Statement by the Publisher

How Used CA Public Records Act To Prevent Immediate Destruction Up To Three Decades Of Long Beach History In These City Records is reader and advertiser supported. Support independent news in LB similar to the way people support NPR and PBS stations. We're not non-profit so it's not tax deductible but $49.95 (less than an annual dollar a week) helps keep us online.
(Jan. 10, 2019, 4:45 p.m.) -- A Public Records Act request by and its publisher, Bill Pearl, has prevented the immediate destruction of up to three decades of Long Beach history relfected in internal City records of City Hall's Financial Management Dept., Economic Development Department (focused on LB's dissolved Redevelopment Agency) and City Council districts 2, 4 and 5.

On Jan. 4, 2018 (the same day as reported the Jan. 8 City Council agenda item proposing destruction of the records) publisher Pearl submitted a request under CA Gov't Code sections 6250 et seq. to inspect the records facing Council destruction and to receive copies of those which we might indicate on inspection.'s coverage came to the attention of 5th district Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske (2006-2014), who submitted a records request to inspect 5th district records from the period 2006-2010 slated for destruction; her request was apparently joined by Beachcomber columnist Steve Downing and an attorney who'd represented a plaintiff in a 5th district sidewalk trip-and-fall lawsuit.

At the Jan. 8, City Council meeting, City Attorney Charles Parkin asked the Council to modify the recommended motion to authorize destruction of the records after Public Records requests for the 5th district Council office records (Schipske et al.) and the other City records ( had been completed. The vote was 7-0. coverage here.

To our knowledge, no other LB media outlet considered the imminent discretionary Council destruction of these City records sufficiently newsworthy to merit inclusion on their news pages. (One included the Council action in a brief mention among other items in an email advisory.) considered the records priceless, a potential treasure trove of Long Beach history (see Perspective piece here.)

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Authorizing destruction of the records was a discretionary act, not required by state law. City staff provided no reasons for destroying the records. It simply recited legal grounds on which the Council could authorize doing so. Neither Mayor Robert Garcia nor any LB Council incumbent asked for any reasons. Not one elected incumbent objected. is proud to have saved these records from immediate destruction. Now it's time to preserve them. This will require time, energy and resources. In the coming weeks, we'll let you know how you can be part of this (adjective intended) historic effort to preserve our city's past for our city's future.






Support really independent news in Long Beach. No one in's ownership, reporting or editorial decision-making has ties to incumbent Long Beach officials, development interests, advocacy groups or other special interests; or is seeking or receiving benefits of City development-related decisions; or holds a City Hall appointive position; or has contributed sums to political campaigns for Long Beach incumbents or challengers. isn't part of an out of town corporate cluster and no one its ownership, editorial or publishing decisionmaking has been part of the governing board of any City government body or other entity on whose policies we report. is reader and advertiser supported. You can help keep really independent news in LB similar to the way people support NPR and PBS stations. We're not non-profit so it's not tax deductible but $49.95 (less than an annual dollar a week) helps keep us online.

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