Letters to the Editor

City’s $3B Budget

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The City of Long Beach presented its proposed $3 billion 2022 budget [July 16] to the media; however, the press was not given access to the document before the event.

The document was posted on the city website during the event. [longbeach.gov/budget] The city was gracious enough to hand out city manager and mayor approved “highlights” from the budget at the event, meaning the press had no time to study the $3 billion proposal in advance. So much for transparency.

At the end of the press conference, I approached the city manager to ask a follow up question. As I asked my question he said, “Are you recording this?” I responded yes. He demanded that I turn off my phone because I didn’t ask his permission to record him. He was reminded that this is a press event with journalists present who ask questions and his permission was not necessary.

We followed, asking questions, but he ducked into a card-key access elevator to avoid our questions. I guess you are asking the right questions when they run from you.

Phillip Zonkel


Oh, they didn’t even give you the budget at the press conference announcing the budget? Yeah that’s what we in the business call “horse shit”

Rob Chappell


I  guess only a few of us remember the days when we got line item budgets for each department. Now it is merely a generalized scam. Maybe they are trying to hide their obscene salaries or hide their hideously poor pay for the actual workers. Or just hiding the overspending on unnecessary police overtime.

So many black holes that our tax money is sucked into. Without our knowledge I think we are in the same place we were in 1775. No taxation without representation. I promote that on the basis that no councilmember even knows what is proposed. They are always so shocked when the truth comes to light down the road.

As Bill Pearl says: “It is always the city council’s fault.”

Robert Fox

[Editor’s Note: The “council’s fault” comment dates to the early 2000s and was often used by community activist Traci Wilson-Kleekamp before her family moved to Missouri in 2004. See 2017 news story here: https://www.columbiamissourian.com/news/local/for-traci-wilson-kleekamp-....


Super-Spreader Event

Thinking, honorable LB voters united to put the Trump nightmare behind us ... except for vestiges such as Chief Luna! He has all the recognizable earmarks of this despicable bunch – a remarkable passion for decisions that at best highlight his incompetence. Or at worst a deep dark streak of opportunistic criminality.

Fear not Chief Luna, you may have missed the last bus but many Long Beach citizens will gladly pay for another ticket on the one loading stragglers now. Go on, give them a reason to wave a goodbye.

Joe Viola


Recovery Plan

An interesting and well written article. As a victim of LBPD, programs Like “ABLE” and “EPIC” could help. Heck, the CPCC could help, if there was any real accountability by the PD. Sad state of affairs. Change is due.

Tracy Alcantar


Keep holding them accountable, demanding transparency.

Alex J. Norman


With the exception of one, the recovery plan appeared to have more public relations value than long-term substance.

Well said, Stephen Downing

Greg Buhl


Smoke & mirrors! The council will love it.

Mike Kowal


Mishandling Issues

As a multi-year resident of Long Beach and Belmont Shore, I am writing to share some facts and observations as to how the City of Long Beach handles, and mishandles, problems and issues.

For starters, take the official city COVID-19 tests, which my wife and I both took via a testing site. The bad news is that we never received any test results and would have been unable to travel to Europe if we had relied solely on their tests; luckily, we also took private tests, whose negative results were received promptly by both text and email. Still, the failure of test results to be sent needs to be investigated and corrected at once!

Then, there is the matter of how serious insect infestations in Long Beach are mishandled. We reported such a major carpet beetle infestation to the city code enforcement and building inspection authorities. In response, our so-called property manager merely submitted a zero-balance exterminator invoice, meaning nothing at all was ever done to correct an infestation likely to spread all over our part of Belmont Shore.

After several ignored emails to the mayor, city manager and our councilor, we were finally told that this was a “civil matter” so Long Beach would do nothing at all, after we had endured painful bites, severe itching and increased COVID-19 risks as a result. Here is a second case needing investigation; Long Beach officials should recall that the rule is “three strikes and you’re out.” And a third strike is coming, if not already there. Long Beach truly needs a learning curve!

Eugene Elander


Scorpion Submarine

Place the Scorpion submarine on dry land. Maybe in the dome, which housed the Spruce Goose.

George Bammer


Tenant Evictions

The City Council evicted themselves from the old City Hall for substantial renovation but don’t want property owners to upgrade their investment properties and remove tenants during the process.

I wonder if the Queen will achieve her needed, substantial renovation?

Frank Lloyd


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