Orange County Great Park May be Renamed “Irvine Great Park”

Mayor Farrah Khan and Councilmember Mike Carroll requested that an item be placed on the July 13, 2021 City Council Supplemental Agenda to change the name of the Orange County Great Park to “Irvine Great Park.” (3.4)

The Great Park name change may be ceremonial in nature to reflect the fact that there is no County level jurisdiction over the park, but this agenda item brings up a number of issues:

  1. Irvine City Council Lacks JurisdictionThe Great Park is a corporate entity with a Board of Directors. The name change is a Great Park Board decision and this item must be documented on the Great Park Board meeting records. Therefore, the appropriate jurisdiction to make to discuss and decide on this name change is the Great Park Board, not the Irvine City Council.
  2. No Staff Report and Key Supporting DocumentsThis agenda item should have a staff report and supporting documents showing the updated Orange County Articles of Incorporation and updated Bylaws of the Orange County Great Park Corporation. No staff report has been provided, leaving residents wondering what the purpose of the name change is and what the impact the name change would have on Irvine, its residents, and Orange County residents as a whole. Residents have a right to such information and an opportunity to provide input.
  3. Breach of Irvine’s Sunshine Ordinance Requirements for Supplemental Agenda ItemsPer the Irvine Sunshine Ordinance, supplemental agenda items must either be: 1) an emergency requiring immediate action; or 2) ceremonial in nature. If this name change is not intended to be ceremonial in nature, it must be considered a business item and be placed on the business agenda for a future Great Park Board meeting.
  4. Changing the Name Will Require Amendments to the Orange County Great Park Articles of Incorporation and the Orange County Great Park Corporate Bylaws

    As mentioned in #2 above, the Articles of Incorporation are currently outdated as they state that the Board of Directors can have no less than 7 members with 2 being Irvine Staff members which can be subject to removal by the Great Park Director. The Great Park Board failed to update the corporate bylaws when the make-up of Board of Directors was changed in 2013.The Bylaws of the Orange County Great Park Corporation are out of date as well. Has it been updated? They do not appear on the city website that provides key Great Park documents so it is unknown whether or not the corporate bylaws are current. The City needs to provide the updated Orange County Great Park Bylaws on their website.