When Laguna Niguel Mayor Fred Minagar recused himself from the SunPointe development public comments portion of the Nov. 7 council meeting it raised questions about his relationship with ICF International, the contractor for the environmental report for the development.
Minagar told the council he was recusing himself because of a potential conflict of interest. It was third third time this year he has recused himself from votes regarding ICF.
Over the weekend Minagar issued a statement via email:
“I have recused myself to participate on any votes regarding the SunPointe project during the aforementioned meeting as well as on April 18, 2017 and July 18,2017 due to my company’s performing a task order between November 28, 2016 and March 20, 2017 with ICF.
“It goes without saying that the final decision by the City Council has not been made yet. It has been postponed to December 5, 2017. I am very confident that my four City Council colleagues will make the best final decision based upon the presented documents and public testimony.”
Minagar is the president and CEO of Minagar & Associates, Inc., an engineering and planning company that worked as a sub-consultant to ICF from Nov. 28, 2016 to March 20, 2017, and had no business prior, Minagar told the Register on Monday.
“I had to recuse myself during the conflict of interest, from the votes that I made at the end of 2016 and in 2017,” Minagar said.
Minagar said that after consulting with City Attorney Terry Dixon, he continued to recuse himself after the company was finished with business with ICF.
“I’ve been serving the city for 21 years and over all of these years I’ve made sure that everything done is based on honesty and integrity; only a few times have I recused myself,” Minagar said.
The only other instance where Minagar recused himself involved his children wanting to join the Youth Committee, he said.
Of the votes regarding ICF in Minagar’s time on city council, he has recused himself from three, including Nov. 7, according to city documents.
In April, Minagar recused himself from a funding amendment vote regarding ICF on another project involving wetlands maintenance.
In July, Minagar recused himself from an amendment to approve $25,000 to the professional services agreement with ICF regarding SunPointe.
But in March 2016, Minagar did not recuse himself from a vote for the execution of a professional services agreement with ICF regarding wetlands maintenance.
And in October…