First On LBReport.com
Big Bucks Backing TV Ad Blitz With Mayor Foster Boosting Ballot Props A-G
(March 28, 2007) -- Following-up on a story reported first by LBReport.com, we have learned that "Citizens for an Effective Charter: Yes on Props A, B, C, D., E, F & G" -- funded mainly with large contributions ($15,000, $10,000, $5,000, $2,500, $1,500 and $1,000) including many from outside LB -- is paying for a TV ad blitz to influence LB voters to support Mayor/City Council-bundled and backed Propositions A-G on the May 1 ballot.
|The ads feature LB Mayor Bob Foster speaking directly to the viewer (text below).
The ad ran in heavy rotation (at least one per hour on Mar. 28) during Charter Cable cutaways for local ads on the Fox News Channel and on CNN [and probably others].
Screen save, viewed on Charter Cable
Foster's Mayoral campaign also used cable TV ads heavily in the run-up to the 2006 primary and run-off elections, using a series of ads rolled out over a period spanning several weeks. It's unknown if the current ad will be replaced by others as the campaign proceeds (election day is May 1).
Below is the text of the thirty second [standard length] TV spot we saw on local cutaways during Charter Cable's carriage of the Fox News Channel and CNN on March 28:
Mayor Foster: [in a conversational tone while walking at an easy pace as the camera keeps up; pleasant music under] "Hi, I'm Mayor Bob Foster. On May 1, Long Beach will have the opportunity to vote for practical, common sense reforms to update our City Charter. Propositions A through G will make Long Beach city government more accountable to our citizens and A through G will move Long Beach forward and ensure that city government is as effective as possible. Please join me on Tuesday, May 1...
Screen save, viewed on Charter Cable
|[video dissolve to slide]
"...in voting Yes on Propositions A through G."
[music backtimed to button-up.]
As separately detailed and first reported by LBReport.com, "Citizens for an Effective Charter" reported raising a staggering $108,760 as of March 17. It listed an expenditure of $20,590 paid to a Santa Monica-based political polling firm, which with some additional small expenses left it with cash on hand of $87,016...before the TV ad blitz.
The cost of the TV ad campaign isn't known with precision as we post...but that information is expected to become public with the filing of the group's next disclosure form.
The City Charter Amendments, placed on a special May 1, 2007 citywide ballot by a Council majority (Councilwoman Schipske dissenting) and backed by Mayor Bob Foster are:
- Prop A -- gives the Mayor a line-item budget veto, a stronger veto overall and broader Mayoral/Council removal power over Commission members (including the Harbor Comm').
- Prop B - creates a City Hall-chosen "salary commission" with the power to raise City Council salaries to full time levels without requiring full time work and without a vote of the Council. Measure is bundled with creation of an advisory "Ethics Commission."
- Prop C -- lets incumbent Councilmembers seek a third term before term limit restrictions apply (currently two terms)
- Prop D -- lets term-limited Councilmembers' names to be printed on the ballot in a runoff if the candidate qualifies in a primary.
- Prop E -- lets City Hall take park land for non-park purposes without a vote of the people as long as the City Council approves creating additional park land (two for one) at another location
- Prop F -- removes City Prosecutor's duty to prosecute hearings before the Civil Service Commission
- Prop G -- removes outdated Charter provisions
A separate measure, Prop H, would increase the fee received by City Hall paid by firms extracting oil from LB, with the revenue going for public safety purposes.
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