"Long Beach Central Project Area Council" (LB CPAC) Is Launched (In Former RDA PAC's Wake); Independent Group's First Meeting Opposes Title-Loan Business In Wrigley, Pursues Long Term Plans To Improve Long Beach Blvd.


(July 6, 2012) -- The day after colonists declared their independence from King George III, a group of Long Beach neighborhood advocates declared their independence from government funding and established themselves in the wake of the demise of Redevelopment and LB's now-former Central Project Area Comittee.

On July 5, the Long Beach Central Project Area Council (LB CPAC) officially established itself, named an important issue it intends to pursue and offered support for a long term project.

With RDA gone, the group won't receive funding or City Hall staff report, but said in a release that its "goals remain the same. The LB CPAC will focus on the central area of Long Beach. The boundaries of the area are roughly Redondo Blvd. on the east, Ocean Blvd. on the south, the L.A. river up to Pacific Coast Highway and then over to the western edge of the city on the west and Wardlow Road on the north."

The group elected its initial officers (President: Annie Greenfeld; VP: Patricia Paris-Appleby; Secretary: Pepper Russell; Treasurer: Jana Shields; Parliamentarian: Don Darnauer), inducted new members and collected dues. "Many of the members and officers carry over from the RDA CPAC," says the release. "They include renters, home owners, community associations and businesses within the Central Project Area."

Its release says the group is "in the process of filing for non-profit status as well as registering with the state [and] new By-Laws were adopted at the beginning of the meeting."

The first issue the group is taking on involves a title loan business seeking to relocate into the PCH/Pacific area). Following a presentation by neighborhood residents/activists Lee Fukui and Mauna Eichner (who said they and a team of volunteers had collected over 200 signatures opposing the project), LB CPAC approved a motion to write a letter to the Planning Commission, with copies to the Mayor and City Council, encouraging the company to not open at this site.

As for a longer term project, LB CPAC received an update on the Long Beach Blvd Task Force (a subcommittee of the former CPAC and headed by Pat Paris-Appleby) which will continue working with City Hall on improvements to the Long Beach Blvd. corridor. Community activist Evan Patrick Kelly of Hancock University indicated that Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) grant money has been received and an OC-based consultant (Cooper-Carey) has been hired and has completed its initial studies of the Boulevard.

"The project goal is to develop guidelines as well as accomplish actual improvements along the corridor that will improve the quality of life and business climate," says LB CPAC's release. "It will cover Long Beach Blvd. from 10th Street to Wardlow Road. An initial pilot project will be executed from 10th Street to Pacific Coast Highway."

LB CPAC members "expressed excitement that the Task Force and project are continuing without the RDA. Funding will be a challenge and will, no doubt, involve obtaining significant grants," the group's release says.

The LB CPAC will meet on the first Thursday of each month at 6:00 p.m. at Mental Health America, 456 Elm Avenue.

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