News With Extended On-Demand AUDIO

Hear It: It's Five-On-One At First (And Only) LB Neighborhood Forum To Date With Both Sides On Proposed Sales Tax Hike

  • Mayor Garcia Backs Out (His Office Cites Sac'to Lobbying), Sends Ass't City Mgr + Police Chief + Fire Chief w/ "Informational/Factual" Power Point Slide Show, City Staffers Say It's Not Advocacy For Measure And Exit After Q & A Before Opposition;

  • Former Councilwoman Schipske (Co-Signed Ballot Opposition) Responds: "I Love Them Dearly But They're Full of Crap" And Enumerates Reasons To Oppose Sales Tax Hike Ballot Measure

  • As Schipske Finishes, 9th dist. Councilman Richardson Arrives In Coat and Tie With Immediate Past Councilman Steve Neal, They Cite Reasons To Support Sales Tax Hike.

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    (May 19, 2016) -- On May 18, North Long Beach's Deforest Park Neighborhood Association became the ONLY neighborhood or civic group of which we are aware (in a city of nearly half a million people) to present BOTH sides of a June ballot measure, sought by City Hall, that would raise LB's sales tax to 10% (currently 9% in Signal Hill/Lakewood and 8% in most OC cities) for any general fund items that current and Council majorities wish. provides extended on-demand audio below (allowing our readers citywide to hear what was said without filtering or spin.

    [Scroll down for further.]

    Mayor Garcia was scheduled to appear but backed out (cited Sac'to lobbying), and the City sent Assistant City Manager Tom Modica with (in civilian attire) Police Chief Robert Luna and Fire Chief Mike DuRee.



    Assistant City Manager Modica presented a Power Point slide show that he said the City Attorney's office had approved and Mr. Modica described as factual. (To view the Power Point presentation, click here.)

    Prior to begining his presentation, Mr. Modica said he and the Police and Fire Chiefs would field questions, but would leave before the opposition spoke and they did so.



    Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske (mid-2006-to mid-2014), who co-signed the official ballot opposition, present the opposition viewpoint. After seeing city staff's Power Point slide show and hearing their presentation, Councilwoman Schipske said, "I love them dearly but they're full of crap," and enumerated reasons to oppose the proposed sales tax increase and fielded audience questions.

    As Schipske was wrapping up, 9th dist. Councilman Rex Richardson materialized (in a coat and tie) alongside immediate past 9th dist. Councilman Steve Near...and both cited reasons to vote for the sales tax increase.

    LB Taxpayers Association co-founder (and co-author of ballot statement in opposition) Tom Stout was in the audience and challenged a number of assertions made by city staff and Councilman Richardson. provides on-demand extended audio below. The speakers chose not to use audio amplification (that was available) so we had to rely on ambient sound. The audio is less than the CD quality we can deliver but it improves as we reoriented the microphone during Police Chief's remarks. [For a few periods of less than a minute duration, we had to switch audio recording files; those edits are indicated with a "whoosh sound.]

    Click audio links to launch (MP3).



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