Mayoral Candidate Critical of Queen Mary Handling

By: 
Eric Bailey

With wave after wave of uncertainty hitting the bow of the city’s famed icon, one mayoral candidate is going above and beyond to preserve the legacy of the Queen Mary.

Deb Mozer, candidate for the upcoming November 2022 mayoral election is avid about the preservation of the ship and is highly critical of the city’s handling of allowing the ship to fall into such poor shape.

After surrendering the operating lease in January 2021 as a term of its bankruptcy filing, the City of Long Beach regained control of the Queen from Eagle Hospitality Trust, a Singapore-based hospitality firm.

“For the first time in decades, Long Beach has full control of the Queen Mary. We will be fully engaged in the preservation of this historic landmark and are incredibly grateful for this opportunity,” Mayor Robert Garcia said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times last June.

Mozer doesn’t seem to share the same level of optimism as the current mayor, looking back into recent history into what she believes was willful neglect of the landmark.

“They [the city] would like to do what they did with Urban Commons (the Queen’s operator name before changing to EHT),” said Mozer. “And that’s to let the people think that the Queen May is so far gone that we can’t possibly afford to fix it, and the only alternative is to sell it off to another leasing company.”

A May 2021 inspection conducted by Elliot Bay Design Group, a naval architecture and marine engineering firm contracted by the city concluded that immediate repairs to the vessel just to keep it afloat sit at about $23 million. A 2017 report concluded that as much as $289 million would be needed to bring the ship back to its former glory, making its return as a staple of Long Beach’s vibrant tourism scene after being closed to the public since May 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mozer’s concerns came as the 20 lifeboats draped over the Queen’s side recently disappeared. According to the city’s RFP liaison Ahmed Ali, the boats are being auctioned off to charity through the city’s Planet Bids website

City reports list structural damage as the reason the lifeboats were removed and the city looks to find charitable organizations, museums and historical collectors alike to help preserve history.

As a contributor to Grassroots Long Beach, an organization founded as a watchdog for political corruption in Long Beach’s second-district, Mozer is running for mayor Nov. 8 and puts returning the RMS Queen Mary to its former glory as the forefront of her platform.

Category:

Add new comment

Beachcomber

Copyright 2022 Beeler & Associates.

All rights reserved. Contents may not be reproduced or transmitted – by any means – without publisher's written permission.