LBReport.com

News

Reform Advocate Juan Ovalle Will Seek To Unseat Two-Term 8th dist. Council Incumbent (Seeking Third Term) Al Austin

Ovalle's campaign release cites his priorities as public safety investment, environmental health/safety and gov't reform and accountability


If LBREPORT.com didn't tell you,
who would?
No one in LBREPORT.com's ownership, reporting or editorial decision-making has ties to 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. LBREPORT.com 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.

LBREPORT.com 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.

(June 26, 2019, 2:25 p.m.) -- Juan Ovalle, a leader in LB's reform movement, has announced he aims to unseat two term incumbent (seeking third term) Councilman Al Austin in LB's 8th Council district.

A campaign release cites Mr. Ovalle's role as a founding board member of the Long Beach Reform Coalition and says he will [release text] "bring a keen eye to scrutinize how our City is run, whether the concerns residents express are being heard, and whether the concerns of big money downtown special interests are being heard louder."

Mr. Ovalle's campaign release doesn't explicitly mention the incumbent, but tacitly targets Councilman Austin's record on several fronts (and in so doing implicitly targets some stances supported by Mayor Robert Garcia who has endorsed Austin's re-election bid.)

Mr. Ovalle says his top priorities will be:

[Scroll down for further.]






  • Public Safety Investment to restore 200 sworn officers cut from LBPD's budget, including the field anti-gang unit "to protect our residents from gang violence, vandalism and rising burglaries."

    [As previously noted by LBREPORT.com, 208 officers were erased, and Council budgets recommended by Mayor Garcia and approved by the Council after June 2016 voter approval of the Measure A ("blank check") sales tax increase, have restored 22 officers. The net result to date leaves LB taxpayers without 186 previously budgeted citywide deployable officers, including LBPD's former field anti-gang unit. (LBREPORT.com coverage here.) As separately reported by LBREPORT.com, city management has agendized a July 2 City Council item seeking approval to pursue a March 2020 ballot measure -- which will coincide with the 8th Council district election -- to continue the Measure A sales tax increase indefinitely for items including (management's recommendation) to "maintain" (not restore) officers. (LBREPORT.com coverage here.)]

  • Environmental Health & Safety: "We must make the air safer along the 710 corridor (a.k.a. the 'Diesel Death Zone') by addressing port, freeway, and refinery related emissions including accelerating the LA/Long Beach ports' Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP) to clean up ship and diesel truck emissions, discontinuing the Port of Long Beach's sulfur piles, coal shed lease, and associated petroleum coke transports through our communities and by lobbying AQMD to discontinue dangerous refinery practices, such as the storage of deadly MHF (modified hydrofluoric acid)

    [Re 710, Austin voted in a Jan. 2018 Committee meeting to support a Metro-staff favored expansion of the 710 with ten freeway lanes over objections by a number of residents and grassroots groups who urged reworking the plan for greater focus on health and community benefits. Mayor Garcia, a Metro board member, went on to vote for the plan. Re MHF, see LBREPORT.com coverage here and here.]

  • Governmental Reform & Accountability: "We must end special interest influence and make city government less arrogant, more accountable, and more transparent."

Sponsor

Sponsor

On January 22, 2019, Tunua Thrash-Ntuk (spouse of LBCC Trustee Uduak-Joe Ntuk) announced her bid for the 8th dist. Council seat. On her campaign website she states that she led a "local non-profit organization" that has "financed and built thousands of affordable housing units, increased capital for small businesses, and advocated for smarter public policy around neighborhood revitalization." .

A little over a week after Ms. Thrash-Ntuk entered the race, Councilman Austin announced he was ending campaigning for a LB-southeast L.A. County state Senate seat (for which he began raising money in the latter half of 2017.) His decision came after LB Councilwoman Lena Gonzalez announced (Dec. 2018) her run for the seat with the endorsements of Mayor Garcia and immediate past state Senator Lara, among others. LB voter approval of Charter Amendment BBB (which the Council voted to put on a Nov. 2018 special election ballot) now gives Council incumbents the ability to seek third Council terms without third-term-and-beyond write-in requirements; Councilman Austin and Councilman Andrews are now both doing so. Mr. Ovalle was a co-signer of the ballot argument opposing Measure BBB, along with former 8th dist. Councilwoman Rae Gabelich.

Councilman Austin's campaign website states: "Long Beach Councilmember. Regional Leader. Problem Solver" and includes the following quote: "I'm proud of the work I've done so far to get results for the residents of Long Beach District 8. Iím running for re-election to continue building on these results and continue bringing together diverse communities, labor, and local businesses to get results that improve economic opportunities for all residents."

Sponsor


Mr. Ovalle's campaign release includes the following biographical sketch:

[Campaign release text] Juan graduated from Cal State Long Beach with a degree in political science. He went on to work for fifteen years at the Long Beach Water Dept. as an administrative analyst, before transitioning to work in finance at Lehman Brothers, and eventually to his current career as, along with his wife, a full-time housing provider. Together, they own and manage a portfolio of rental housing properties in the region.

Juan Ovalle states the following:

"I still remember helping my mother clean houses in the neighborhoods of Long Beach and watching how hard my parents struggled. Through their hard work, and the opportunities provided by this country and this city, we were eventually able to live the lives we dreamt of.

"But now the hard-won nest eggs of so many, like ourselves, are under threat from irresponsible budgeting, forcing us to pay some of the highest local taxes in America. And all the while, we lack sufficient public investment and services, from our parks to public safety, while failing to address our massive liabilities. This is the clear result of the negligence and neglect of unresponsive, callous officials, like the incumbent councilmember.

"I made the decision to run for office not just to help protect those who have invested their lifesavings in Long Beach, but also to help improve the great inequality we see all around us. We must address public safety, housing affordability, homelessness, and lack of community investment, for us all to achieve the Long Beach we dream of. Itís time we had the energetic representation we truly deserve."

Sponsor

Sponsor


Sponsor

Sponsor


If LBREPORT.com didn't tell you, who would? Help keep our independent news with stories like this one alive and growing. No one in LBREPORT.com's ownership, reporting or editorial decision-making has ties to development interests or other special interests seeking or receiving benefits of City Council development-related decisions; or holds a City Hall appointive position; or has contributed sums to political campaigns for Long Beach incumbents or challengers. No one in our ownership, reporting or editorial decision-making has been part of the governing board of any City government body or other entity on whose policies we report. LBREPORT.com 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.


blog comments powered by Disqus

Recommend LBREPORT.com to your Facebook friends:


Follow LBReport.com with:

Twitter

Facebook

RSS

Return To Front Page

Contact us: mail@LBReport.com



Adoptable pet of the week:





Carter Wood Floors
Hardwood Floor Specialists
Call (562) 422-2800 or (714) 836-7050


Copyright © 2019 LBReport.com, LLC. All rights reserved. Terms of Use/Legal policy, click here. Privacy Policy, click here