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Newport Beach

Volume 6, Issue 95  | November 26, 2021


Fair Game

By TOM JOHNSON

Is it right or wrong drinking wine at City Council meeting?

Fair Game Toms new headshotCue the Jaws theme music!

The sharks are circling in Newport Beach, and the intended target is City Councilmember Noah Blom. Over the recent months, there have been multiple accusations against Blom on wrongdoings, but none of them have gained much traction.

But now the Council is just weeks away from electing a new mayor, and Noah’s name is being associated with the City’s number two role, Mayor Pro Tem. Word on the street is he has the four votes to get it, and, quite frankly, some people don’t like it.

The fact is a form letter is being circulated by former Newport Beach City Councilman Jeff Herdman attacking Blom and urging people to personalize it and then send it back into their city council representative. 

Good idea about the form letter possibly, but the date listed on it of the City’s “organizational meeting” is wrong and Noah’s name is misspelled throughout. So, everyone utilizing the letter shows that it’s a pre-determined, concerted effort, in my mind lessening its impact.

The latest charge against Blom is that he’s been drinking wine at the dais during city council meetings. And although proof came in the way of a cup removed from his trash receptacle following the most recent council meeting that still had wine remaining in it, I called Blom to get his side of the story.

Noah, are you drinking at council meetings or not?

He, without hesitation, said, “Yes, I often enjoy a glass of wine at the dais during a city council meeting. Do I apologize for it, no. I never apologize for who I am. And if people want to talk with me about my conduct, then fine I’m happy to do so with them.”

Blom said he asked City Attorney Aaron Harp if that consumption was against any rule or law, and he said that Harp told him it was “frowned upon.”

But Noah then added that people frown upon the fact he doesn’t wear a tie to council meetings and he’s still not willing to do so.

So, what about drinking at a council meeting Mayor Brad Avery? “As elected councilmembers, we have an obligation to, at all times, conduct ourselves in a manner which demonstrates respect for our community and the office we hold.”

The question then, is drinking wine during a city council meeting conducting oneself in a manner demonstrating respect for the community?

Without putting words in anyone’s mouth, if that answer is “no,” then the follow-up question would seem to be, because he admits to doing so in the recent past, should that preclude him from becoming Mayor Pro Tem?

It’s really up to you the residents. If you’re fine with it, okay. If you’re not, then what should be done?

I’m awaiting your answers at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We’ll package them up and share them in upcoming issues leading up to the December 14th vote?

• • •

Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris is Chair of the California State Assembly’s Select Committee of the Orange County Oil Spill. So, when the report of a new sheen in the ocean came about over the weekend, all eyes were cast upon Petrie-Norris.

“You have may have seen that a new oil sheen was spotted near the site of last month’s spill on Saturday,” said Petrie-Norris. “Authorities have determined that the sheen was the result of a small leak in the damaged section of pipeline and may have been released when divers replaced the protective wrapping that is being used to seal the pipeline. This leak was contained on Sunday and the sheen has since dissipated.”

Sounds of a collective “sigh.”

• • •

I was remiss in not telling you about the new Happy Hour and Taco & Trivia Tuesdays now happening at Mutt’s Eastbluff.

Owner’s Alex and Meghan Murray are first off doing Taco Tuesdays, with $3.50 Street Tacos and specials on beer and Margaritas. But then beginning at 7 p.m., the restaurant transforms into Trivia Tuesday Night. 

“Each week, guests of all ages are welcome to compete and put their knowledge to the test for a chance to win one of three gift card prizes: 1st Place ($150), 2nd Place ($100) and 3rd Place ($75). Reservations for Trivia Night are highly recommended and can us made by calling 949.719.0635.

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