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In 5th Dist. Council Runoff, Challenger Dines Draws Clear Line, Urges "No" On "Blank Check" Measure M (Utility Fund Transfer/Diversion) That Incumbent Mungo Voted To Put On Ballot...As She Did With Measure A Sales Tax Increase That Failed Passage In Nearly Every 5th Dist. Precinct


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(May 17, 2018, 8:35 a.m.) -- Drawing a high visibility line in ELB's 5th Council district runoff, challenger Rich Dines has issued a statement opposing General Fund ("blank check") Measure M (utility fund transfer/diversion-rate increase) on the same June 5 ballot where he faces incumbent Councilwoman Stacy Mungo, who voted to put Measure M on the ballot as she did two years ago with the General Fund ("blank check") Measure A sales tax increase...which failed passage in nearly every 5th Council district precinct. [Scroll down for further.]

In addition to the graphic (excerpted below)...


Excerpt from graphic on "Rich Dines for Long Beach City Council" Facebook page

...Mr. Dines put a statement on his Facebook campaign page stating that he wants to explain "the Mistake that Measure M is."

[Dines statement] I want to make this very clear; I am in favor of supporting and increasing funding for police and fire services. This measure however does not do that. Itís a blank check measure, much like Measure A on the 2016 ballot, which wonít have guarantees that police and fire services will see any of the money generated by the tax increase. Just like Measure A, if the city falls behind budget, they would spend Measure M revenue as they see fit and deny police and fire the funding that they deserve, which the voters have expressed.

Just like Measure A, if the city falls behind budget, they would spend Measure M revenue as they see fit and deny police and fire the funding that they deserve, which the voters have expressed.

I am not in favor of raising taxes, especially when there are no guarantees how revenue will be allocated. Many 5th District residents live on fixed incomes and Measure M will increase their tax burden. Improving public safety and addressing the rising crime epidemic in Long Beach are top priorities of mine, but this isnít the right way to do it.

As a General Fund ballot measure, Measure M can be enacted with 50+1% of the citywide vote and would let a City Council majority spend its revemue on any General Fund items it wishes.

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Incumbent Mungo is endorsed by LB's police and firefighter unions (whose members received pay raises in Council-approved contracts after passage of Measure A, when the Council used other General Fund sums effectively freed-up by Measure A.). Mungo also has the endorsment of Mayor Robert Garcia, who operates the political committee currently sending voters mailers urging passage of Measure M using funds provided by LB's police and firefighter union PACs.

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Mr. Dines has also announced that he's scheduled a Town Hall at McBride High School on May 22 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. "I'm going to give an opening and closing statement, and everything in between will be Q&A to better address issues and concerns from the residents of the 5th District," says an announcement on his Facebook campaign page.

But Tuesday May 22 is a City Council night, so -- with vote-by-mail ballots already flying for the June 5 election -- will there be a candidate forum (debate) between challenger Dines and incumbent Mungo? Dines campaign spokesman Thomas Johnson tells LBREPORT.com: "We have been working on trying to set up a debate with her campaign team, but her team has not been able to come up with a date that would work for her."

Developing.

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