Council to meet tonight

Rebecca Neipp

News Review Staff Writer

Appointments of positions on the Ridgecrest City Council and Planning Commission, as well as updates on the city’s budget and strategic plan, will be on tonight’s agenda for the council meeting, scheduled for 6 p.m. at City Hall.

The first action item will be adoption of a resolution officially appointing Steven Morgan as the newest member of the council. Morgan was sworn in last month after the council interviewed several candidates to replace Jason Patin, who resigned in August.

Morgan’s placement on the council leaves an opening on the commission. Members of the council are scheduled to nominate and vote on potential candidates to take Morgan’s seat on the commission. According to a staff report, since Morgan was originally nominated by Mayor Dan Clark, the municipal code authorizes him to nominate a replacement for the vacancy. The term is due to expire in November 2014.

The only other discussion items on the agenda are an update on the budget for this fiscal year, which will be presented by Finance Director Rachelle McQuiston, and the city’s strategic plan for 2013-14, which will be presented by City Manager Dennis Speer.

Consent calendar items include resolutions authorizing notice of completion on improvement projects for Downs Street, approval of a professional services agreement for a new traffic signal at Upjohn Avenue and China Lake Boulevard, acceptance of funding for a transit authority grant and a proclamation honoring Constitution Week.

The public is invited to attend. A complete agenda packet is available on the city’s website at

The public session will be preceded by a closed session with the council and City Attorney Keith Lemieux, who will be briefing the members about two cases of existing litigation, as well as two liability claims against the city. The existing litigants are listed as William Dale Howard and Eva Balfour. Claimants are Carolyn Shields and former City Manager Kurt Wilson, who left the city in 2012 to take a position in Shafter.

Story First Published: 2013-10-01