Letters to the Editor

Failure to Communicate

Several days ago, we received a letter from Synergy Development Services Inc, a contractor for AT&T. It informed us that it will install a 5G cell antenna/tower in our front yard, at any moment. The project has been permitted by the city without our notification or ability to participate in the planning process. If there was any type of review, we were not told about it. The letter says it’s a done deal and perfectly safe and legal.

We are concerned about potential health impacts, 24/7 sound impacts (rumored to be in the range of 45-60 decibels) from its fan (unmentioned at all in letter), aesthetic impacts, and a steep decrease in our home’s value. The loss will be caused both by people’s discomfort with a source of radiation that may cause cancer so close to the house, and by its size, prominence on the front of the lot and ugly appearance.

The FCC says this 5G antenna is safe, because there’s no knowledge of danger from it. It’s a new technology. There have been no scientific studies to make a case for its safety or harmful impact. A large and rapidly accelerating number of countries, cities and counties, however, are instituting a moratorium on 5G, particularly in residential areas, because it’s believed by hundreds of doctors, scientists and medical researchers to be likely to cause brain cancer, heart damage, headaches, confusion, insomnia, ear pain, mental /emotional problems and ringing ears.

Our house is located near both Mark Twain elementary school and LBCC, in a neighborhood full of children. It can’t be good to have children subjected to its radiation and EMFs daily.

We think it doesn’t belong on our property unless and until AT&T and the city produce conclusive scientific studies that prove it’s safe.

We’re charged $106.20 by the city for the privilege to appeal the approval, a privilege its (LBMC) statute only affords to us, the people next door on one side, and the people across the street. Apparently, the antenna doesn’t radiate past our driveway, though the literature says it radiates over 1,000 feet, in all directions, like a shower head.

An oversized city tree next to the site, 10’ away, on the parkway that already looks half dead, will likely be baked/killed by the radiation. We hope it won’t catch fire or fall on our home. The tree species, Australian Pine, is grown exclusively for firewood in India and other countries.

We can’t believe it was legal to inflict this giant monstrosity on us with no prior notice or information regarding its safety, and the city doesn’t have to care that it’s just shaved hundreds of thousands of dollars off what we could sell our home for if this makes us have to move. I have suffered from chronic migraines for 15 years. I sure don’t need this on my property.

Moira Hahn
Lakewood Village

 

LBPD Corruption

The investigating LBPD officer in this [Lawsuit Exposes LBPD Internal Affairs Corruption, Feb. 12] article, Officer Jonathan Steinhauser, has a significant police misconduct history. Of particular note, on May 28, 2009 Officer Steinhauser shot an unarmed Ernest Rodriguez three times with “no warning” while in front of Legends Bar in Belmont Shore.

On August 25, 2011 the District Court of California awarded Mr. Rodriguez $260,000 and found that https://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/california/cacdce:

At no point did Steinhauser warn Rodriguez of his intent to shoot.

Though the officer may have been entitled to use force, his use of deadly force was unreasonable.

Multiple witnesses reported that plaintiff never hit, attacked or advanced against Steinhauser.

As a police officer, Steinhauser is entitled to qualified immunity and therefore is immune to suit.

This was neither the beginning nor the end of Officer Steinhauser’s misconduct. Other lawsuits involving Officer Steinhauser’s include:

Chad Howell sued Officer Steinhauser On May 11, 2007 for violating his civil rights: http://dockets.justia.com/docket/california/cacdce/2:2007cv03127/388693/

Suzette Carmichael sued Officer Steinhauser on September 13, 2010 for violating her civil rights: http://dockets.justia.com/docket/california/cacdce/2:2010cv06779/482175

Jason Siebert, was “decapitated” on December 6, 2008 when the car he was driving was struck by another car involved in a high-speed pursuit by Officer Steinhauser http://www.leagle.com/decision/In%20CACO%2020110419014.xml:

Mr. Downing should be familiar with the excessive force and misconduct case [Debra Stefano vs. Long Beach Police] a 2013 case involving Officer Steinhauser. Downing actually wrote an opinion piece on it in the Press-Telegram about the large settlement paid out. https://patch.com/california/belmontshore/bring-long-beach-police-out-of...

Another high-profile, on-going case is Kathleen Williams vs. Long Beach Police Department involving misconduct, excessive force and racial profiling by Officer Steinhauser and Chief Luna. https://dockets.justia.com/docket/california/cacdce/2:2018cv01069/700719

Years of proven and prerequisite misconduct, negligence and excessive use of force qualified Officer Steinhauser to be promoted to sergeant in 2015. http://www.longbeach.gov/police/press-releases/l-b-p-d--promotions/

Steinhauser’s uncle was until recently superintendent of Long Beach Schools. Jonathan Steinhauser and his father are both high-level black belts in martial arts and at the time of the Rodriguez shooting owned the martial arts school under contract to provide martial arts and hand-to-hand combat training to the LBPD, making it absurd when Steinhauser claimed he shot Rodriguez because Rodriguez took his baton from him. All of which was witnessed by over 50 people sitting outside at Legends and all testified what happened is not what Steinhauser claimed.

The Rodriguez shooting was a bad scene that was quickly covered up. I would not be surprised if Steinhauser is eventually made police chief. He fits the mold.

Michael Ruehle

 

I am totally shocked by your [Stephen Downing] wonderfully articulate article in the Beachcomber. Where has all the accountability and transparency gone? Talk about newsworthy! Reading it was like watching a police TV series. I hope someone in the film industry connects with you. Your article made me remember my – decades ago – experiences with no help whatsoever from the LBPD.

You are a gifted writer, so you should write a book about such investigations, as I did. (And, I just finished book 22, so I highly recommend it). I’d be the first in line to buy your book. Thank you for sharing all the facts of the case. Write on.

Sherry L. Meinberg

 

Housing Issues

I reviewed the document on 2021 Draft State Legislative Agenda and was disappointed not to see a [LB City Council] commitment to opposing state legislation that reduces local controls. That has been a consistent theme on this [state legislation] committee for many years.

Two bills have already been identified as the worst housing bills of 2021 – SB9 and SB10 – and they are making their way through the state legislature. Please agendize a study session on these two bills and consider a resolution for the City of Long Beach to oppose them.

Livable California is a group that investigates housing bills. Their intent is to support “good housing bills” that will result in affordable housing. Attendance at their twice monthly Zoom meetings includes elected officials from across the state that are intent on staying up-to-date on state legislation that affects housing. Guest speakers are often renowned in their field. They suggest that City Council members join the California Alliance of Local Electeds. https://www.livablecalifornia.org/category/california-alliance-of-local-...

Please get SB9 and SB10 on your radar. I’m confident that the citizens of Long Beach would appreciate your active support in opposing these bills.

Corliss Lee
President Eastside Voice

 

The closing of Kmart as well as other large stores going out of business and with little demand for commercial space now and in the future why not consider those spaces for small apartments?

I visualize that a hole can be cut in the roof and units built or placed in the exterior areas. There is an apartment building on Alvarado Street between 7th and 8th streets that was built with units completely built off-site and hoisted into place.

There are now empty buildings already that could also be used. Obviously zoning laws would have to be adjusted.

Eric David

 

Swimming in Dough

I am looking forward to the construction of the new Belmont Plaza Pool. A price tag of $85 million may sound like a lot of money for a recreational entity. Yet look at what it cost to replace the Gerald Desmond Bridge, build a new City Hall, new library and courthouse. The story I read indicated that they only need another $20 million or so to sign on the dotted line.

Viewing the plans for this new pool has me wondering: Once it’s built, where is the parking going to be? Mentioning a shuttle brings back memories of the 2nd & PCH retail development.

Hard to believe the Coastal Commission would approve this whole project without considering the transportation implications it brings. Don’t forget we still have the altered Broadway with lane reduction and the imposed bike lane danger issues to address as long as we on the topic of redevelopment.

What about the glaciers melting and sea level rising? Wasn’t the first Belmont Plaza built on some kind of fault line nearby? Are we taking this into account?

How about settling the issue of the Queen Mary and finding her a new owner?

Ward Johnson

Category:

Comments

Thank you for informing the public of California Senate Bills SB 9 (Atkins) and SB10 (Wiener). I oppose both bills, which will end single-family zoning and toss out city planning. Upzoning will result in higher land values, not lower housing prices. Homebuyers may find it harder to compete with bids from developers and speculators, who will benefit most from these bills.
Current law already allows a by-right accessory dwelling unit (ADU) and a junior ADU (e.g. from garage conversion) on a single-family parcel. So SB 9 opens the way for one home to be turned into 2x4=8 housing units if duplexes are built on both subdivisions after a lot split. A city council can approve all 8, or only deny the ADUs to leave 6 units destined for ministerial approval. These bills will damage neighborhoods and democracy at the local level. Please contact our elected representatives.

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