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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, June 5, 2010

Meeting at Pan Am Park Produces Good Ideas

Approximately 50 residents living around Pan Am Park in the northside of the 5th District attended a community meeting this morning that I organized to discuss what occurred on Memorial Day at the park.

To discuss the incident, I requested Chief of Police Jim McDonnell and Parks and Recreation Director Phil Hester attend. The Chief and Mr. Hester also brought key staff who are involved in the 5th Council District. City Manager Pat West also attended -- indicating that the city was taking this incident very seriously.

The following was discussed:
  • A large family from Compton held its annual bbq at Pan Am park on Memorial Day. This group has done so for about 18 years without incident.
  • The family did not obtain a permit from the Recreation Dept -- which is required for all groups over 25.
  • A call for service came into the police about an hour before the shooting with a complaint about loud noise. The officer responded and told the group to turn the music down.
  • Residents asked why the officer did not alert anyone that the group appeared to be in gang clothing, drinking beer, parking cars on the grass.
  • An hour later a call for police came in about shots being fired in Pan Am.
  • Police responded and the shooter escaped.
  • The neighborhood wants to know what will be done to make sure this won't happen again on holidays.
  • The police stressed that members of the family group are cooperating with the police.
  • The Chief also stressed that the park is safe and this was an isolated incident of someone with gang affiliation coming to a family event and getting into a fight.
  • The City does not fund park rangers for Pan Am park -- rangers are only in El Dorado Park.
  • Residents were encouraged to join Neighborhood Watch and to call Police or Park Watch if they see suspicious activity.
  • Residents were also encouraged to provide emails so that Councilwoman Schipske can send alerts.
  • It was suggested by residents that permit process be tightened up and that Parks and Rec work with Police to alert them when a group of 25 or more obtains a permit.
As a result of the meeting, I am doing the following:
  • Introducing a council agenda item that requests the permitting process be examined and that public safety safeguards be included such as requiring notice of the Police by the Parks and Rec department whenever a permit is issued to a group of 25 or more.
  • Adding a public safety fee to the permit that will help fund park rangers or a park patrol that can patrol parks and alert the police when there is a problem.
  • Request that signs be posted reminding that a permit is needed and that violators will be fined and not allowed to use the park for a year. Also need to post signs that alcohol is not permitted.
  • Ask the City Prosecutor whether or not the family who used the park without a permit can be cited and fined for the costs of clean up and police services.
  • Assigning my council staff to check out 5th District parks on holidays and to alert police and parks if necessary.

Google Goofs and Steals Clark Avenue From Long Beach

As I work on the historical elements of Rosie the Riveter Park at Conant and Clark Avenue, I refer to Google Maps often, I was very pleased to see that on some Google Maps, Rosie the Riveter Park and Interpretive Center is noted at that location.

What I am very upset to find is that Google has stolen Clark Avenue from Long Beach and renamed it "Columbia Way." Perhaps they confused us with Downey which did rename a portion of Clark Avenue in their city after the Columbia space craft which was built there -- but hey, unless someone slipped it in the wetlands swap, I do no recall the City of Long Beach agreeing to wipe Clark Avenue off the to speak. 

I will ask the City Council to approve a request that Google correct its maps of Long Beach and give us Clark Avenue back.

So in our excitement to be Googlized as a City -- maybe we need to first work with Google keeping what belongs to Long Beach in Long Beach.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Check out OCTA's plans to shut down and fix 7th Street and 22 and 605 Fwys

As a follow up to the community meeting I held a few months ago, I have posted the updated plans of the Orange County Transit Authority (OCTA) (to the right of this posting) to close and fix 7th Street and parts of the 22 and 605 Fwys.

This will obviously disrupt the Long Beach area greatly but apparently we have no choice because without the reconstruction of ramps, this particular area can no longer handle the traffic and car pools that travel there.

A great deal of re-routing traffic through Long Beach -- mostly in the 4th and 5th Districts -- will be painful for a year or so. That's why you might see detour signs already up on Palo Verde -- trying to condition to drivers that this is coming.

If I learn anything else, I will share it.

Information on Smash and Grabs in Ranchos

The following is a copy of an email provided to me and residents of the Rancho's area of the 5th District concerning recent "Smash and Grabs" -- when someone sees valuables in your car and then smashes your window and grabs the goods and goes.

Smash and Grabs in both RD's 665 & 685.  Here is a general breakdown:  
There has been a total of 16 reported incidents that occurred between January 1, 2010 and June 3, 2010.
January - 4     (3 occurred in the same evening)
February - 6  (All occurred in the same evening)
March - 2
April - 3  (2 occurred in the same evening)
May - 1

In all cases, the loss was in plain view inside of the vehicle.
The losses include:
       GPS (4)
       Briefcases/Backpacks (4)        
       Ipod/Cellphone (3)
       Laptops (2)
       Other Miscellaneous items  (2)
       No loss (1)
Approximately 1/4 of the vehicles were parked in the driveway, the others were parked on the street in front of the residence.

We do see this type of activity throughout the city, but  I think the most important thing to tell residents is..... Do not leave anything of value inside their vehicle.  If they see something suspicious, they need to contact dispatch immediately.   There is no real secret to preventing this type of crime, other than hardening the target.  Make sure there is nothing in your vehicle of value, make sure your vehicle is locked and the alarm is set,  increase residential lighting and use motion detector lights, make sure that front yard foliage does not obstruct the view of the street, park as close to your home as possible, and leave your porch light on at night.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Meeting Scheduled for 10 am at Pan Am Park Gym on Sat June 5th

A community meeting has been scheduled for Saturday, June 5th at 10 am in the Pan Am Park gym to discuss the recent shooting that occurred over the Memorial Day weekend in Pan Am Park.

Representatives of the Long Beach Police Department and the Parks, Recreation and Marine Department will be on hand to answer questions.

I encourage residents to come to this meeting -- as there seems to be a bit of misinformation being circulated about what happened and who was responsible.

This was a family bbq (with music, bouncing pads for kids, games, etc.) that has been held in Pan Am park for over 20 years. The family and relatives live in Compton. Apparently some of the younger members of the family brought "friends" and a fight broke out. Someone pulled a weapon and shot a person.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Community Meeting on Pan Am Shooting Being Scheduled

My staff and I are working on setting up a community meeting at Pan Am park on Saturday, June 5. The exact time is being worked out.

In attendance will be the Long Beach Police Department and Parks and Recreation Department.

We will discuss what happened over the Memorial Day weekend at the park and what can be done to make sure it doesn't happen again.

My office will send out a email and hand walk a flyer in the neighborhood to let everyone know the details.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Shooting in Pan Am Park today

LBPD contacted me today to tell me of a shooting in Pan Am park which is at the top of my district adjacent to Lakewood.

"Officers found a male adult and female adult victim with non-life threatening gun shot wounds. There was a large party in park and shooting erupted. This appears to be an isolated incident. Detectives are onscene investigating the incident."

I will get additional information tomorrow at Council, however, I feel it is critical that we review the staffing of Parking Rangers in all of our parks especially during holidays.

Save Station 18

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