Friday, October 17, 2014 1:31pm

Mayor Bob Foster

NO MONEY FOR LBPD’S ANTI-GANG UNIT IN 2014 BUDGET


From LBReport.com: Although Long Beach Police Department officials contend that the majority of the city’s violent crimes are committed by gangs, the LBPD’s anti-gang units are completely stripped of funding in the budgets proposed by City management for fiscal year 2014. That complete lack of funding is exactly how much money recommended for the units […]

FOR GARCIA & JOHNSON, LEADERSHIP STOPS AT THE 5TH DISTRICT BORDER


They're seeking citywide offices, but you won't find mayoral candidate Robert Garcia and aspiring city attorney James Johnson answering questions from 5th district neighborhood leaders at a Candidate Forum on Monday evening at 7

ALL WRITEY: ON SOUL-SELLING ELECTIONEERING AND CAREERING


Another batch of your best-measured opinions, knee-jerk reactions, monkeyshines, folk wisdom, backtalk and bad stats in response to our stories. Enjoy!

PRICE GETS FOSTER’S ENDORSEMENT IN 3RD DISTRICT RACE, PLEDGES TO SEEK HIS ADVICE IF SHE WINS


From LBReport.com: Suzie Price, one of five candidates in a hotly contested race to succeed departing 3rd district Long Beach City Council member Gary DeLong, was endorsed Wednesday by termed-out Mayor Bob Foster. But statements attributed to Price in a media release written by her campaign staff suggest something deeper in this endorsement than the […]

GERRIE SCHIPSKE: THE LONG ROAD TO THE RIGHT PLACE AT THE RIGHT TIME


Gerrie Schipske was born into a Long Beach that is often idealized, but amid the architectural icons were major obstacles for most minorities---including women, especially lesbians. On the cusp of Long Beach elections on April 8, this encore of a 2013 OC Weekly cover story tells how a longshot arrived at the brink of becoming Mayor.

NOCAL BIZMAN DONATES $25,000 TO MAKE GARCIA MAYOR BECAUSE HE WANTS FOUR MORE YEARS OF BOB FOSTER


From LBReport.com: A Northern California businessman, whose firm contributed $25,000 to the independent expenditure committee “Friends of Long Beach, A Committee Supporting Vice Mayor Robert Garcia for Mayor” has told LBReport.com he did so because he respects the accomplishments of Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster and wants to see those policies continue. John Vidovich, President […]

WATCH VIDEO OF JANUARY 23 MAYORAL FORUM AT LBREPORT.COM


LBReport.com is streaming on-demand video of the Long Beach mayoral forum that it carried live Thursday evening (January 23) from The Grand events center, where about 450 people gathered to hear four of the field’s 10 candidates explain why they are best qualified to follow the two terms of Mayor Bob Foster. Long Beach City Council […]

SARA COZOLINO: EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY…AND MIGHT SAVE A LIFE


Sara Cozolino, whose revealing portraits of dogs and cats at Long Beach Animal Care Services have sparked an uptick in their adoptions, was honored this week with a proclamation from Mayor Bob Foster.

COUNCIL BOWS TO MAYOR, REMOVING HARBOR COMMISSIONER WHO DIDN’T


Taking their cue from an agenda item by Mayor Bob Foster---who said he had "lost confidence" in Long Beach Harbor Commission president Thomas Fields---six City Council members dutifully provided the two-thirds majority necessary to remove Fields from his position

WHY IS FOSTER TRYING TO FIRE THOMAS FIELDS? COME ASK HIM


Jerlene Tatum will be at City Hall tonight, trying to learn why Mayor Bob Foster has requested the City Council to remove Thomas Fields from the Harbor Commission. She's written an open letter to residents, trying to get them to be there, too.

BIG NAMES BEHIND BIG FUNDRAISER FOR JAMES JOHNSON’S BIG JUMP FROM LB CITY COUNCIL TO CITY ATTORNEY


FROM THE POLITICAL TICKER: Among the things James Johnson has learned during his first term as the Long Beach City Council’s 7th district representative is that he would prefer to be the Long Beach City Attorney. Johnson’s early September announcement that he was withdrawing his bid for re-election—which seemed like a done deal—to make a […]

LBREPORT.COM: READ EX-MAYOR O’NEILL’S LETTER TO FOSTER, COUNCIL REGARDING PORT CONTROVERSY


FROM LBREPORT.COM: Retired three-time Mayor of Long Beach Beverly O’Neill on Friday (November 15)  below to all Mayor Rob Foster, all nine member of the Long Beach City Council and the persons indicated as cc’d.members, Mayor Foster and the persons indicated as cc’d. O’Neill’s dispatch comes in the aftermath of an item that Foster  placed on […]

POLITICAL TICKER: SCHIPSKE’S MAYORAL CAMPAIGN FUNDRAISER AT TRANI’S


From the Political Ticker… Gerrie Schipske will hold a fundraiser to benefit her campaign for Mayor of Long Beach tonight at Phil Trani’s restaurant from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Ricardo Linarez, a candidate for the first district seat on the Long Beach City Council, has a fundraiser scheduled for Monday, November 11 at the […]

BOEING TO CLOSE LONG BEACH C17 PRODUCTION FACILITY IN 2015


From LBReport.com: In an action ultimately stemming from Defense Department decisionmakers under the Bush and Obama administrations and budget directives from Congress, Boeing announced this afternoon (Sept. 18) that it will “complete production of the C-17 Globemaster III and close the C-17 final assembly facility in Long Beach, Calif. in 2015.”   READ BOEING’S RELEASE […]

FEW CHANGES TO FOSTER/WEST BUDGET RUBBER-STAMPED BY CITY COUNCIL


The Long Beach City Council adopted a budget for fiscal year 2014 budget tonight (Tuesday, September 3) that is essentially the same as proposed by Mayor Bob Foster and City Manager Pat West, although with several alterations: • Funding for graffiti and code enforcement is restored. • Additional money is set aside for for soccer […]

REVELATION: LBPD GANG STAFFING HAS BEEN LESS THAN PROMISED, AND FOSTER BUDGET PROPOSES TO CONTINUE IT


From LBReport.com: Testimony by Long Beach Police Department management during Tuesday’s (Aug. 20) meeting of the City Council’s Budget Oversight Committee revealed that the deployment of LBPD gang field officers has been even less than the half-strength levels promised by the Council, and also that the budget proposed by Mayor Bob Foster and City Manager […]

COUNCIL’S “MAYORAL MAJORITY” HITS A MORAL LOW BY CANCELING AUG. 20 BUDGET-REVIEW MEETING


This is an editorial  from LBReport.com: Seven members of the Long Beach City Council—including two who are running for mayor (Robert Garcia and Suja Lowenthal) and two who are running for the state assembly (Patrick O’Donnell and Steve Neal)—voted Tuesday to shirk one of their most important public duties: decide how the public’s money is […]

GARCIA CALLS FOSTER’S BUDGET ‘RESPONSIBLE;’ SCHIPSKE CALLS LACK OF PERFORMANCE MEASURES ‘IRRESPONSIBLE’


From LBReport.com: Long Beach City Council members Robert Garcia and Gerrie Schipske, who are also declared candidates for Mayor, have expressed sharply contrasting opinions regarding the budget that exiting Mayor Bob Foster and City Manager Pat West have proposed for the City of Long Beach in fiscal year 2014. Garcia says the budget is “responsible, […]

SCHIPSKE INVITES LB RESIDENTS INTO CITY BUDGET DISCUSSION ON AUG. 14


With the rare appearance of a surplus at the bottom line of Mayor Bob Foster’s proposed budget for the City of Long Beach, the competition for spending rights has begun among various interests at City Hall. Where does that leave residents who want their voices heard on the matter? They could start at the Long […]

COUNCIL’S COWARDICE ALLOWS MAYOR’S OPINION TO SUB FOR CITY POLICY


Editorial by LBReport points out that BNSF wants a massive rail yard amid the homes and schools of Long Beach neighborhoods that already have the city's worst air, and the Long Beach City Council doesn't have enough courage to publicly support or oppose it.

LB CIVIC CENTER: GOING BACK TO THE FUTURE …AND THE RUMORS


In the wake of Long Beach's startling announcement that it is accepting the qualifications of anyone interested in building a new Civic Center, GreaterLongBeach.com re-publishes this Sept. 7 story by Theo Douglas, who saw it coming.

SCHIPSKE: WHY IS TRANSPARENCY SO SCARY TO LB MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL


[Note: This opinion piece originally appeared on the personal blog of Long Beach City Council member and mayoral candidate Gerrie Schipske] With Mayor Bob Foster’s behind-the-scenes urging, seven members of the Long Beach City Council killed any consideration of several political reforms I put on the April 16, 2013, agenda. The reforms—which are in place […]

ONE QUESTION FOR … ASSEMBLY CANDIDATE TONIA REYES URANGA


Nearly three years after Tonia Reyes Uranga last held a public office---or ran for one---the former Long Beach City Council member has filed to run for the 70th district seat in the California Assembly in 2014. We've got one question for her ...

FOSTER STILL MULLING THIRD TERM AS FIELD OF MAYORAL CANDIDATES GROWS


As the field of candidates for next year’s Long Beach mayoral race grows—attorney Doug Otto brought the number to four this week when he officially formed a committee—current Mayor Bob Foster has told LBREPORT.com that he is still thinking about whether or not to seek a third term via a write-in campaign. Foster made his comment during […]

LBREPORT EDITORIAL: CRIME STATS, MAPS CITY HALL DIDN’T WANT YOU TO SEE


Long Beach City Hall didn’t want you to see the maps showing the areas of the city where crimes are and where they are not. You weren’t supposed to know the different—sometimes very different—levels of violent crime from one Council district to another. You were supposed to accept what City Hall told news reporters—who then […]

RETELLING 2012: GRANTING LB SERENITY TO ACCEPT WHAT IT CAN’T CHANGE


The Budget Serenity System instituted by City Manager/Marionette Pat West---and Mayor/Puppeteer Bob Foster---allows councilmembers and citizens to skip the debating and spare themselves some grief ... except, that is, for democracy.

ALL WRITEY: OF SEETHING JOHNSONS, SMACKING CRONYISM & HOT AIR


These recent stories on GreaterLongBeach.com are among those that incited readers to make sure their points---some of them quite sharp---were registered.

COUNCIL TAKES FIRST STEP TOWARD DELIVERING ON MAYOR FOSTER’S THREAT TO LONG BEACH CITY WORKERS


Following through on a threat delivered by Mayor Bob Foster when he unveiled his proposed 2013 budget, the Long Beach City Council on Tuesday ordered the preparation of a ballot measure that would cut and limit the pay and benefits of the City’s non-public safety and mainly lower-paid employees. The vote was 6-2. City Attorney […]

LONG BEACH CIVIC CENTER: GOING BACK TO THE FUTURE … AND THE RUMORS


What's to become of Long Beach's internationally award-winning, locally disdained Civic Center? A panel of experts will consider that question---and any variation of it you may submit---during a discussion this evening (September 10, 2012) at 7 p.m. at the Aquarium of the Pacific. Tickets are $5.

ONLINE PETITION DEMANDS LARGER POLICE FORCE IN LONG BEACH BUDGET


With the Long Beach City Council poised to vote—either September 4 or September 11—on a budget for fiscal year 2013, a grassroots petition drive has been launched online telling the city’s elected officials: “We want a larger police force—NOT a shrinking one.” The petition, authored by Jennifer Gomez, is accessible at this link — and […]

LOCAL NORM: GRANTING LB SERENITY TO ACCEPT WHAT IT CAN’T CHANGE


"We're pioneering new ways to keep our citizens blissfully ignorant and thereby assure their absolute and total happiness, which is our only concern," City Manager Pat West said serenely after enacting the budget handed down from his Higher Power.

THE LOCAL NORM: MAYOR BIG BOY HOPES TO PULL A FAST (FOOD) ONE, TOO


"If Chick-fil-A has taught us anything," says Mayor Bob 'Big Boy' Foster, pushing a budget that slashes basic services and keeps things cushy for his inner circle, "it's that hateful ideas seem almost patriotic when accompanied by hot fat and hig h-fructose corn syrup."

AL AUSTIN: A CARPETBAGGER COMES HOME A WINNER


After losing a race in another district, then the support of Long Beach's power elite, Al Austin's 8th district neighbors elected him their councilmember.

LISTEN AS ALMOST-A-COUNCILMAN AL AUSTIN ANSWERS EVERYTHING


Days before he joins the Long Beach City Council, Al Austin answers every question thrown at him by GreaterLongBeach.com publisher Dave Wielenga during a July 5 appearance on Greater Long Beach Radio. Listen!

MAYOR FOSTER ENDORSES KAWASAKI OVER HIS EX-ENDORSEE AUSTIN FOR 8TH DISTRICT CITY COUNCIL SEAT


Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster has endorsed Lillian Kawasaki in her race against Al Austin to represent the 8th District on the Long Beach City Council, according to a media advisory released just before 1 p.m. today by the Kawasaki campaign. Five years ago, it was Austin who received Foster’s endorsement for City Council—”I am […]

IF GOD WON’T SAVE THE QUEEN MARY, PETITIONERS HOPE THE MAYOR WILL


Disturbed by the Queen Mary’s condition after nearly 45 years under City of Long Beach ownership, ship supporters are circulating an online petition urging Mayor Bob Foster to protect restore and preserve her.

HAS AUSTIN’S FALL FROM THE MAYOR’S GRACE MADE HIM A CANDIDATE OF THE PEOPLE?


Al Austin’s candidacy for the 8th district seat on the Long Beach City Council continues to gather grass-roots support that tends to run counter to the endorsements of prominent elected officials in the area. The roughly 3-to-1 margin by which Austin was endorsed over Lillian Kawasaki at Tuesday evening’s meeting of the Los Angeles County […]

WHO WAS IT WHO SAID, ‘MAKING IT MORE DIFFICULT FOR A POPULACE TO BE WELL-INFORMED IS VITAL FOR THE OPERATION OF THE OPERATORS?’


City Manager Pat West’s staff is making a budget presentation to the Long Beach City Council today, an agendized item about the “Fiscal Outlook for 2013 and Beyond.” Whoa! In the context of Long Beach’s current economic crisis—or perhaps even more importantly, its traditional inability to manage money, even when times are good—this seems like […]

LB CITY AUDITOR DOUD ENDORSES KAWASAKI IN 8TH DISTRICT RACE


Long Beach City Auditor Laura Doud has endorsed Lillian Kawasaki for the 8th district’s seat on the City Council, according to a media advisory from the Kawasaki campaign. “Now, more than ever, we need elected representatives devoted to being caretakers of the public trust and willing to be financial watchdogs,” said Doud, according to the […]

GABELICH CALLS PRESS CONFERENCE—WILL SHE RUN FOR 3RD COUNCIL TERM?


Rae Gabelich, who is winding up her second term as the 8th district’s representative to the Long Beach City Council, has called a press conference for this morning at 11 a.m. amid speculation that she will seek a third term as a write-in candidate. Until last summer, Gabelich laughed off any talk of a third […]

FOSTER’S STATE OF THE CITY ADDRESS: WE HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR BUT FACTS


It’s apparent to us, and we believe it’s quietly apparent to more than a few others, that Mayor Bob Foster fears certain facts about the current state of the City of Long Beach. Now in his second half decade in office, Mayor Foster’s 2012 State of the City message [text as prepared for delivery, click […]

SPECIAL HOLIDAY SONGS TO SING ALONG WITH THE CITY COUNCIL TONIGHT


Just in time to rescue the holiday spirit—but probably too late for justice—the Greed+WTF group has created a slim volume of holiday verse dedicated to the Long Beach City Council's vote tonight on the Second+PCH project. C'mon, everybody! Sing along!!

CITY ATTORNEY GATHERING INFO ON LUMACHI’S FATAL TRIP TO FLORIDA


LBReport.com has learned that the City Attorney’s office is in the very preliminary stages of gathering information about the trip to Florida in which Shaun Lumachi, publisher of LBPost.com, was part of a three-person group on official business for the City of Long Beach when he was killed in a Dec. 3 car crash near Key West. […]

WOULD YOU FEEL SAFE WHERE MAYOR BUILT ‘HABITAT FOR HUMANITY’ HOUSE?


An LBReport.com editorial points out that Mayor Bob Foster, who with the help of 1st district Councilman Robert Garcia pushed through a budget that cut officers from the Long Beach Police Department, oversaw the construction of a Habitat For Humanity house in one of the 1st district's most-dangerous neighborhoods.

WHERE IN THE WORLD WAS THE MAYOR? IN ITALY, ALL EXPENSES PAID


LBReport.com reports that Mayor Bob Foster, who is paid a six-figure salary, missed the last two City Council meetings because he was on a trip to three Italian cities that was paid for by a private not-for-profit entity based in San Francisco, which is mostly composed of corporate-energy interests and related labor unions.

LB FIREFIGHTERS APPROVE CONCESSIONS TO CONTRACT CITY ALREADY SIGNED


Rank and file members of the Long Beach Firefighters Association (LBFFA) have voted to approve changes to their City Hall contract, which were sought by city management and pressed by Mayor Bob Foster, although the existing contract had already been negotiated and signed by City Hall. According to the LBFFA president Capt. Rich Brandt, roughly […]

AS JOHNSON FACES RECALL, A LOOK BACK AT HIS CANDIDACY


A version of this article---based on an interview with James Johnson when he was running for the 7th District seat on the Long Beach City Council---first appeared in January 2010. It is re-published to provide context to a citizens' group's attempt to recall Johnson.

RECALL JAMES JOHNSON GROUP GOES PUBLIC, IN A PRIVATE KIND OF WAY


Proponents of an effort to recall 7th district city council member James Johnson made their first public statement Wednesday during a press event outside Johnson’s field office at Admiral Kidd Park, but still kept their cards close to the vest. Mike Kowal, a longtime activist in the 8th district—in fact, the only announced candidate for […]

RECALL JAMES JOHNSON COMMITTEE TO PRESENT CHARGES THIS AFTERNOON


The Recall James Johnson Committee, which on Tuesday announced its intention to circulate recall petitions against the 7th district’s representative on the Long Beach City Council, says that it will present a list of charges this afternoon—among them “Neglected Duties; Incompetent Performance; and Misuse of his Office.” The group’s media advisory states that “community leaders […]

LBREPORT.COM EDITORIAL: LONG BEACH STEAMROLLED BY MAYOR’S MACHINE SIX


[EDITOR'S NOTE: With clear and cogent analysis---and not a punch pulled---LBReport.com lays out how the City of Long Beach was laid flat by six Long Beach City Council members who continued their robotic obedience to Mayor Bob Foster by approving a fiscal year 2012 budget that it balanced by stripping the skin from public safety […]

AT 11TH HOUR, WHEN PEOPLE HAVE GONE HOME, COUNCIL PASSES BUDGET THEY OPPOSED


At 11:11 p.m. Tuesday, after the large crowd that testified hours earlier had gone home, the Long Beach City Council passed the fiscal year 2012 budget in an empty chamber—enacting with a minor change the cuts to police, fire, parks and libraries proposed by Mayor Bob Foster and City Manager Pat West. The vote was […]

PORKY’S REVENGE? COUNCIL’S SPENDING WISH-LIST WOULD BLOCK PROPOSED BUDGET ALTERNATIVE


LBReport.com has learned that a list of Councilmember-desired spending items is quietly circulating on City Hall’s 14th floor—a list that would deplete surplus upland oil revenue and effectively prevent its use to avert the police, fire, parks and library cuts proposed by Mayor Bob Foster and City Manager Pat. Councilmembers Rae Gabelich, Steve Neal and […]

DID TELEPHONIC TOWN HALL ON BUDGET OUTDRAW IN-PERSON MEETINGS?


LONG BEACH (Via LBReport.com)—Participants in the Telephone Town Hall held Thursday evening on the alternative Long Beach budget plan proposed by three city council members appear to have outnumbered in-person attendees visible at budget meetings held in some council districts. The office of 9th district representative Steve Neal, who along with Rae Gabelich (8th) and […]

HARBOR COMMISSION’S UNANIMOUS VOTE TO BUY WORLD CENTER STILL ISN’T OVER


LONG BEACH (Via LBReport.com)—If you missed the big moment—couldn’t be there for the Long Beach Harbor Commission’s special meeting Tuesday or couldn’t stop texting while the panel rolled through the only item on the agenda—maybe the 4-0 vote authorizing the Port of Long Beach’s purchase of the Long Beach World Center office/retail property seems as though the […]

ONE QUESTION … FOR SNIPPED-FROM-HIS DISTRICT CANDIDATE MIKE KOWAL


The back story: Back in April, Mike Kowal became the first candidate in the 2012 campaign for the Long Beach City Council. Kowal filed to run in the 8th District, where Rae Gabelich faces the term-limit ordinance after serving eight years. Kowal has lived in the 8th district—in the same home—for nearly 30 years while […]

LB COUNCIL ALLOTS 90 MINUTES FOR 5 BUDGET ISSUES, BUT MAKES TIME TO KISS KNABE’S BUNDT


LONG BEACH (via LBReport.com)—Someone inside City Hall has crammed five of the most-significant subjects in City of Long Beach budget debate—police, fire, code enforcement, libraries and parks—into a special Council meeting … that will last only 90 minutes … and begins at 3 in the afternoon.  Yes, this afternoon. Such curious scheduling obviously raises some […]

AMNESIA FILE: DURING LBPD’S 2010 CUTS CHIEF STILL HAD HOPE FOR ACADEMY


Maybe you've forgotten, but while accepting budget cuts last year, Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell expressed strong hope for a Police Academy to replenish the thinning ranks of the LBPD this year. Anyway, forget it. Ain't gonna happen.

FOSTER’S FIRST-TERM ACTIONS CREATED MILLIONS OF LB’S CURRENT DEFICIT


Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster's push for new, longer and richer contracts for the city's firefighters and police officers created an economic situation he now calls unsustainable---and for which he now seeks to cut funding to police, firefighting and library services.

A NEW CONTRACT WITH COPS? LOTS OF Q’S, NOT MANY A’S, WITH STEVE JAMES


LONG BEACH—Less than 24 hours before releasing Long Beach city management’s proposed fiscal-year 2012 budget, Mayor Bob Foster’s office released a “joint statement” with Long Beach Police Officers Association President Lt. Steve James on “an agreement in principle on a new contact.” The full text—both paragraphs—is available at LBReport.com. The current City Hall-LBPOA contract is […]

NO BUTTS ABOUT IT, CORDERO’S HARBOR COMMISSION CHAIR STILL EMPTY


Mayor Bob Foster ignored a public-access provision of state law when he appointed Doug Drummond to the Harbor Commission, and Councilmember Gerrie Schipske has postponed today's meeting of the Personnel & Civil Service Committee until he complies. Meanwhile, former Commissioner Mario Cordero's chair remains derriere-less.

HEAR CLIPPED-AWAY CANDIDATE MIKE KOWAL ON GREATER LB RADIO


Mike Kowal, who was eliminated as a candidate for the 8th district seat on the Long Beach City Council when district boundaries were redrawn to exclude his longtime residence by a half-block, explains his reaction and his plans on the new episode of Greater Long Beach Radio with Dave Wielenga. The show is available 24/7 or as a downloadable podcast.

JOHNSON USES TACTICS OF A TRIAL LAWYER, NOT A PUBLIC OFFICIAL, TO WIN RESTRICTING BATTLE VS. CITIZENS


[ OPINION FROM LBREPORT.COM] Like an unwelcome but necessary medical diagnosis, the people of Long Beach got a clear view of the unhealthy political machine that’s taken root in their City Hall. Former Sacramento lobbyist Mayor Bob Foster and his primary allies—former Sacramento aide James Johnson, former Republican-now-reinvented-Democrat Robert Garcia, developer-friendly-Democrat Suja Lowenthal and no-wasted-words […]

COUNCIL QUARTET WANTS CITY MANAGER TO DEVISE VIOLENCE PLAN IN 90 DAYS


With police numbers falling, replacements deemed unaffordable and bullets flying in his district, Long Beach City Council member Robert Garcia—Mayor Bob Foster’s choice to chair the Public Safety Committee—has come up with a proposal for dealing with the city’s violence: make City Manager Pat West solve the problem … and fast. Garcia and three colleagues—Patrick […]

PLASTIC OH-NO BAND: COUNCIL QUINTET’S ENVIRO-ODE TO BE HEARD IN COURT


In the first fallout from the Long Beach City Council’s just-approved ordinance that beginning Aug. 1 will prohibit most of the city’s grocery stores from from offering free plastic bags to customers—instead charging 10 cents each—the “Save the Plastic Bag Coalition” has informed City Hall that it will file a legal challenge to the ban. San […]

LONG BEACH POST PUBLISHER SHAUN LUMACHI A GUEST ON GREATER LONG BEACH RADIO THURSDAY AT 8 P.M.


The second printed edition of the Long Beach Post has hit the streets—for now, very specific streets—as publisher Shaun Lumachi continues a march toward what he predicts will be media dominance of Long Beach. What does that mean? “The Long Beach Post will be Long Beach’s most-read media publication by Jan. 1, 2015,” Lumachi asserts. OK, […]

NOT DOING THEIR JOBS: LBREPORT.COM’S NEW SERIES ON COUNCIL SILLINESS


LBReport.com begins an editorial series titled, "Not Doing Their Jobs," pointing out City Council agenda items that go far beyond the scope of what this council should be doing. Today's nonsense: Councilmembers Steve Neal, Robert Garcia, Dee Andrews and Suja Lowenthal seek to create a "Long Beach healthy food policy."

THE TSUNAMI’S RIPPLES: AN EVENING OF SHARED HUMANITY AT JAPANESE GARDENS


No one knows why we must suffer, yet no one can deny that the ripples of our suffering often awaken revitalizing forces in our lives. So it was at Sunday's vigil at Long Beach State's Japanese Gardens for victims of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. [ A photo essay by Jeanine Birong. ]

CHERIN CO-HOSTING BAY AREA RECEPTION FOR FOSTER, BUT INSISTS IT’S NOT A POLITICAL FUNDRAISER


Mayor Bob Foster, who has formed a political committee allowing him to raise money for a 2014 run for state treasurer, is scheduled to appear at an invitation-only reception next week at the San Francisco law firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, LBReport.com has learned. Alex Cherin, a former Long Beach government official whose […]

FOSTER THREATENS CITY UNIONS WITH BALLOT INITIATIVE TO CURB PENSIONS


In his State of the City address Tuesday night, Mayor Bob Foster said if the city's three largest public employee unions---police, fire, non-public safety/machinists---do not accept his pension curbing proposal he will support a ballot initiative that would do it.

WATCH MAYOR’S STATE OF CITY ADDRESS LIVE ON LBREPORT.COM TONIGHT


Mayor Bob Foster will deliver his State of the City address in the Center Theater at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center this evening at 7 p.m., and those without tickets can watch the event live on LBReport.com. This will be the third time that Foster’s State of the City will be free and open […]

FREE TICKETS AVAILABLE FOR FOSTER’S STATE OF THE CITY SPEECH JAN. 11


Mayor Bob Foster will deliver his fifth State of the City address—and the fourth in a row since Foster broke previous Mayor Beverly O’Neill’s dubious tradition of using the City Charter-mandated speech as a Chamber of Commerce fundraiser—on January 11 at 7 p.m.at The Center Theater in the Long Beach Performing Arts Center. All Long […]

GAME CHANGER: FOSTER CHALLENGE INVALIDATES LB CAMPAIGN REFORM ACT


Mayor Bob Foster can use money he raised for his 2010 mayoral run—against 21-year-old Cerritos College student Stevie Merino—to fund his committee seeking statewide office in 2014 despite prohibitions in Long Beach’s Campaign Reform Act enacted by voters in 1994. The revelation came during Monday’s  (Nov. 30) meeting of the city council’s Elections Oversight Committee. […]

BILL PEARL OF LBREPORT.COM ASKS: WHERE’S THE WORD ‘BREAKWATER’?


Despite years of debate over the Long Beach Breakwater, which culminated in a vote by the Long Beach City Council to fund a Breakwater reconnaissance study, the term “Breakwater” doesn’t appear in the text of an agreement between the City of Long Beach and the Army Corps of Engineers to share the costs of a […]

MAYOR’S WIFE USES HER FACEBOOK PAGE TO PUSH LB CITY COUNCIL FOR TOUGHER MEDICAL MARIJUANA ORDINANCE


The Long Beach City Charter doesn’t give her an official voice and she isn’t registered with City Hall as a lobbyist, but Nancy Foster is the wife of Mayor Bob Foster—and on Monday night she leveraged whatever influence comes with that connection to support additional restrictions to Long Beach’s medical marijuana ordinance. Three city council […]

DOES BIG SHUFFLE OF SECOND+PCH TEAM SIGNAL A BIG CHANGE IN TACTICS?


Cliff Ratkovich and Carl Kemp are out, Stephen T. Conley and Alex Cherin are in, and there is speculation that the shuffle signals a change in strategy by Second+PCH lead lead developer David Malmuth---an attempt to pull political strings rather than push for community support.

FOSTER’S BUDGET VETO KILLS DEAL WITH FIREFIGHTERS TO FORFEIT RAISES AND PREVENT STATION CLOSURES


Long Beach Firefighters Association president Rich Brandt and members of the group’s leadership on Tuesday night told the Long Beach City Council that Mayor Bob Foster’s veto of roughly $330,000 in Fire Department spending killed a deal in which firefighters had narrowly voted to give up roughly $2.4 million in raises to prevent rotating fire […]

LB FIREFIGHTERS NARROWLY VOTE TO SURRENDER RAISES, BUT MAYOR FOSTER’S VETO RAISES A NEW WRINKLE


LBReport.com has learned that members of the Long Beach Firefighters Association (LBFA) have narrowly voted to give up this year’s negotiated pay raises—contingent on avoiding management imposition of “Plan B” cuts this year including fire station “rolling brownouts.” LBFA president Capt. Rich Brandt tells LBReport.com that it was the most contentious vote he can recall […]

FOUR LB COUNCIL MEMBERS WANT TO TALK ABOUT MAYOR FOSTER’S SURPRISE VETO OF HIS OWN BUDGET


Four members of the Long Beach City Council — Patrick O’Donnell, Gerrie Schipske, Rae Gabelich and Steve Neal — have placed an item on the September 28 meeting agenda to “consider and discuss” and potentially attempt to override Mayor Bob Foster’s veto of one percent of the general fund spending in the city manager’s proposed […]

ALL WRITEY!! A SAMPLING OF YOUR COMMENTS / CRITICISMS / LOVE NOTES / WITTICISMS


APPRECIATING RICH ARCHBOLD WHERE IT COUNTS MOST—AS A HUMAN BEING [ By Louise Cunningham ] Love the article on Rich; he is a very special person and so happy that you did this. I, too, many times use the “Once when I was at the PT … ” / KATHY BERRY At least Archbold was […]

HEAR HOW COUNCIL VOTED TO SELL CITY-OWNED OFFICE BUILDING TO WELL-CONNECTED DEVELOPER FOR $4 MILLION


The Long Beach City Council voted 6-2 (Gerrie Schipske and James Johnson dissenting, Rae Gabelich absent for entire meeting) Tuesday to approve sale of City Hall East at 100 Long Beach Blvd. for $4 million to Lyon Capital Ventures, LLC. The Council action approved the sale (approximately 36,725 square feet of land area plus a […]

FOSTER VETOES OWN BUDGET? THAT’S THE CRAZIEST THING I’VE EVAH HOID!


Groucho, Chico, Harpo, call your office. On Sept. 19, the very last day for him to act, Mayor Bob Foster vetoed part of the budget that he forwarded from city management to the City Council in July without offering a dissent on what he just vetoed. (LBReport.com coverage, click here). Wait, there’s more. The items […]

MARIO CORDERO NOMINATED BY OBAMA TO FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION


Mario Cordero, Long Beach Harbor Commissioner and Long Beach City College political science professor, will be nominated by President Barack Obama to a position on the Federal Maritime Commission, it was announced late Friday by the White House. Cordero was appointed to the Harbor Commission in 2003 by then-Mayor Beverly O’Neill and was reappointed in 2009 […]

MAYOR BOB FOSTER’S ‘GROUCHO STRATEGY’


In the Marx Brothers’ classic A Night At the Opera, Groucho is dining in an elegant restaurant at the height of the Depression with a lady friend. The waiter hands Groucho the check. “This is outrageous,” Groucho responds…as he hands the bill to his dinner guest and says, “I wouldn’t pay it if I were […]

COUNCIL’S NEW BUDGET SLASHES POLICE AND FIRE STAFFING LEVELS


The Long Beach City Council voted 8-0 Tuesday night—Suja Lowenthal was absent, vacationing in India—to adopt a fiscal year 2011 budget that cuts 64 sworn budgeted police positions from Long Beach Police Department officers available for citywide deployment and cuts the Long Beach Fire Department budget to the point that its management says there will […]

LBREPORT.COM EDITORIAL: FOSTER’S MAYORAL LEARNING CURVE LOOKS LIKE A DOWNWARD SPIRAL


Mayor Bob Foster has learned a lot since taking office. He’s become so enlightened that he now dismisses years of testimony by Long Beach’s previous police chief, the professional judgment of Los Angeles’ current police chief and multiple research studies cited in a recent Rand corporation study—which L.A.’s current police chief publicly cited in testimony […]

MAYOR FOSTER SAYS LONG BEACH CAN BE A SAFER CITY WITH FEWER COPS


In a televised interview, Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster says that unless the Long Beach Police Officers Association agrees to a second consecutive modification of its contract with the City of Long Beach, layoffs are necessary because the City is paying nearly 70 percent of its budget for public safety and can’t go further without running […]

ALL WRITEY!! A SAMPLING OF YOUR COMMENTS / CRITICISMS / LOVE NOTES / WITTICISMS


A VISION FOR LONG BEACH THAT DOESN’T INVOLVE HALLUCINATIONS? [Dave Wielenga, Aug. 25] “Cherin’s first clients were Pareto Energy (which creates municipally funded micro-grids—using technologies such as solar photovoltaic power and solar thermal energy—to create locally based power sources).” Hmmm. Does that sound like something the former president of the local electrical monopoly is going […]

L.A.’S CLEAN TRUCKS PROGRAM—THE ONE L.B. BAILED ON—UPHELD BY JUDGE


A Los Angeles federal court trial judge has upheld the City/Port of Los Angeles “Clean Trucks Program” against a challenge by the American Trucking Associations (ATA). The trucking industry interest group had contended that the Long Beach/Los Angeles programs violated federal supremacy in maritime matters and interstate commerce regulation. To view the ruling by Federal […]

A HOUSE-TO-HOUSE SEARCH PARTY FOR SCOFFLAW CATS? GET MEOWTTA HERE!


While I try to give the slip to the Cat License Gestapo---buying cat food and litter at a store in another county, avoiding neighbors with allergies who might put the clues together---I have visions of Kitty at the computer furtively searching out countries without cat extradition laws … Cat-mandoo, Purrsia, Cat-alina.

GARCIA’S GOT HIS REASONS: FIRST NATURE CALLED, THEN HIS FAMILY


Robert Garcia (center, between brother and mother) was on the phone with a family member during the Long Beach City Council's vote for vice-mayor---the second time in three months he's been out of the council chamber during a controversial vote. He insists it's coincidence, not calculation.

FOSTER CALLS SPECIAL COUNCIL MEETING TO PICK LONG BEACH VICE MAYOR


Mayor Bob has called a special meeting of the Long Beach City Council for Tuesday, July 27, at 4:45 p.m. at which the only agenda item will be the selection of the Vice Mayor. Mayor Foster has scheduled the Vice Mayor-selection special meeting in the middle of two other council sessions: a 3 p.m. meeting of […]

LONG BEACH GETS $25,000 NEA GRANT TO DESIGN PORTABLE PERFORMANCE SPACE


The City of Long Beach will receive a $25,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, which along with sums from the Long Beach Arts Council and others, will help fund a national competition to design a portable space that can be moved throughout the City. Long Beach is one of 21 communities nationally […]

TONIA REYES URANGA’S ‘ONCE-IN-A-CHANCE LIFETIME’ AND THE BALANCE OF POWER IN LONG BEACH


These are the waning days of Tonia Reyes Uranga’s run for her political life—and perhaps the darkness before the dawn of a new balance of power in Long Beach. Too heavy? Maybe not. Defeat in Reyes Uranga’s June 8 showdown with well-connected newcomer James Johnson for the 7th district seat on the Long Beach City […]

CONFIRMED: MAYOR FOSTER ENDORSES JAMES JOHNSON IN 7TH DISTRICT RACE


Mayor Bob Foster officially endorsed assistant city auditor James Johnson for the Seventh District seat on the Long Beach City Council today, confirming a report published Thursday by Redistricted! The announcement came early this afternoon in a press release from the Johnson campaign and included this prepared statement from Foster: “James Johnson has the experience […]

MAYOR FOSTER ABOUT TO ANNOUNCE HIS ENDORSEMENT OF JOHNSON OVER REYES URANGA IN 7TH DISTRICT RACE


After four years of behind-the-scenes political patronage, Mayor Bob Foster has apparently decided to bestow his official endorsement upon James Johnson for the Seventh District city council seat currently occupied by Tonia Reyes Uranga. The two candidates are facing off in a June 8 runoff election for the only undetermined spot on the Long Beach […]

TONIGHT’S 3RD DISTRICT DEBATE MAY BE THE MOST IMPORTANT YET … TO THE MAYOR, ANYWAY


BY DAVE WIELENGA Tonight’s debate among candidates for the Third District seat on the City Council may be the most important of the Long Beach Press Club’s seven-part Debates At Da’ Beach series—well, to Mayor Bob Foster, anyway. He’s been telling people that he’ll “do anything” to see that incumbent Gary DeLong is re-elected over […]