22., Henn said.

Restructuring has the potential to "significantly change the culture and structure of the city in the future, and make a leaner, nimbler government in the future that is responsive to needs of the city," Henn said.

Video of the event and Henn's speech will be available on NBTV online and replayed on Channel 3 in about a week.

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