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Dear Readers: Please note that this is not a City of Long Beach website and is not paid for nor maintained by taxpayer funds.

If you contact Gerrie Schipske through this site on any matter pertaining to the City of Long Beach, a copy of your contact will be forwarded to her official city email as an official public record.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

US Senate Votes to Move Health Care Bill Forward

In a 60-39 vote just two minutes ago, the US Senate voted to move the Obama health care bill forward to allow discussion and amendment to the proposed health care bill.

This is historic. Finally there will be a discussion in both houses of Congress about the 2000 page bill which proposes to change health care in this country.

I am still trying to wade through the bill and I would suggest readers do also. This is going to be a bloody battle as the insurance and drug industries attempt to scare the stuffins out of Americans about why we should keep things just as they are.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

We need frequent and current crime reports

As the Vice-Chair of the Council Public Safety Committee I made a motion that the Police Department report to the City Council on a quarterly (not yearly basis) about the amount of crime we are experiencing in Long Beach.

Without this data the City Council can't budget or plan in advance for adding officers and other programs to stem crime.

I am sick and tired of hearing my Blackberry go off with yet another killing or robbery or auto theft or auto burglary. Unfortunately, we don't get notices for rapes, sexual assault, child abuse or domestic abuse even though I hear from the victim services community that these crimes are on the rise.

We need to get serious about this problem and not just at budget time. Getting data out to the public will be a first step.

EPA Officials Tell City About PCB Contamination in Wetlands

A couple of weeks ago I placed on the City Council agenda an item requesting the appearance of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at a City Council meeting to brief the council and public about their February 2008 citation of the LCW, LLC the owners of property being considered for a swap with the City.

This past Tuesday, the officials came. To summarize, if you go back to my blog on 9/24/09 ( you can read how I came about learning that the EPA had cited the current owner of the property -- despite the City Council not learning about this fact during real estate negotiations. EPA confirmed what I wrote and it looks it might take quite a bit of time to determine the extent of the contamination (god knows we don't even know what else is there) and the clean up.

You have to ask yourself (I know I did), who in their right minds would get into a real estate transaction without getting full disclosure? And who would go into escrow until all disclosure and remediation is done? Huh?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Ranchos Meeting Well Attended

Close to 100 people attended my community meeting last night to discuss proposals to remove RV's, oversized vehicles and non-motorized, unattached trailers in the Ranchos area. We also discussed the differences in set-backs for fences (they vary from street to street), other traffic improvements needed in the area and a little about fixing up the medians on Spring Street which are in serious disrepair.

City Traffic Engineer Dave Roseman explained the City's new ordinance that allows the Traffic Engineer to determine street by street if oversized vehicles and unattached trailers are appropriate for the size of the street and whether or not they create public safety problems. Because the Rancho's are a self contained and defined area (PD-11) it was thought that we could try this approach on a pilot project basis. To do so, a notice will be sent to all residents of the area telling them what is being proposed and asking if they agree. We will continue to have public meetings until a decision is made about how to proceed.

The discussion of the set backs largely centered over the confusion that even city planners have when asked if a fence can be replaced and at what height it can be replaced. Because this area is unique, fences can be placed in the front yard up to 10 feet --while the limit is 3 feet in other parts of the city.

The Traffic Engineer is also looking at the streets for additional stop signs to slow down some of the speeding that occurs. Missing street signs were also brought up.

The medians are a mess. The brick is raised because of tree roots (there's a surprise...). I am encouraging residents to "adopt" a median and help spruce it up.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Traffic Upgrades To Start in 5th

I am pleased to announce that the City Department of Public Works has contracted with the California Professional Engineering, Inc., to furnish and install new traffic signal equipment at the following locations:
  • Claremore Avenue/Wardlow Road --5th District
  • Clark Avenue/Centralia Street -- 5th District
  • Clark Avenue/Arbor Road -- 5th District
  • Palo Verde Avenue/Metz Street - 5th District
  • Woodruff Avenue/Willow Street -- 5th District
  • Studebaker Road/Los Arcos Street --5th District

Other signals:

  • Paramount Boulevard/South Street
  • Long Beach Boulevard/67th Street
  • Atlantic Avenue/11th Street
  • Pacific Avenue/Spring Street

Construction is scheduled to begin on November 16, 2009 with an estimated completion date of January 29, 2010.

Save Station 18

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