|(July 30, 2019) -- It is their new City Hall. Their. new City Hall. We urge LB taxpayers to consistently use the pronoun "their" whenever they write about it on social networks or speak about it in public fora.
Their is the accurate pronoun. LB's electeds used a process that avoided obtaining approval from the LB voters who elected them. Mayors Bob Foster (his name now afixed to the building's new "Civic Chambers") and Robert Garcia led while Councilmembers (with the sole exception of Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske) followed. They imposed a needlessly costly new Civic Center that, perhaps not coincidentally, dovetailed with the interests of downtown LB commercial property owners.
The net result is the largest multi-decade transfer of LB taxpayer money from neighborhoods citywide to downtown Long Beach in the city's history.
Their final Council meeting (July 23) in a Council Chamber designed 40 years ago so the public would sit above its electeds included a genuine "let them eat cake" moment. Nayor Garcia and current and former LB officials ate a cake baked to resemble LB's soon-to-be-demolished City Hall. They did so without inviting members of the public -- who'd come to conduct city business -- to join them. Following the photo op, an attendant wheeled the cake into Councilmembers' lounge (with no indication it might be offered to homeless persons frequenting the area.)
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After conducting a July 29 Civic Center dedication ceremony for public consumption, an invitation-only event was held inside the new Port administration building at someone's cost for specially favored guests. We assume they ate cake there too.
LBREPORT.com has repeatedly decried inequities that we've called a "tale of two cities" in conditions experienced by disproportionately working class and historically disadvantaged neighborhoods within sight of LB's new Civic Center. We've criticized taxpayer-impacting actions by those occupying LB's new Civic Center buildings that in our opinion enable those inequities to persist. In our opinion, it's why upcoming LB elections matter.
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