UPDATE / Campaign Notebook / Perspective

Councilwoman Mungo Responds Re Her Campaign Mailer Labeling $150 Mil For Sidewalks/Streets From "Bond" (Instead of Measure A Sales Tax Increase): She Says (1) Graphic Designer Made Change Consultants Didn't Catch, A Mistake; (2) Says Measure A Wasn't "Blank Check" As Far As She's Concerned And Explains.

[Previous headline] Mungo Campaign Mailer Tells Voters She Made Street Repaving/Park Repairs Top Priorities In LB's "$150 Million Infrastructure Bond"...But There Wasn't One
  • We Surmise It's Campaign Sleight Of Hand To Conceal Money Came From Measure A "Blank Check" Sales Tax Increase Mungo Voted To Put On Ballot That Passed Citywide But Failed Passage In Nearly Every 5th Dist. Precinct
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    (UPDATE May 22, 2018, 3:40 p.m.) Councilwoman Stacy Mungo has emailed a response regarding our May 21 story [text below] regarding a recent mailer from her campaign that indicated $150 million for sidewalk/street repairs came from a "bond" (instead of from the Measure A sales tax increase.)

    Prior to publishing our May 21 story, we sent an email to her campaign email address that indicated our story was coming and asked her to acknowledge, or indicate how she'd amend, the following statements (by us): (1) There was no $150 million bond; (2) The City Council chose to allocate a sizable portion of the Measure A (June 2016 General Fund / "blank check") sales tax increase to a multi-year $150 million "infrastructure plan" that includes sums to repair streets and sidewalks citywide, including the 5th Council district...and we invited Councilwoman Mungo to explain what happened.

    On May 22 at 2:10 p.m., received an email response from Councilwoman Mungo, which we publish below in its entirety. (The text of our original story follows.)

    [Scroll down for further below.]

    May 22 Councilwoman Mungo response (via her personal email):

    1. Thank you for pointing out the inaccuracy in the mailer -- there was no bond, it's Measure A funding. Our graphic designer made a change in the wording that my consultants didn't catch. Everything else we've put out to the voters that talks about the $150 million has been properly sited [we presume "cited"]. Mistakes happen and I'm happy to correct them when they do.

    2. No, this is not accurate. There's no such thing as a "blank check" when it comes to taxpayer dollars as far as I'm concerned. Measure A provided needed dollars to fund necessary services, including Police, Fire and infrastructure improvements. This is nuts and bolts city government services. And I'm proud of the work we've been able to do with that money and I'm proud that I was able to change the formula from "divide by nine" to spending based on need. Since the 5th District has more streets and sidewalks than any other district, we now get more money than ever before as a result. So even though my district did not support the tax increase, they're reaping the rewards from it in more street and sidewalk repair than ever before in the history of the 5th District.

    Thanks for allowing me these clarifications,

    s/ Stacy Mungo



    (Initial story as published)

    "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not to their own facts." Former U.S. Senator/former UN Ambassador Daniel Patrick Moynihan

    (May 21, 2018, 9:25 p.m.) -- So what do you do when you're a City Council incumbent forced into a June runoff (after a little over half of your district's voters voted against you in April) and you voted two years ago to put a sales tax increase on the ballot that brought LB the highest sales tax rate in CA (tied with only a few other cities) that passed citywide but failed in nearly every one of your Council district's precincts?


    If you're 5th dist. Council incumbent Stacy Mungo, you boast about resulting street and sidewalk repairs but pretend the money came from somewhere other than the politically poisonous sales tax increase. Mungo's most recent mailer (excerpt below) tells voters it came from a "$150 million infrastructure bond."

    Excerpt of Mungo campaign mailer; arrow and red-underline by

    To our knowledge, there was no Long Beach "$150 million infrastructure bond." However there was a June 2016 General Fund ("blank check") Measure A sales tax increase, a ballot measure that failed passage in nearly every 5th district precinct but passed citywide. The Council has adopted a legally non-binding "infrastructure plan" to allocate $150 million from the tax over the next several years for projects in multiple Council districts, including street and sidewalk repairs in the 5th district.



    At 3:52 p.m. today (May 21), emailed Councilwoman Mungo at her City Clerk-listed campaign email address and asked her to acknowledge (a) that there is no $150 million LB bond and (2) the street/sidewalk repair money came from the Measure A sales tax increase.

    As of 9:00 p.m., we haven't heard from Councilwoman Mungo. If and when we do, we'll add her response here.

    Of course some 5th district residents receiving the mailer may not care if the money doesn't come from a ficitious "bond," a campaign sleight of hand to camouflage that the money comes from the sales tax hike Mungo voted to put on the ballot and most 5th dist. residents voted against. Of course uninformed residents will simply credit her with the repaved streets, repaired sidewalks and fixed potholes.

    But we're a stickler for facts. Senator Moynihan won bigger elections by respecting this principle: "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not to their own facts."


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