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The Port of Long Beach congratulates the Long Beach Business Journal on its outstanding service for 25 years as the “voice for business” with its informative and insightful coverage of the business community.
www www.POLB.com .POLB.com
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Celebrating 25 Years Of News struction was everywhere: business parks; office buildings;
apartment units; shopping centers; and much more.
LONG B E
It was 1987 and Long Beach was on a roll. Con-
Port of Long Beach facilities continued to expand to meet the growing demand from Asia. The hospitality industry was doing well, but larger convention facili-
H BUSINESS C A
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ties were being discussed – a good problem to have. McDonnell Douglas was churning out commercial aircraft like the DC-10 and MD-80, and the Air Force awarded it a contract to work on the C-17 aircraft. There were more than 25,000 employees working at Douglas alone. The Long Beach Airport was also booming, with commercial airline service provided by Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Jet America, PSA and United Airlines. Passenger traffic had doubled in a few years to more than 1 million people, and was projected to exceed 1.5 million passengers by 1990. There were literally hundreds of stories to tell. It seemed like a perfect time to start a newspaper – one focused on all the activity buzzing around the Long Beach Airport. So was born the idea for the Long Beach Airport Business Journal. The premiere issue was distributed on March 15, 1987, and we haven’t looked back since. It began as a monthly publication with circulation all around the airport and to local aviation businesses. Eighteen months later, it evolved into a citywide business newspaper published 25 times a year: the Long Beach Business Journal. Over the years, the Business Journal has always aimed to tell it like it is. To be informative, factual, straightforward – and always fair. To challenge readers to get involved and speak out on issues impacting them and their city. If we’ve been successful at doing those things over the past 25 years, then we’ve done our job. A former city official referred to us as the “conscience of the community.” We kind of like that. For this anniversary, we looked back at more than 600 editions to carve out a list of some of the headlines, quotes and other items that drove the news each year. We hope you’ll enjoy reminiscing along with us as we prepare for the next chapter in the history of the Long Beach Business Journal.
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Premiere Issue Articles
• Airports In The Year 2000: A Place To Land, Or ‘And Now There Are None’ A opinion piece written by former City Councilmember Marc Wilder, who was also a member of the executive committee of the Southern California Association of Governments
• Reaching Out To The Community: McDonnell Douglas Employees Do More Than ‘Just Build Airplanes” A Herb Shannon-written article about how 42 volunteers from the McDonnell Douglas Community Help and Improvement Program helped renovate a dilapidated Signal Hill bungalow for use as a child care center
• Pioneering ‘Prop-Fan’ Technology For Next Generation Of Jetliners A story written by Lee Craig about United Technology’s Hamilton Standard Division at the Long Beach Airport
• Aircraft Simulators Subject Pilot To All The Motions Of Flight Another Lee Craig article about Flight Safety International at the Long Beach Airport
• Aviation History: What Ever Happened To Daugherty Field? The first in a 10-part series on local aviation history written by Phil Lockwood
The First Advertisers The following companies supported the premiere issue: Airserv; Alaska Airlines; Jet America; Harbor Bank; Hotel Queen Mary; Island Marketing Avalon; Kilroy Airport Center Long Beach; McDonnell Douglas; Paging California; Pawson’s Flowers; PSA; Queen City Bank; and United Airlines.
Other First-Year Stories • Flight Attendant Training Emphasizes Humor, Good Service And Attitude • Atlantic Aviation: Providing First Class Service For Corporate Customers • LifeFlight: When Life Hangs In The Balance • DC-2 Restored To Flight Status By Douglas Volunteers • Long Beach Airport Marriott: The Much-Needed, Full-Service, 311-Room Hotel Opens For Business • Take-out Orders – Marriott In-Flite Services Provides 9,000 Meals A Week To Local Airlines • Catalina Flying Boats Inaugurates Passenger Service To Avalon • Alaska Airlines – Special Emphasis On Service A Major Reason For Success • New, Upscale Kilroy Business Park Opens; Adds Magic To Airport Area • Delta Air Lines Inaugurates Long Beach Service • LA Helicopter Provides Regular Service To LAX • The Right Stuff Man, Chuck Yeager • Farewell Jet America • Long Beach To Baja On Sun Pacific Airlines • Cessna Southwest Service Center: ‘We’re Still In An Evolutionary Stage’ • Airport Noise Levels Down; Pilot Cooperation Up • Hart Air Squadron Training Includes Aerobatic Instruction • Year 2000: Air Traffic Growth Will Support High-Speed Transports • Ticket Counter Musical Chairs • Aviation Community Reviewing Proposed Increase In Rates And Fees • Douglas – Employment Impact Reaches Far Beyond Long Beach Airport Area
Congratulations to the Long Beach Business Journal on their 25 year anniversary! Petrie Financial Group Lisa Petrie, CFP® Senior Vice President–Investments Senior Portfolio Manager UBS Financial Services Inc. 301 E. Ocean Blvd, Suite 1600 Long Beach, CA 90802 562-495-5522 email@example.com
Major Employers In Long Beach 1987 McDonnell Douglas 25,000 Long Beach Naval Shipyard (civilian) 7,000 City of Long Beach 4,550 California State University, Long Beach 4,200 Veterans Hospital 4,000 Hughes Aircraft Company 3,900 Memorial Medical Center 3,500 General Telephone Company 2,300 St. Mary Medical Center 2,000 U.S. Navy (military) 1,500 Long Beach City College 1,400 Grayson Controls 1,400 Wrather Port Properties 1,200 Source: City of Long Beach
LBBJ Thank you for a job well done. Your LBBJ achievements make us all proud of your American enterprise spirit and performance.
YOUR STRONGER VOICE HAS BEEN HEARD. ubs.com/team/petrie CFP® is a certification mark owned by Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. UBS Financial Services Inc. is a subsidiary of UBS AG. ©2011 UBS Financial Services Inc. All rights reserved. Member SIPC. 7.00_Ad_5x3.375_LB0309_PetL
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The Headlines • Airport Business Park’s Tallest Building Tops Out As Final Phase Begun • Candidate Profiles For 5th Council District: Les Robbins, Gerrie Schipske, Craig Spongberg, Tom Stewart
• City Planning Report Shifts Emphasis From ‘Quantity’ To ‘Quality,’ But It’s Not A ‘Slow-Growth’ Plan • End Of An Era; A New Beginning, PSA Merges With USAir • It’s The Second Time Around For Airport Manager Chris Kunze, Who Served As Facility’s Director From 1981 To 1985 • Long Beach Developers Fear Fee Hikes • Port Of Long Beach General Cargo Exports Leap More Than 40 Percent • Ten Days Of Family Fun Highlight Long Beach Centennial Celebration • Thirty-Year Review Of Long Beach Airport Airline History
The Quotes “The ‘Grinning Bird’ is history, I’m afraid. It was fun while it lasted. But the merger with USAir was a good business decision. It enables us to remain competitive. An airline has to grow in order to survive a deregulated environment.” – Bill Hastings, PSA’s director of corporate communications, about the merger with USAir “Long Beach is beginning to get its message across to the world that it has its eyes clearly fixed on the future. Change appears to be everywhere in the city and we point to it with pride. In terms of the future of its economy, the picture that is painted is one of a thoroughly modern city, ready to accept all the trade the world has to offer and all the tourists who can pack a suitcase.” – Marc Wilder, former Long Beach Councilmember “We’re also calling for tougher controls on industry, improved transportation, and long-range land use planning by cities to bring jobs closer to where people live. While these proposals may not be popular with everybody, our terrible air costs residents as much as $13 billion a year in healthcare expenses and property damage. We want to make smog only a memory for old-timers 20 years from now.” – Norton Younglove, chairman, Air Quality Management District’s Board of Directors “The Port of Long Beach is now operating at near capacity. However, the challenge posed by the ever-growing flow of transpacific cargo traffic is being met by the port in a number of ways. Construction has started on a $150 million, 147-acre expansion of container cargo facilities on Pier J. The old Ford assembly plant site and Procter & Gamble property are being converted to cargo areas, and an ongoing land acquisition program in the North Harbor assures that Long Beach will remain a leader among West Coast ports.” – Joseph F. Prevratil, executive director, Port of Long Beach “One of the problems we’re dealing with is that people who live in Long Beach don’t recognize downtown as a place to go and shop. I understand that a high percentage of all charge slips at South Coast Plaza are drawn from cards with Long Beach zip codes.” – Bill Gurzi, chair of the Downtown Long Beach Associates and president of Gurzi & Associates Advertising “I don’t think developer fees are inherently wrong, but many times they are taken out of the proper context and looked at as ways of financing overextended city budgets. If cities think they can fund all of their improvements by placing the burden on the backs of developers, then they are fooling themselves. By increasing fees, they are limiting the number of developers who will build in their city. Fewer developments means fewer dollars. Suddenly, cities adopting these fees will find themselves in a catch-22 situation.” – Greg Berkemer, past president, Long Beach Board of Realtors “The postal service seems to be ready to increase postage fees so it can maintain its current level of service. Rather than an increase in rates – which seems to always be government’s answer – a more efficiently-run operation is in order. And cut Saturday delivery – we can wait until Monday to get that credit card invoice.” – Business Journal Publisher George Economides
etcetera . . . Christopher Davis has been named president and CEO of the Long Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. Davis, who is scheduled to take over in October, holds a similar position with the Corpus Christi Bureau and previously with Oakland. Over the past 10 years, the redevelopment of Long Beach has been well documented in countless newspapers and magazines. Long Beach is no longer “Iowa-By-The-Sea.” And it’s no longer “dullsville.” In fact, Long Beach is exactly what it has claimed to be all along – The International City.
While nearly everyone agrees that something must be done to upgrade the city’s aging infrastructure, the debate over funding is likely to continue. The first thing you notice when you enter David Hauser’s office is a gigantic map covering the entire back wall. As you step closer, you’ll see hundreds of pins stuck in at various points on the map – Buenos Aires, Valparaiso, Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore, Rotterdam, Paris, to name a few. “The pins indicate places I have been to,” he explains. Traveling on business is just one of Hauser’s duties as president of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners. “Some people jog or bicycle for a hobby. The port is my hobby.”
Phil Lockwood is the preeminent authority on the history of aviation in Long Beach, particularly the 64-year-old Long Beach Airport facility. From hands-on experience and personal observations that have covered several decades, to friendships with aviation pioneers, to direct involvement on city committees and commissions, Phil Lockwood has recorded enough information on local aviation history to fill hundreds of pages. From March 1987 through January 1988, Phil shared with our readers historical facts, observations and opinions about the people and events that during the past eight decades have shaped aviation in Long Beach. We’re proud to reprint the following 10 articles in their entirety in this “Salute to Aviation” edition of the Long Beach Business Journal distributed at the July 30-31 airport open house presented by the Douglas Historical Foundation. Note: Unknown at presstime, Lockwood passed away July 29.
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Congratulations on 25 years of telling it how it is!
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The Headlines • City Council Approves Park And Recreational Facilities Impact Fee • City Council To Consider Bixby Knolls Business Assessment District Proposal
• Community Development Department Announces North Long Beach Storefront Rebate Program • Conservation Corps Of Long Beach Set To Begin Operations In July • Demand For MD-11s Still High As Orders Continue To Roll In • Downtown Long Beach Rail Transit Loop Construction Under Way • Ernie Kell, City’s First Citywide Elected Mayor, Announces He’ll Run For Another Term In 1990 • Local Women Executives Speak Out About Work Force Attitudes • Long Beach Begins New Convention And Tourism Trade Cultivation Efforts • Long Beach’s Future: Reflections Of A Progressive Past • Looking To The Future: A Planner’s Concept For The Airport Terminal Facility • More Than 50 Aircraft To Be Displayed During Salute To Aviation ’89 • Phase I Of Westside Improvement Project Nears Completion
The Quotes “One of the biggest problems we’re having right now is working out the details on the financing. This is an enormously detailed and time consuming process, and it’s one that requires careful planning. It’s not something we can rush through.” – Gary Voigt, director of general services for the City of Long Beach, discussing the proposed expansion of the convention center “It’s hard enough to look into the future and hit a moving target that is only one type of development like an office building. But to try and fire at two moving targets – a void in the office building market and a void in the hotel market – was just that much more complicated.” – Stanley Cohen, who with North American Taisei Corp., built the 20-story Shoreline Square office tower and the adjoining 500-room Sheraton hotel that opened in 1988 “I would like to expose the orchestra to as many different styles as possible and to present some of what was not done in the past. My commitment to American works is very strong as well. As a whole, the season’s programming leans toward the virtuoso side of what is utilized from the musicians. This comes from the young and vital presence of the orchestra.” – JoAnn Falletta, new conductor of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra discussing the 1989-90 season “We really didn’t begin to see the widespread development of mini-malls until the first oil embargo of the mid 1970s. It was at that time that several gas stations closed. This created a lot of vacant or available property, so many of the mini-malls are built on these recycled properties.” – Long Beach Zoning Officer Dennis Eschen about the increasing number of strip centers, or mini-malls, springing up around the city “The key right now is pricing. Long Beach has always been considered a ‘cheap date’ compared to other coastal cities.” – Leslie Munger, president of the Long Beach Board of Realtors and a broker with Matlow-Kennedy Corporation “The basic effect is that the city has chosen what has previously been referred to as a ‘zero path 65 cumulative noise goal.’ The basic impact of that is to essentially prohibit any further flights. And, in fact, absent a restraint from the judge, might well result in a decrease in flights which the judge has so far ordered Long Beach not to do.” – John Lyons, attorney representing area airlines suing the city, on a proposed ordinance governing noise at the airport “I don’t feel that when I come on the council floor each week that I can look to Mayor Kell to provide leadership . . . that he’s going to take a position.” – 4th Distict Councilman Dr. Tom Clark, who announced he was running for mayor against incumbent Mayor Ernie Kell
etcetera . . . Among the 30 members of the Leadership Long Beach Class of 1990 were: Jack Hinsche, Judith Ross, Tonia Uranga, Rosemary Voss, William Henry Walker and Charles “Jerry” Westlund. Attention to detail is already a trademark for the Greater Los Angeles World Trade Center, which opened last December. From washing the windows of cars that are valet parked to a computerized information system providing directions to a tenant’s suite to an executive health and fitness club, the facility has brought a touch of class to Long Beach.
In his mid-year budget and financial report, Long Beach City Manager James C. Hankla told councilmembers that he expects the city to continue progressing towards a healthier financial state in spite of expected cuts in federal and state spending. If air quality management district officials get their way, industries using fuel oil and diesel fuel may soon be forced to switch to clean-burning natural gas. Earlier this month (March), AQMD boardmembers requested that staff develop a rule requiring replacement of fuel oil and diesel with natural gas or other clean-burning fuels by 1996 in electric power plants, and by 1997 for other industries. According to the board, a prohibition of diesel and fuel oil would bring substantial reductions in smog.
Long Beach dentist and community activist Dr. Jim Serles has announced that he will once again run for the city’s 3rd District city council seat in next year’s election. The 1990 campaign will mark Serles’ third attempt at the seat. In 1982, he lost by less than three percent of the votes cost. During the 1986 primary, he came within 98 votes of avoiding a runoff, and in the general election he lost by a one percent margin. The recent incident involving Don Jackson, a black sergeant on administrative leave from the Hawthorne Police Department, and Mark Dickey, a white Long Beach police officer, has rocked our city. Dr. Martin Luther King always encouraged his followers to use passive resistance. Don Jackson appears to have chosen an action on Dr. King’s birthday that was aggressive in nature. Don Jackson, and NBC, owe Long Beach an apology.
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The Headlines • Airport-Area Assessment District To Fund Traffic Improvements At 14 Intersections • City’s New Noise Ordinance To Impact Douglas MD-11 Program; Council Ignores Firm’s Request
• Despite Very Poor Sales Tax Revenues, City Manager Hankla Remains Optimistic About Long Beach’s Retail Future • HarborPlace Tower Tops Out; Project Two Months Ahead Of Schedule • Local Tax Measure For Additional Police Officers Considered • Long Beach International Auto Show Rolls Into Town With ‘Hottest’ ’91s • Mayor Kell Issues Statement About City’s Contract With L.A. County Sheriffs • Signal Hill Auto Center Site Preparation Underway; Six Dealerships Confirmed • The City Budget And Taxpayer Dollars: City Employee Fringe Benefits A Major Expenditures And Referred To As The ‘Cadillac’ Of Retirement Systems • The Walt Disney Company Releases Its Preliminary Master Plan On Port Disney
The Quotes “I can believe that they (the auto dealers) never understood the rules. They heard only what they wanted to hear. The one basic rule that has never changed is that the city’s general fund could not, and would not, guarantee the financing for an auto mall project.” – City Manager James C. Hankla about dropping the concept of an auto mall in favor of a retail power center “Everyone is pointing to gloom and doom. But, customers realize it’s the holiday season. Our customers who see Buffums as their source will buy here, and we hope they will continue to shop with us. Second, trends are changing in fashion and we’re moving into ladies ready-to-wear, which will attract new career women. We will retain our other lines, however. Third, we’re getting new point-of-sale equipment, cash registers that are faster and more efficient. That, and our employees’ good attitude, should be worth experiencing.”– John Duncan, president/CEO, Buffums, a Long Beach-based department store with 16 stores in Southern California. A few months later, the 87-year-old chain closed its doors “Growth through the harbor will not come without challenges. All landfill proposals must be accompanied by projects designed to mitigate, or compensate for, any environmental disruption. In return for the 147-acre Pier J expansion, the port created a 116-acre wetlands enhancement project at the Seal Beach National Wildlife Reserve. The $7 million project will provide fish hatcheries and nesting areas for several endangered species of birds to compensate for the natural marine habitat lost to Pier J.” – C. Robert Langslet, president of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners “I am concerned about the no-growth attitude that seems to be gaining strength in the city. Growth is going to happen. The issue is whether or not we can control it and make it work to everyone’s benefit.” – Jean Bixby Smith, president, Bixby Land Co., during an interview with the Business Journal “Disney’s goal is to listen and to work toward building the kind of consensus that will make the vision of Port Disney a reality in Long Beach. The chamber’s goal is to facilitate the development of this process. Clearly, our city is in a state of transition . . . some call it a ‘renaissance’ period or the beginning of a ‘new city’ – a time for new prosperity, exciting challenges and careful planning. Along with these plans will come the development of important standards for quality of life and economic vitality that surely will be exceptional by any measure.” – Jane Netherton, president/CEO of International City Bank and chair of the Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce “The city must negotiate the best possible deal for the citizens of Long Beach. I have told Disney officials that as soon as negotiations can show that the city is adequately compensated, traffic problems are mitigated, the environmental impact has been mitigated, and it has been determined who is paying for what and how much revenue will be deposited into the general fund, I will be in a position to evaluate the proposal and determine my position to support or not support the project.” – Part of a statement read August 7 by Mayor Ernie Kell following the passage of a Long Beach City Council resolution complimenting The Walt Disney Co. for its preliminary master plan for Port Disney
etcetera . . . Construction is under way on the city’s newest luxury high-rise, The Pacific, one of the few residential developments on the coast to have its own private beach. Located at 850 E. Ocean Blvd., site of the former Pacific Coast Club. Completion is targeted for May 1992. The Long Beach Redevelopment Agency has given preliminary approval for a 250-unit condominium tower on Ocean Boulevard at Pine Avenue at the site of the former Jergins Trust building. A new law goes into effect February 25 that bans smoking on all flights in the continental United States.
Business Journal Perspective: The brief, two-paragraph story appearing in the August 2 edition of USA Today about The Disney Company’s “Port Disney” proposal concluded with the following statement by Long Beach Mayor Ernie Kell: “The deal has got to do more than give (Disney chief executive officer) Michael Eisner a bonus.” That statement, which we verified with the USA Today reporter, was in poor taste, especially from the top elected official of our city. The Gutenberg Festival – the biggest trade show west of the Mississippi – is coming to Long Beach March 22 to 25, bringing with it 45,000 vendors, exhibitors and other attendees. The only complaint from organizers is that along with the show’s growing success is the shrinking availability of space at the Long Beach Convention Center.
Interview with Bob Autrey, owner of Long Beach BMW and C. Bob Autrey Mazda dealerships, the first to move from Long Beach into the new Signal Hill Auto Center: “The Long Beach auto mall negotiations actually began when John Dever was city manager (1977-86). At the time, a group of Long Beach auto dealers – myself included – proposed that the city develop an auto mall on the site that is now the Kilroy Airport Center. With its proximity and visibility from the 405 Freeway, we all thought the site would have been the perfect location for an auto mall. Unfortunately, Dever rejected that idea. A couple of years later, we entered into negotiations again with the city for a site near Redondo and Willow. This time, following a lengthy and involved negotiation process, the city sold to an outside developer at the last minute because he was offering a dollar more per square foot. When that happened, I realized that I could not rely on the city to help me find a location.”
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The Headlines • Blue Ribbon Task Force Formed To Save L.B. Naval Base And Hospital • City Council Moves Forward With Smoking Ban
• City Council Opts To Raise Utility Users Tax From Current 7% To 10% • City Council Takes Aim At Port Profits • Council Committee Offers Compromise Low-Income Housing Plan • Councilman Harwood Claims Mayor Kell Ignores 9th District Residents For ‘Important’ Commission Seats • Downtown Long Beach Becoming Quite The Hot Spot For Restaurants • Long Beach City Council Approves Purchase Of Building For Health Department • Long Beach Receives Coveted Designation As State Enterprize Zone • Long Term Marketing Strategy Needed To Ensure Convention Center’s Success, Says Long Beach Hyatt General Manager Jerry Simmons • New Performing Arts Center At CSULB To Open March 1993 • Port Disney’s Malmuth Discusses Key Issues Facing Proposed Project • Signal Hill Auto Center Revving Up; Nissan Dealership Breaks Ground And Two Others Close Behind
“The businesspeople down here belong to the Downtown Long Beach Associates because it was voted in by the property owners. So, if the people don’t like it, they should get involved and change it. The DLBA is a reflection of its membership. I don’t see that my role is to re-direct or re-do what the DLBA has done.” – Susan Shick, executive director, Long Beach Redevelopment Agency “It has two flaws: it lacks accountability, affordability and equity; and it is a low-income housing program without any low-income housing in it. . . . Hopefully, the elected officials will stand up for the families of Long Beach and resist the disproportionate influence of the business and real estate communities.” – Dennis Rockway, an attorney with the Legal Aid Foundation of Long Beach, on a draft ordinance related to low-income housing “The time you come out and pay my invoices is the time you can come out and interfere in my business. It is a question of freedom of choice. Next you will be controlling the level of cholesterol in the food we serve or whether the cushions on the seats are appropriate for customers with back problems.” – Gene Rotondo, co-owner of Legends Restaurant & Sports Bar, after the smoking ban was passed by the city council “I am trying to enlighten my colleagues, who seem to have a shallow understanding of traffic demand management, so that we don’t have to reinvent the wheel.” – 5th District Councilmember Les Robbins discussing the draft of the Transportation Element of the Long Beach General Plan
“I would describe the City of Long Beach as the great non-earning asset in the world of real estate. It was there, but no one had capitalized on it. The reasons I was taken by Long Beach were its freeway accessibility, clean air and the Pacific Ocean.” – John Cushman III, developer of Landmark Square “During the past several years, the Business Journal has written numerous editorials encouraging elected officials to do more to support our city’s largest employer, Douglas Aircraft Company. It seems, though, that every few months, the city throws another obstacle at Douglas that makes it more difficult for the company to operate a successful business. Many of these are nit-picky-type ordinances that are more of a nuisance than anything else, although the dollar impact does add up. However, the city’s latest attack digs deep into Douglas coffers. The recently passed increase in the utility users tax will cost Douglas an additional $775,000 annually.” – Business Journal PublisherGeorge Economides
etcetera . . . Following two hours of heated discussion over which councilmember had the biggest individual budget, and pushing aside requests by one member to do an itemby-item review, the city council voted 6-3 to raise taxes and fees rather than reduce expenses. This in order to eliminate the staff-reported $24 million deficit in the city’s General Fund. The tax hike was opposed by Harwood, Kellogg and Robbins. The city council agreed to review the increase in two years. A September 23 public hearing by the redevelopment agency was a forum for input on the draft environmental impact report for the proposed development of the Los Altos Shopping Center on Bellflower Boulevard.
What’s going on at the Port of Long Beach? What are its revenues? What are the benefits of the port to Long Beach taxpayers? How has the port’s boundary, or footprint, changed in the past 15 years? What is the benefit-to-negative-impact ratio from port activities? These and other questions have been raised by city councilmembers as they seek ways to balance the city budget, a budget which could be facing a $17 million shortfall in the 1991-92 fiscal year.
It was 3:46 p.m. on Sunday, September 15, 1991. More than a thousand McDonnell Douglas employees, family, friends and aviation buffs crowded the perimeter of the Long Beach Airport to witness the inaugural flight of the C-17 airlifter. The huge U.S. Air Force/McDonnell Douglas camouflage-painted aircraft headed east on Runway 12, climbed out over the Pacific Ocean and along its assigned test rack, then circled inland to land at Edwards Air Force Base after a successful flight.
Details of the first phase of a mammoth, mixed-use development planned for a 13-acre site in Downtown Long Beach were recently released by the developer, Pike Properties Associates. First presented in 1988, the master plan outlines a $1 billion, four-phased project featuring a total of 530,000 gross square feet of multi-story residential, hotel, mid- and high-rise office and street-level retail space.
With an exterior lighting sculpture shining brightly miles high into Long Beach skies, Landmark Square officially opened its doors May 8 as the city’s newest office building. Complete with hand-finished granite – quarried in Spain, fabricated in Italy and shipped through the Port of Long Beach – the 24story, $100 million project is the first development completed under the city’s “One Percent For the Arts” program.
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The Headlines • After Nearly 10 Years, United Airlines Leaving Unfriendly Skies Of Long Beach • Business Journal Urges Mandatory One Day Off Each Month Without Pay For City Employees
• Developers Beware: Incomplete Or Wrong City Staff Information No Excuse For Not Paying Fees and Permits • Disappointment, Anger Stirred In Disney Wake; Councilman Kellogg Says ‘Disney Is Just Another Casualty Of City’s Unwillingness To Help Business’ • Downtown Central Business District Reaches Turning Point As Revitalization Efforts Spark Signs Of Recovery • Employment Outlook For California Remains Dim, But Future Is Brighter For Self-Starters • Frustrated City Council Asks Harbor To Limit Trains • Mayor Kell Claims Signal Hill Cut A Bad Deal With The Auto Dealers, Price Club • On-Dock Rail Yard Plan Not On Same Track As City Council • Petition Being Circulated To Stop Long Beach Arena ‘Whaling Wall’ Mural • Plan Taking Shape For Revitalization Of Long Beach Boulevard; 10 ‘Big’ Ideas Presented • Queen Mary Down To The Wire: Controversy Rages • Switching To The L.A. Sheriff Deputies: Would Long Beach Really Save Money? • Water Commission Rescinds Controversial Pay Raise; Questions Remain
The Quotes “Clearly what we are proposing is a plan that will take us into the next century. We’re looking at the next 50 to 100 years at least of shaping the city, its downtown and its waterfront in a way that’s unique to Southern California if not the world.” – Architect Stan Eckstut on the Queensway Bay Development Plan “When Councilman Harwood talks about city budgets, he needs to review his own budget. This past year, when we all worked together to lower our budgets, I decreased my budget by 5.3 percent while Harwood’s increased eight percent. If he does not think district offices are effective in helping citizens, why doesn’t he close his own district office in Houghton Park.” – Mayor Ernie Kell on 9th District Councilmember Warren Harwood, who criticized the mayor for not mentioning city’s budget shortfall in the State of the City Address
“Last year at this time, all the experts were saying that the recession would end as soon as the Persian Gulf war was over and that we would be experiencing full economic recovery by December 1991. Because the economists were so far off target, it would be wrong to assume that anyone can predict when the recession will end.” – City Manager James C. Hankla during a January 28 city council discussion on the city budget “I think that people need to regain their trust in government. This election is about integrity. It’s about an incumbent who has been in office 16 years and is only now discovering that there are things that need to be done. This election is about finding solutions and engaging in action.” – Alan Lowenthal, in his first effort at elected office, running in the 2nd City Council District against Councilmember Wally Edgerton “I believe that the City of Long Beach needs to place its focus on where people are located – in the bedroom communities like Bixby Knolls, Wrigley, Los Altos and Belmont Shore. We have a fine downtown and everyone is very proud of what the city has accomplished there. Now we need to shift our attention to the other 48 square miles of the city.” – Don Barney, chairman, Bixby Knolls Parking and Business Improvement Association/owner Barney’s Family Restaurant
etcetera . . . The recession, increasing globalization and the November national election have clouded almost everyone’s crystal ball. And with interest rates at an 18-year low and the stock market roaring into the new year, how the financial services industry will ultimately fare in 1992 is anyone’s guess. After surviving a second year of bad real estate loans and crumbling interest rates, banks and savings and loans will spend much of the first part of 1992 digging out and shoring up reserves. It looks like the Queen Mary will stay in Long Beach at least three more years. After a four-and-a-half-hourlong debate, the city council accepted an offer by the harbor commission to regain control of the luxury liner.
Ninth District Councilmember Warren Harwood is asking that 10 percent of the net income of the harbor department be transferred to the Tidelands Fund, but he might be in for a long, drawn-out battle. Harbor Commission President Joel Friedland said, “Just because the city finds itself upside down on the economy, doesn’t indicate a bailout by the harbor department because the city council wants it to be that way.” To truly appreciate the elegance of the 397-room, $66.3 million Long Beach Hilton that opened January 6, from its magnificent atrium lobby to its spacious corridors leading to meeting and banquet rooms to the carefully selected paintings and sculptures throughout the complex (all original art commissioned specifically for the hotel), you need to experience it first hand.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will officially come into existence on February 1, 1993, when the Los Angeles County Transportation Commission and the Southern California Rapid Transit District merge into one board – the MTA.
The Long Beach City Council, on March 17, authorized the city manager to establish a retail sales tax incentive program. The program’s purpose is to encourage large-scale retail development, increase revenues generated by retail sales and stimulate private investment.
Twenty years from now, Long Beach Boulevard, between the San Diego Freeway and Ocean Boulevard, will have only a faint resemblance to the way it looks today. As one of the major projects of the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency, the area is being carefully studied so that the agency can determine what needs to be done and what is feasible.
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From our organization to yours, Congratulations on
of covering the Long Beach Business Community
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The Headlines • Alameda Corridor Project In Jeopardy; Ports, Southern Pacific Disagree On Value Of Right-Of-Way • Battle Over Port Money Heats Up; City Attorney Confirms $14 Million Figure
• City Council Votes To Utilize Naval Properties For Economic, Educational Development Rather Than Transitional Housing For The Homeless • Convention Center Expansion Contingency Fund Is Spent • Firefighter Overtime Costs Expected To Reach $6.5 Million • Historical Kress Building To Be Renovated; Plan Calls For Mixed-Use • Long Beach Law Firm Keesal, Young & Logan Purchases Union Bank Building • Long Beach Marketing Plan Calls For A Shift In Strategy To ‘Hometown Feel’ • Marine Advisory Commission Created; City Attorney Issues Caution • Prevratil Gets Queen Mary; Expects To Open January 22 • Rebirth Of Downtown May Have Begun With AMC Theater Complex • Redevelopment Proposal Causes Distrust By Many Residents, Business Owners • School Board Increases Residential Development Fee To $2.65 Per Square Foot • Sheriff’s Deputies Leaving In Three Months; Residents Fearful • Waterfront Plan Envisions Amusement Park, Aquarium • Westside Businesspeople Seek Major Changes In Redevelopment
The Quotes “Clearly what we are proposing is a plan that will take us into the next century. We’re looking at the next 50 to 100 years at least of shaping the city, its downtown and its waterfront in a way that’s unique to Southern California if not the world.” – Architect Stan Eckstut on the Queensway Bay Development Plan “The Asian market – to include China – will experience the highest economic growth rate of any region over the next seven to ten years. Its potential is staggering.” – David Hinson, executive vice president of marketing, Douglas Aircraft Company “There’s a mystique in this city that says if you come from out of Long Beach, then you must be more intelligent, more talented and more qualified than someone who lives in Long Beach, and I say that’s nonsense.” – June Mulcahy of Mulcahy Consulting saying that most city contracts are going to firms outside the city “What’s really going on here is an attempt to stall something in hopes that something will change. This is nothing but whining and sniveling at its worst.” – 5th District Councilmember Les Robbins about 2nd District Councilmember Alan Lowenthal, who lost a committee vote on extending medical and family leave benefits to unmarried domestic partners of city employees, but did not present the outcome of the vote to the full city council for action
“Lakewood and others have criticized us for not looking for a manufacturer to occupy the Naval Hospital site. I would like to ask Lakewood officials what they have done lately to attract manufacturers to their community? I am not sure how many they’ve attracted, but I would guess none! The highest and best use of the Long Beach Naval Hospital property is retail – plain and simple. We’re going to do everything we can to make that happen.” – Long Beach City Manager James C. Hankla responding to officials of Lakewood and other cities who did not want a retail power center developed on former naval property at Carson Street and the 605 Freeway “How do you spell relief? Downtown merchants and restaurateurs have three letters for it: AMC. The 16-screen, 3,600-seat theatre complex opens this Friday, December 18, and with it the hopes of downtown businesspeople that thousands of movie-goers will flock to their stores and dining establishments before and after taking in a show. AMC expects to attract 30,000 viewers a week.” – Business Journal caption accompanying a Page 1 photograph on the opening of the new AMC Pine Square 16 on Pine Avenue between Broadway and 3rd Street
etcetera . . . Beverly O’Neill walked into the Business Journal offices last week to personally announce that she is running for the office of mayor of Long Beach. The recently retired president and superintendent of the Long Beach Community College District brings to eight the number of “officially announced” candidates for the city’s top post. “Our city is faced with significant problems, and most certainly the lack of leadership and creative vision being the primary obstacles to building a great community,” O’Neill said. 573 respond to fax-back survey about Long Beach Airport commercial flights. Overwhelming support expressed for more flights, better utilization of airport.
Attorney Bill Pearl has launched a petition campaign for local residents to sign his initiative that would increase Long Beach police, firefighter and paramedic protection.
Gov. Pete Wilson officially opened the I-105 Glenn Anderson Freeway on October 14, bringing to a completion the largest and most expensive public works project ever attempted by the California Department of Transportation.
Spurred by escalating trade between the People’s Republic of China and the United States, as well as a desire to strengthen relationships with customers in China, Port of Long Beach officials announced last week they have opened offices in Beijing and Shanghai. The action earns Long Beach the distinction of being the first U.S. port to open offices in China.
The 1993-94 proposed city budget includes 25 positions with a base salary of $100,000 or more and another 28 positions are paid between $90,000-$99,000. The Los Altos Center seemed like a lost cause until the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency stepped in. Now it is a redevelopment project area, which means that millions of dollars of property tax revenue may be spent on its revitalization.
Long Beach again made national headlines after Councilman Doug Drummond was taped-recorded saying he supported Fidel Castro’s quarantine of people with AIDS and stating during a speech: “Do you want to know why I don’t worry about gay activity? I’m gonna give you a clue. So far in San Francisco, over 10,000 have died. In Long Beach, over 1,000 have died. I’m not concerned about that community in terms of being a political threat.”
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3 The City of Signal Hill congratulates the LBBJ on 25 years of reporting the people, events, and issues that have shaped the region.
T C A OW N
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Congratulations to George Economides and The LBBJ Staff For Their 25 Years of Excellence in Reporting and Community Support.
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• Battle Over Naval Shipyard Heads To Washington, D.C. • Bixby Knolls Members Clash – Fate Of Association Unclear • Cities Across The Country Face January Deadline For ADA Compliance; Long Beach Turns To Voters • Contracting With Private Firms For City-Held Jobs: Report Leaves Council Incredulous • Decision Time: The Mayoral Race, Act I, Scene II – O’Neill Or Grabinski? • Hanging By A Wing And A Prayer: Will Long Beach Airport Have Any Flights Left By End Of Year? • Harbor Makes Final $5 Million Payment To RDA For Convention Center; Contribution Reaches $91 Million • Lakewood Threatens Legal Action To Block 605 Power Center Development • Long Beach Proposal On Fast Track As ‘Aquarium Craze’ Sweeps The Country • Mum’s The Word For Many Diners, But City Hall Officials Have A Beef • Plans For Electric Trolley On Anaheim Street Stopped In Tracks By MTA • Smokers, Non-Smokers Butt Heads Over New City Law
The Quotes “I think what you can see is why things aren’t working down here. It’s not even the system; it’s got to do with this rancor coming from the mayor’s office. There’s no cooperation, there’s no coordination there’s no goodwill, and this kind of working against the council is why we’ve been split. I don’t think it’s just the system.” – 9th District Councilmember Warren Harwood about Mayor Ernie Kell during a discussion on whether the mayor should have a vote “The panoramas, the views, the convention center – this has it all. It’s an incredible natural gift, this shoreline. Disney saw that.” – Michael Lapin of Shoreline Village just prior to the city council approving the Queensway Bay Development Plan “They want us to bail them out of their spending binge. I think that at times the port has not displayed proper use of its money.” – Jay Winter, Steamship Association, about raising tariffs 10 percent across the board to fund the Alameda Corridor project and pay to purchase Union Pacific property
“The Westside is a gem. We have some fine entrepreneurs and business owners who are very informed. That project area committee doesn’t like government as a dictator, as a boss. When they’re not calling the shots on their own destiny, they bitch and moan the spit nails. I commend them on that.” – Don Westerland, chair, Long Beach Redevelopment Agency
“Quite frankly, the President has lacked credibility – especially among members of his own party. He’s probably brought more political groupies into the White House than any other president, and they’re not necessarily able to run the government.” – Congressman Stephen Horn about President Bill Clinton during an interview with the Business Journal
“This is the most difficult budget I’ve ever participated in, and I’ve been through nine. We’ve had to face the needs of the community and be cognizant of the fiscal reality and, for the most part, we’ve kept the doors open. But as bad as it is, this budget is merely a shadow of the things to come.” – Long Beach City Manager James C. Hankla on passing the Fiscal Year 1995-96 City Budget, which back then ran July 1 to June 30
“It seems ludicrous to us to impose an insurance premium on people for a short period of time or to start building on stilts. We just don’t agree with that. We want FEMA to review the information, but not impose the tax.” – Don Knabe, chief of staff to L.A. County Supervisor Deane Dana, regarding the Federal Emergency Management Agency imposing a mandatory fee on Long Beach homeowners for flood insurance
etcetera . . . During a presentation at the May 31 city council budget hearing, City Auditor Gary Burroughs said he thought the city could possibly save a substantial chunk of money, perhaps $6 million to $8 million after an independent audit of some of the healthcare benefits, pension and workers’ comp costs to the city. He asked councilmembers to approve $150,000 in order to audit certain employee benefits.
On April 12, voters approved by a 2-1 margin Proposition K to ban smoking in indoor restaurants, hotel lobbies and bowling alleys, and in twothirds of bars and outdoor restaurants. Voters also passed Prop M – the Campaign Reform Act.
Magnolia Industrial Group formed, encompassing 300plus businesses from Pacific Coast Highway, the L.A. Flood Control Channel, Anaheim and Magnolia to address issues such as crime, trash, unpaved alleys and homeless people. It became officially incorporated in October.
The first order of business is to say congratulations to Beverly O’Neill on her election to be the mayor of Long Beach. She assumes the position the middle of July. Long Beach needs O’Neill to do a good job – make that a great job – so everyone must be supportive.
Grand Prix Founder Chris Pook proposes the development of a 250-acre automotive R&D and motorsports center known as Transwest Research & Development Complex to be located in both Signal Hill and Long Beach. Boundaries: 405 to north, Gundry Avenue to east, Willow and 29th Streets to south and Atlantic Avenue to the west.
The Business Journal city employee salary list shows 23 people with an annual salary of $100,000 or more, topped by the city manager at $155,786. The Long Beach Redevelopment Agency heard a presentation on a “Market Study and Historic Preservation Feasibility Study” commissioned by the agency months ago. Bringing in anchor retail tenants for an area near Broadway and Pine on the Promenade was the focus of the presentation.
In order to move the proposed Pier J expansion forward and avoid a lawsuit by four cities (Vernon, Lynwood, Compton and South Gate), Long Beach Harbor Commissioners agreed to change some language in the environmental impact report. Eight words were all that were needed to cause the cities to drop the suit. It said the truck traffic to be generated by the Pier J expansion will “use the Alameda Corridor once it becomes operational.”
orby nth or to he rt. re to ck he he e-
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The Headlines • Airport Settlement Reached, But Neighbors Press On • Bixby Knolls Residents Learn The Art Of Playing Politics For Parking And Redevelopment Needs
• Cultural Heritage Commission Draws Praise, Criticism In Role Of Preserving City’s Past • Hankla Proposes Tapping Into RDA And Harbor Funds To Serve As Backup Pledge For Aquarium Bond Offering • Have City Officials Become Addicted To The 10% Utility Tax At The Expense Of Economic Development? • Input Sought From Residents On Retail Mix For Los Altos Mall • Lakewood Chamber Reportedly Near Bankruptcy; Directors Resign En Masse • Mike Donelon Regains 7th District Council Seat After Special Election February 7 • Redevelopment Agency Budget Sends Shock Waves Through Central Area PAC Members • The Aquarium May Be Best Answer, But At What Cost? • The Gloves Are Off In The Fight To Save The Long Beach Naval Shipyard • What A Relief? Alameda Corridor Project Not Expected To Ease Truck Traffic On Long Beach Freeway
The Quotes “I think if you have pride in your community, you will have confidence in it. I think improving the perception is probably half the battle. Myself, as well as many others, have tried very hard to set a positive direction for the city. We recognize there are problems, but we also realize this city has great potential.” – Mayor Beverly O’Neill in an interview with the Business Journal marking her first year in office “It’s official! For the first time in its 84-year history, the Port of Long Beach is the number one container port in the United States.” – Carmen Perez, president, Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners “I would like for us, as a city council, to have a civil, mature reasoned discussion because the topic can become sensitive and personal, and this should be more about what makes good government sense than anyone’s personal goals. I don’t want to get down in the dirt on this.” – 1st District Councilwoman Jenny Oropeza on redistricting council boundaries “The Long Beach Naval Shipyard is once again threatened with closure. In two previous rounds of base closures – 1991 and 1993 – the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRACC) put the Shipyard on its ‘hit list,’ but voted to keep it open. This time may be different. It may be the Navy itself, and not the BRACC, that recommends closing the Shipyard.” – California State Assemblyman Steven T. Kuykendall in a guest commentary for the Business Journal “If an agency such as this (redevelopment) doesn’t believe in us, in what we’re trying to do for our community . . . then things just continue, you continue to have decline and blight and every now and then you have riots. But we care, we’re committed and we want an improved city.” – Leon Wood, chairman, Atlantic Avenue Project Area Committee (PAC), at a redevelopment agency meeting after learning of a huge reduction in the PAC’s budget due to a large drop in tax increment dollars “Susan Shick (executive director of the redevelopment agency) or someone made a tremendous error. Agency and staff never consulted the project area committees (PACs) as they should have. A change in the budget should be reviewed by the PACs.” – Alan Burks, chair of the Mid-City PAC, at the same meeting as above “This is something that unifies us. We are creating something that our children can be proud of – this is a real legacy.” – 2nd District Councilmember Alan Lowenthal on the city council’s approval for the designs of the proposed Aquarium of the Pacific “They didn’t want their retailers to have to compete with a tax-subsidized project. We said, ‘Okay.’ Then they said they didn’t want us to build an outlet mall. We said, ‘Okay.’ Then they said they didn’t want it to be 100 acres. And we said, ‘Gee whiz, the target keeps moving here.’’’ – City Manager James C. Hankla on discussions with the City of Lakewood on the proposed Power Retail Center at the former Navy Hospital site on Carson Street and the 605 Freeway
etcetera . . . While the key economic indicators – sales and use taxes, business license fees and transient lodging taxes – showed a 10% increase in revenue over a 10-year period, revenue from the utility users tax skyrocketed 167%.
Former Long Beach Harbor Commissioner Joel Friedland has filed suit against the city for damages he alleges occurred when he tendered his resignation to the harbor commission to Mayor Beverly O’Neill. The suit was filed February 2. In his claim for damages, Friedland alleges that he sustained “personal injuries . . . to his reputation due to libel and slander, deprivation of business and trade disparagement, emotional distress, interference with business and livelihood and punitive damages.”
Before boardmembers of the Downtown Long Beach Associates move on a possible merger with the Long Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau, they deserve to have all their questions answered. They need to fully understand the consequences of such an alignment. Most importantly, they should not rush – or be rushed – into a decision. Rather than limiting its options, the board should examine the role of the DLBA and look for improvements from within the organization. They may discover that nothing is broken.
It was a long time coming, but the last chapter in the Alaska Airlines versus City of Long Beach lawsuit about noise and flights at the Long Beach Airport should be settled soon. On April 11, the Long Beach City Council approved a negative declaration that satisfied the airlines and the city in their differing claims.
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The Headlines • America’s First And Only Bike Station To Open In Downtown Long Beach • Budget Task Force Again Recommends Mandatory Furlough Of Employees; Questions Use Of Consultants
• Director Of Phoenix Zoo, William Iliff, Named To Lead Aquarium Of The Pacific • Domestic Partnership Drama Plays Out At Council And Committee • Futuristic Monorail Project Under Study For Downtown, Queensway Bay • Ice Dogs Ready To Fire Up Long Beach With The Excitement Of Professional Hockey • Long Beach Harbor Commission And City Council Discuss Alameda Corridor Settlement Behind Closed Doors • New Los Altos MarketCenter Excites Customers And Employees • Port Of Long Beach Lures COSCO To Build First Terminal In U.S. • Proposition 218 On November Ballot Challenges Cities’ Ability To Raise Taxes, Fees Without Voter Approval • Redistricting Process Begins; Number Of White Residents Has Declined More Than 20% In The Past Six Years • Sports Complex Opponents Go To Court, Hit The Streets With Ballot Measure • St. Mary Medical Center To Merge With Catholic Healthcare West
The Quotes “This is a landmark piece of legislation that ranks in historical significance with the nailing of the ‘golden spike’ which created America’s first transcontinental railroad in 1869. That event linked communities across the country and opened communication and commerce. Today, telecommunications reform hastens the arrival of an information superhighway, linking communities around the globe and leading us again toward new realms of exploration and discovery.” – Red Keith, president, GTE California, on the February 8 signing of the Telecommunications Reform Act of 1996 “They are the fastest growing steamship company in the world, and they serve the fastest growing economies in the world. We’ve been working on the Naval Station property for some years, and this is the first terminal they’ve leased in the United States.” – Don Wylie, director of trade and marketing services for the Port of Long Beach, on the lease with China Ocean Shipping Company “We find it unacceptable that City Hall would allow the closure of a major street for the sole benefit of one merchant, no consultation or authorization from any of us had been sought validly. As it was in the past, last week’s closure resulted in substantial losses of revenue and aggravation for our customers and clients. Specifically, we have become irreversibly dissatisfied with our representation through DLBA (Downtown Long Beach Associates) and at this point not willing to accept its current leadership.” – Letter signed by seven PIne Avenue merchants sent to the mayor, city manager and council representative claiming they were unaware Pine would be closed for a private party for Nike and catered by Mum’s restaurant “If somebody wants to speak out against something, they’re called rude or rabble-rousers. The city council are trying to squelch all the opposition by telling us to sit down and let them decide what’s best for us. They’ve more than doubled the size of this project.” – Long Beach resident Ann Cantrell before a group of 500 people gathered to hear about a proposed El Dorado Sports Complex “The bottom line is there is not a darn thing we can do about it. They – the city council – seem to know what’s best for us, from a sports complex to a re-entry center.” – Val Lerch, vice president of the North Long Beach Business Association “There is a proliferation of the use of private consultants for management related tasks. No doubt consultants are needed and cost effective where specific expertise is required or to manage activities outside the normal realm of . . . management activities. Nonetheless, the use of consultants to provide ‘unbiased’ information for general management activities suggests that the managers are either incompetent or lack the confidence of senior management and/or the city council.” – Mayor’s Budget Task Force in its report on the 1996-97 proposed city budget “I feel very fortunate to be in Long Beach. Over the last year there has been a tremendous amount of potential around here from Shoreline Village, the Aquarium and the convention center. You might say I am riding on the coattails of change.” – Steele Platt as he readies to open the Yard House and Oink’s Diner at Shoreline Village
etcetera . . . In November, Dr. Robert Gumbiner, who started FHP Healthcare, opens the Museum Of Latin American Art at 628 Alamitos Ave., site of the former Hippodrome skating rink.
With 100 trucks, each carrying 40,000 pounds of concrete, roll up to Long Beach’s downtown shoreline today, it is not a siege, it’s the “first pour.” Construction crews of the Aquarium of the Pacific are pouring the first of nine concrete slabs.
At the April 16 city council meeting, members discussed the methods used to lure Vons and Orchards Hardware Supply into the Bixby Knolls Shopping Center. Although the discussion was not a dispute over the use of the Retail Sales Tax Incentive Program, it did raise some philosophical arguments over giving retailers a break on their sales tax payments to the city.
The Business Journal joined companies such as ARCO, Cigna, Pepsi, The Gap, and USAir as a corporate sponsor of the “Call to Action,” Gov. Pete Wilson’s Conference for Women, set for November 14 at the Long Beach Convention Center. Last year, more than 7,000 women attended the annual event. Speakers include Dr. Laura Schlessinger, Betty Ford, Lesley Stahl and Sharon Stone.
Three months ago, the city council voted to allow Volunteers of America to open a reentry center (rotating 50 male inmates who have a probability of parole) at 2233 E. 69th St. Since then, a nearby business owner has put his property up for sale, another business is looking to relocate to Paramount, and a property owner has gone into foreclosure. Furthermore, another building was sold for $100,000 less than its original value.
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The Headlines • Area Realtor Associations Consolidate; Long Beach Boulevard Office Closes • City Council Approves Sweet Deal For Loehmann’s To Come To Marina Pacifica,
But Retailer’s Stock Price Has Plummeted 70% In Four Months • Ernst & Young To Prepare Financial Analysis For Queen Mary Proposal; Study Does Not Include Engineering Report Of Vessel’s Seaworthiness For Trip To Japan • Huell Howser Taxpayer Lawsuit Seeking $50 Million For Port’s Naval Station Development • Loss Of Auto Dealers During Early ’90s Has Zapped Long Beach Sales Tax Revenue • Queensway Bay Developer Selection – OliverMcMillan – Stirs Controversy • Sparks Ignite At City Council Over Motion To Consider Full-Time Council • Surging Commercial Real Estate Market Fueled By Investor Interest; Speculative Development Expected Soon
The Quotes “You can’t look out over the city at this point and not feel positive about its future. We will continue to see progress in every part of Long Beach this year. – City Manager James C. Hankla in the Business Journal’s Economic Outlook 1997 issue “There is a lot of technology out there and customers want access to it. Companies that can package that technology and present it in an easy-to-use, cost-efficient manner, will be successful.” – Andrien Zeumault, director of marketing for GTE California “You know, this is probably the greatest revolution in humankind’s history and we’re living in the middle of it. You look back at the early, early books, written with quill pens and then look at what’s going on today with computers, with the Internet. It’s an even greater revolution than the Guttenberg Press and moveable type. It’s hard, though, to bring people with you through change, especially when they’ve already been through so much. But I like that aphorism, ‘Change is painful, but suffering is optional.’” – Cordelia Howard, director of library services, City of Long Beach “At a recent council meeting, I and other city officials were criticized for traveling to Washington, D.C., to attend the Presidential Inauguration at taxpayer expense [Business Journal story]. Upon reflection, I have concluded that, at least in my case, [the criticism was justified]. Although I received an official invitation from the White House and my trip was perfectly legal, I feel that I did not meet my own standards of propriety, i.e., did my trip benefit the citizens of Long Beach in any way? The answer is no. By common definition, my trip was a junket. Accordingly, today (May 23) I have delivered to the city auditor my personal check in the amount of $1,282.63 as full reimbursement for my expenses.” – 9th District Councilmember Jerry Shultz, City of Long Beach “On January 1, 1998, 10 million electricity customers throughout California, including 232,000 in Long Beach, will begin choosing their power suppliers for the first time. The final phase of a four-year journey from monopoly to competition in the state’s electric utility industry will begin. But here in Southern California, this promising journey toward customer choice, competition among power suppliers, and lower electricity prices could be cut off at the pass.” – Bob Foster, senior vice president, Southern California Edison Co., critical of a proposed megamerger between the parent companies of SoCalGas and San Diego Gas & Electric “Pine Avenue should be flourishing. But it’s not. In fact, if action isn’t taken quickly, it may be closer to unraveling and returning to its woeful days of not too many years ago, than being the city’s prized jewel. It has been in a slow, steady decline for the past year. . . . The ‘rejuvenation’ of downtown has been discussed for so many years that one becomes dizzy just thinking of all the ‘plans’ that have been reviewed, debated, accepted, rejected, reconfigured, mishandled or controlled. Depending on who the players are at any given time, the plans change – and so do the promises.” – Business Journal Publisher George Economides responding to Mayor Beverly O’Neill’s State of the City Address where she stated “Downtown’s Pine Avenue continues to flourish with its trendy night spots and outstanding restaurants.”
etcetera . . . City staff salaries reach grand proportions. Proposed budger includes $8.2 million in salary and fringe benefit increase; 43 employees – up 33% from current year – at $100,000 base salary. The recent proposal by Boeing to acquire McDonnell Douglas has left the city holding its collective breath. Although Boeing officials have stated that the company plans to continue utilizing the Long Beach plant for aircraft assembly and production, until the merger is complete and a definitive decision is made, the fate of the factory remains uncertain.
Dealers leaving Long Beach for the Signal Hill Auto Center cost Long Beach dearly. From 1986 through 1990, approximately 16% of the city’s total retail store sales tax revenue was attributable to new vehicle dealers (includes used cars sold at the dealerships). The city’s general fund prospered, receiving about $2.6 million annually. That total was cut in half during the next five years: $1.3 million per year, and the percentage of total retail store sales from new vehicle dealers fell to 8.6% from 1991 to 1995. As Joseph Prevratil’s proposal stands, the Queen Mary would be part of Tokyo’s planned World Expo, and would remain at a specially built $30 million wharf for five years, as both hotel and gambling casino. The ship would then return to Long Beach fully restored.
The conversion of the Long Beach Naval Station into a container terminal for China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO) has all the elements of a Fellini screenplay. Why is the city council shelling out nearly $3 million in incentives to attract Loehmann’s (department store to locate at Marina Pacifica) when cities in Seattle, Tustin and Ft. Lauderdale didn’t have to provide any incentives?
What started as a discussion about the city’s new streetlights at the February 18 city council meeting, ended with a demand by the audience for an apology from 5th District Councilmember Les Robbins after he made this statement: “I won’t bore you with the details, because I don’t think you’re smart enough to understand them.” So spoke Robbins in a public rebuke to West Long Beach Association President Nick Sramek at the council meeting.
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The Headlines • Area Health Providers Tighten Belts As Industry Copes With Increasing Demand, Fewer Dollars • Aviation/Aerospace Industry Cleared For Take-Off in ’98; Investment And Profitability Return
• Downtown Marina Boat Owners Protesting City Policy, Declaring Discrimination
• El Nino Proving Costly For Region’s Builders;
Storms Forcing Delays And Expensive Repairs • Following Years Of Delays, Wrigley MarketPlace Retail Project Breaks Ground
• Henry Toboada Named Long Beach City Manager
• NFL Reportedly Interested In Proposed Stadium In Carson;
Project Backed By Former Disney Chief Michael Ovitz
• Preservationists, Port, Navy Reach Agreement On Naval Station – $4.5 Million Fund
To Be Established By Port If Historic Buildings Are Demolished • ‘To Instill A Sense Of Wonder, Respect And Stewardship For The
Pacific Ocean And Its Inhabitants’ – The Aquarium Of The Pacific Opens
• Rainbow Harbor, Parking Structure Open On Time And On Budget • Westin Name Joins Long Beach Family Of First Class Hotels
“This (Queensway Bay development) is going to make us a world class city. I know people say that money could be diverted to other things like streets and sidewalks, well, that’s coming. We’ll get to it.” – 3rd District Councilmember Doug Drummond after developer asks for a 60-day extension on its exclusive right to negotiate
“Interesting thing about Long Beach . . . Out of the 50 largest cities in California in terms of philanthropic giving, we rank 48th. Fresno is 49th. I don’t know where all these tightwads came from in Long Beach, but they ought to loosen up a little bit.” – Dr. Robert Gumbiner, who opened the Museum of Latin American Art in late 1996
“We have no discretion in this matter. The law is that the public has a right to know what public business is being conducted. The exception is the closed session. We only go into closed session when we’re legally entitled to, and if we’re not legally entitled to, we don’t.” – Assistant City Attorney Robert Shannon during a discussion with the Business Journal on the Brown Act “I’m flabbergasted. These arguments are specious and illogical. We are not talking about passing judgments on these people. This is the law of this city; the people have voted for this. The arguments against the general fund money was part of the ballot argument. But the people have spoken and for us not to act on this is totally irresponsible.” – 2nd District Councilmember Alan Lowenthal comments directed at other colleagues during a council debate on candidates receiving money from the general fund for their campaigns, per Prop M passed in 1994 “We did say when we started in the early ’70s that if the city fathers embraced this event it could be used as a marketing and promotional tool to turn this city around. If we have played a small part, that’s wonderful. We’re certainly not looking to take praise for it.” – Christopher Pook, founder, president/CEO, Grand Prix Association of Long Beach “This is someone who is seeking a position of responsibility who can’t take responsibility for himself. He used his official title to intervene in a legal matter. That’s a serious lack of judgment. Plus, the Long Beach City Prosecutor’s office already has a bad reputation in how it treats women, and here he is, supporting the kind of business that demeans women.” – City prosecutor candidate Gerrie Schipske on fellow candidate Evan Braude, a special assistant city attorney in L.A., who used official stationary to support a topless bar in getting an alcoholic license
etcetera . . . The partially completed $1 billion Queensway Bay project and Downtown Long Beach’s Pine Avenue retail and dining corridor have earned Long Beach the honor of being named one of Southern California’s “Most Livable Communities,” by the Southern California Association of Governments. The Long Beach City Council, on June 15, passed a resolution affirming the certification of an EIR which had been passed by the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners on May 26 for development at the former Naval Station/Shipyard as a marine container terminal.
The Long Beach City Council, on June 30, approved a 388,000-squarefoot shopping center for the former Los Altos Drive-In site. The controversial project has been debated for more than a year, with residents protesting the original proposal as submitted by the developer, California Drive-In Theaters, Inc. In that proposal, retail plans included a 24hour Super K-Mart.
Three years ago, the Long Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau took on a new responsibility. The CVB agreed to administer a downtown organization called the Downtown Long Beach Associates. On August 19, Linda Howell DiMario, president/CEO of the CVB, told the DLBA Board of Directors that the CVB would not renew the contract for services. On January 27, Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. opened its new $8.5 million, 60,000square-foot, state-of-the-art aircraft paint facility at the Long Beach Airport.
There is a plan under development to market the City of Long Beach nationally. And that plan has a theme: “Opposites Attract.” But that message does not attract the city council. Following critical comments from elected officials, the marketing group that came up with that theme, including the Long Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau and Grand Prix Association, with the involvement of Mayor O’Neill, will “rethink” the message. City Manager James C. Hankla, also part of the marketing team, said: “I believe this has real potential for the city. The opposites are not meant to attract each other, but businesses and tourists.”
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The Headlines • AirTran Airways Receives First Ever Boeing 717 During September 23 Ceremony • Epson America Relocating Headquarters To Long Beach
• ‘Fantastic’ Way To End The Year: Carnival To Relocate Cruise Operation To Long Beach • Following Another Extension, Queensway Bay Project Now Set To Open May 31, 2001 • Grand Opening Of The Alpert Jewish Community Center Slated For March 21 • Long Beach Towne Center Grand Opening June 25-27 • $1.4 Million Grant Allows Cal State University, Long Beach To Move Ahead With Final Phase Of Technology Park • Outlook Grim For Crude Prices; Operators Cut Staff And Production • Parcel J Tenants At Airport Say Construction Delays Could Force Them Out • Perspective: Wrong Foot, Henry. City Manager Taboada Steps All Over Himself In Attempt To Possibly Municipalize Electrical Service • Petition Drive Takes Aim At Rolling Back Utility Users Tax • Planning Commission Voices Concerns With Constant ‘Piecemeal’ Changes To Queensway Bay Project • Sea Launch Countdown: First Commercial Satellite Scheduled To Lift Off From Equator On October 10 • Transportation Impact Fee Issue Comes To The Forefront During Appeal Hearing • Y2K Preparations Helping To Root Out Pirated Software
The Quotes “Our number one goal in 1999 will be the development of the Naval Complex. It’s crucial for us to develop that property. All our tenants want more space.” – Richard Steinke, executive director, Port of Long Beach “Most people who visit the city today can’t imagine what this place was like back then. I like to think we had something to do with its revitalization.” – Chris Pook, founder of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on its 25th Anniversary
“I think the success of the Aquarium has been one of the most outstanding developments. We had been expecting 1.6 million visitors [the first year] and we ended up with about 1.85 million. The fact that they had 53,000 memberships makes them one of the most well supported aquariums in the world. In addition, we had the opening of the Long Beach Towne Center, the Wrigley MarketPlace and Long Beach Town Square retail projects. . . . Unemployment is at its lowest point in about 20 years.” – Mayor Beverly O’Neill in July when asked to name some of the more positive developments of the past year
et at at h a x r nal -
“It’s clear they [city staff] didn’t want anyone to have an opportunity to review this thing ahead of time. Once we read the documents, we knew why. They didn’t engage in due diligence. They didn’t check the provider’s reliability and emergency response capabilities.” – Bob Foster, regional manager, Edison International “What a concept. Government and the public working together on compromise. We have to end the madness of us and them.” – 4th District Councilmember Delano Roosevelt during a September city council meeting on cutting the utility users tax, which failed to draw a fifth vote to avoid the continuation of a petition drive “The Business Journal seldom agrees with Councilwoman Jenny Oropeza, but at the October 5 council meeting she asked very good questions about the financial package for Queensway Bay. She was right when she said if this (city council) was a board of directors of a business, it would not approve the deal. The question is, do councilmembers understand what they approved?” – Business Journal editorial on the Queensway Bay project, which had experienced constant delays from the original plans to open one year after the Aquarium opened. The latest city council action gave developer DDR/OliverMcMillan until May 2001
etcetera . . . Yet another parcel of property in Southeast Long Beach is being targeted for development. This time it’s the site of the Long Beach Seaport Marina Hotel. The owners, Taki-Sun, Inc., are proposing knocking down the hotel to make way for a new hotel, possibly a Ritz-Carlton, and 300 upper-end apartment units.
The city council voted last December that, effective January 27, 1999, the health department would conduct food inspections of eating establishments and post for public review a summary report in each establishment inspected that provides a checklist of violations, if violations exist.
Two years ago, when the vote was taken on a development agreement for the Queensway Bay project downtown, former 2nd District Councilmember Alan Lowenthal said he wanted the project to have a “Wow!” factor. Lowenthal was talking about architecture and excitement, but at the March 23 city council meeting, the Wow! factor for Queensway Bay appears to have become, “Wow! Why is this taking so long?”
The redevelopment agency held a meeting February 8 to discuss the downtown Long Beach Plaza mall. Steve Hopkins, who developed Los Altos MarketCenter, spoke about his company’s recent purchase of the downtown mall. Hopkins said, “We just bought the damn thing” and noted that, while a “definite re-configuration” is needed, there have been no decisions on whether or not the mall is to be demolished.
Musical Theatre West says, “Hello, Long Beach!” The musical theater group, which spent the past 22 years performing at the La Mirada Theatre, is moving to Long Beach and will be performing at the Carpenter Center on the CSULB campus. Developer Dan Selleck has been trying for two years to develop the lot at the corner of Studebaker Road and Pacific Coast Highway in Southeast Long Beach. The parcel is known to most locals as the vacant lot that becomes a pond during rainy months. But the California Coastal Commission determined that the Selleck property was partially a wetland. It also noted that the Long Beach Local Coastal Plan did not have a definition of wetlands for protection purposes.
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• Downtown Confidential: Public Safety Is Not The Issue; Downtown Is Safe • Local Economy, Quality Of Life Boosted Through Strong Commitment By The Port Of Long Beach To The Community • Long Beach Plaza Developer DDR Moves Forward With Environmental Process • Mayor’s Technology Advisory Committee Builds Partnerships In The High-Tech Business Community • Modern Day ‘Cowboy And Indian’ Battle Looms On Bixby Hill – Residents, Foundation At Odds Over Rancho Los Alamitos Master Plan • Occidental Petroleum Takes Control Of Thums Long Beach; In Preliminary Talks To Acquire Tidelands Oil Producer TOPKO • Queensway Bay Project: Developer OliverMcMillan Declares Business Journal Unfair; Refuses Further Comment • Queensway Bay Project Thrown Another Curve – Partnership In Long-Awaited Development Dissolving • Queensway Bay Project: Despite Increasing Opposition, Project Moving Forward; More Businesspeople, Residents Speaking Out Against Plan • Sea Launch Moving Headquarters To Long Beach From Cayman Islands • Utility Users Tax: 70% Vote To Cut Tax In Half Over Five-Year Period
The Quotes “My responsibility is to preserve open space. Our role should be to conserve and to be more pro-active in open space preservation.” – Phil Hester, director, Long Beach Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine “We are at a point of unprecedented societal and economic change. No other institution is as well-suited to adapt to these changes. That’s where our real value lies. The key is to make our legislators realize this and urge them to fund the colleges accordingly.” – Jan Kehoe, Long Beach City College superintendent/president
“I am really strong in my praise of the work that the community did in this effort. This was very much a bottoms-up process. Not only was it representative of all aspects of the community, but we literally had thousands of people testify, or use the Web site, to participate in this process. That feeling of community involvement is what distinguishes this plan from any other plan that we’ve done in the past. I’d like to say that the spirit of community pride – which I think the mayor has done so much to instill during her term of office – this is a continuation of that. It was like a full– Doug Otto, local attorney and the facilitator of the Long Beach 2010 Strategic Plan time job for these volunteers.” “This has been a field of broken promises. From the cost to the city to the leasing rate to the date of the groundbreaking.” – 7th District Councilmember Ray Grabinski on his opposition to the Queensway Bay project
“The city manager puts forward one budget and the city auditor puts forward another. What’s a layman to do? How are we to believe what the true numbers are? We need a credible budget process to find out what money we have and where it’s being spent.” – Dennis Carroll, 4th District council candidate
etcetera . . . 89 Long Beach city employees now make $100,000-plus in base salary. The number has more than doubled in three years. Catholic Healthcare West’s recent announcement [June] that it intends to close Long Beach Community Hospital by year’s end continues to stir controversy throughout the city as groups mobilize in an effort to keep the hospital open. Utility users tax: Long Beach businesses, residents are paying three times more than the average of the 88 cities in L.A. County. A Business Journal study shows difference is much wider than first thought. Long Beach is also higher in statewide comparison.
According to a Business Journal investigation, during a 13-month period ending this past August, the L.B. Unified School District paid more than $57,000 in utility users tax to the city. Problem is, the district is exempt from the paying the tax. During the past two decades, the Port of Long Beach has contributed more than $430 million to landmark projects that support Long Beach residents and the economic development of the city. These projects include two that have been pivotal in making downtown Long Beach a leading tourist destination. The port helped to finance the expansion of the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center and the construction of the Aquarium of the Pacific, home to 10,000 sea creatures, including the transparent moon jellyfish.
A Business Journal review of nearly 2,000 pages of local campaign statements has uncovered questionable donations, shoddy reporting by some candidates, a candidate who hasn’t responded to nine letters from the city clerk’s office, and several other items. The Long Beach 2010 Strategic Plan consists of the following five focus areas – neighborhoods, youth and education, public safety, business growth/work force development and the environment – plus an overarching bridge to aid implementation of each focus: technology.
In September, eight of nine councilmembers and the mayor stated they support a cut in the utility users tax. Several of those councilmembers now oppose a reduction claiming there is no outcry from citizens or business to cut the tax. They’re dead wrong. And no matter how much money local unions pour into a campaign, voters will pass the ballot measure. The empty lot at the corner of Ocean Boulevard and Pine Avenue has ghosts. The ghost of the historic Jergins Trust Building, torn down after controversy in 1988. The ghost of Harry Mow’s Century West development, a needlelike condominium high-rise that never broke ground. That development, too, was steeped in controversy. And beneath the property lies the ghost of Long Beach past – a tunnel, once sporting little shops for pedestrians on their way from landside to seaside.
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The Headlines • Anatomy Of The Long Beach Gas Crisis – Who Knew What And When • Aviation Community Questions Residential Component Of 261-Acre Boeing Realty Project
• Boeing’s C-17 Celebrates 20th Anniversary; 235 Airlifters Delivered • City Management Staff, 200 Strong, Seeking A Voice; Consider Forming A Union • Condo Conversion Program May Be A Solution To Past ‘Cracker Box’ Mania • Construction Underway At CityPlace Mixed-Use Project • Ethics Committee Idea Grows Arms And Legs; May ‘Run’ In 2002 Election • JetBlue Inaugurates Flights To Fulfill Long Beach Airport’s Potential • New CVB President/CEO Steve Goodling Hits The Ground Running • New Retirement Benefits Legislation Could Add To City’s Future Budget Concerns • Queensway Bay Agreement: Trading Seven ‘Deal Points’ For 15 More Months • Reduce, Recycle, Recover – Keeping Long Beach Clean • Retailers Remain Optimistic Despite Warning Signs Of An Economic Slowdown • Signal Hill City Council Expected To Approve Mercedes Benz Move From Long Beach • Signal Hill Emerging As One Of The Southland’s Most Desirable Residental Communities • Walker Building Coming Back To Life As Upscale Residential Units • Write The Name, Punch The Chad – O’Neill Wants 3rd Term
The Quotes “I am very pro-development . . . but I would rather see no development than poor development. . . . The Queensway Bay [project] – nobody will tell you that’s quality development. There’s no reason for this thing moving forward other than some kind of hidden agenda someplace.” – Jeff King, owner of three downtown restaurants
“When I became the CEO of Earth Tech, I was the only woman CEO in the ER500 (Engineering Record) and I still am in 2001. But let me tell you, there’s no glass ceiling here. See, I never try to tell an engineer I know what they do. Because I don’t. I also try to surround myself with people smarter than I am, and I trust them unless they show me I can’t. And I manage by team.” – Diane Creel, chairman and CEO of Long Beach-based Earth Tech “Bottom line is, word’s out on the street: don’t go down to the Magnolia area [to commit a crime] because you’re going to get busted. Crime has dropped by almost 80% since we implemented the program back in 1995. . . We want to clean up the area more. We want to continue our security program. We just want to maintain our area, upgrade it as best we can and make it more desirable to continue our low vacancy factor.” – Dick Young, president of the Magnolia Industrial Group, an assessment district of 300 business in West Long Beach formed in 1995
“They’re capable of going beyond servicing the market to creating a new one. I’ve heard a lot of people say, I had no intention of going to New York, but at that price, I’ll take the family and go.” – Airport Manager Chris Kunze about the city’s newest air carrier, JetBlue Airways “During last year’s debate over reducing the utility users tax, a Business Journal investigative article showed that the Long Beach Unified School District was paying the tax. They were supposed to be exempt from paying. Now, a year later, because of that story, the district has received a $106,969.26 refund.” – Business Journal Publisher George Economides
etcetera . . . City salaries: In one year, $100,000 Club membership up 25%, from 89 to 112. The battle for Long Beach land is being fought in the parks and on the open spaces these days. The problem has become one of definition: what belongs in a park? Is it a 911 emergency operations center? An adult-league play sports complex? An elementary school? A preschool? A high-rise building? A police station? A retail/entertainment center? All these uses have found their way into headlines and public forums as citizens begin to repeat the refrain, “Don’t take our park.”
There may not be an actual roller coaster planned for the unbuilt Queensway Bay project downtown, but trying to follow the paper trail of development agreements over the past four years certainly has its ups and downs. In the latest iteration of the delayed entertainment/retail project, the city council will decide tonight, February 13, whether to approve a contract amendment which gives developer DDR Urban LB (which used to be DDR OliverMcMillan and prior to that was just OliverMcMillan) 15 more months to build the project. DDR is Ohio-based Developers Diversified Realty.
Just over two months ago, Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan warned a congressional committee that the nation’s slumping economy would get worse before it would get better. Greenspan wrapped up his painstakingly detailed and jargon-filled testimony to the House Financial Services Committee with a remarkably blunt observation. “What is really quite remarkable,” he noted, “is that with this extraordinary litany of negative elements that have been going on day by day, month by month, the economy is still standing.” But in the days following the most devastating attack on American soil, economists, analysts and money managers for the most part agree – the terrorist attack that succeeded in bringing down both towers of the World Trade Center will probably knock the legs out from under the nation’s already weakening economy. Though generally considered more diverse and dynamic than most other areas of the nation, Southern California’s economic outlook has also suddenly turned gloomy.
Regarding the ongoing energy crisis, Long Beach businesses and residents are asking two questions: How long? How much? Long Beach Energy Director Chris Garner, when asked if utility bills will continue to be high for the next three or four years said, “Yes. Unless we get quick support from the state.” If the downtown Promenade were a debutante, seven developers vying to win the land there would be her suitors. The Long Beach Redevelopment Agency (RDA) has asked each of them “What, young man, is your intention?” On May 21, the RDA board sat watching as one by one, 13 developers came forward with a sevenminute presentation on what their plans are – and why they should be selected as The Promenade’s intended.
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• Alameda Corridor Opens April 15 Connecting Ports To Downtown L.A. Rail System • American Airlines May Pursue Legal Action To Get More Flights
• Battle Over Airport Flights Heats Up As Alaska Airlines Seeks To Offer Seattle Service
• Boeing Celebrates Delivery Of 100th 717 Airplane
• Boeing And U.S. Air Force Sign $9.7 Billion C-17 Contract, Extending Program To 2008
• City Council Discusses Controversial Subject Of Merging Redevelopment Areas
• City Council Places One-Year Citywide Moratorium On Self-Storage Facilities
• CityPlace Official Opening November 8
• Earth Tech, City And Port At Odds Over Disposal Of Navy Property
• Jerry Schubel Named President Of Aquarium Of The Pacific
• Long Beach Setting Up One Of The Nations’ First Wireless Internet Districts
• Long Beach Water Department Files For Patent For New Desalination Technology
• The Pike At Rainbow Harbor – Linchpin Of Queensway Bay Master Plan – Breaks Ground; Development Scheduled To Open September 2003
• The Lowenthals Of Long Beach – Alan, Bonnie And Suja –
Are Leaving Their Mark On The Political Landscape • West Coast Ports Shut Down Over Disagreement Between Union And Shipping
Companies’ Representatives – Stoppage Costing Over $900 Million A Day • West Long Beach Industrial Project Area Has Had Embattled 27-Year History
The Quotes [Warren] Iliff assumed his position when “[the Aquarium] was a damp hole in the ground. He has left a remarkable legacy in the aquarium and zoo community and to this city in particular. His down-to-earth leadership style and passion for the environment have been an inspiration to all.” – James C. Hankla, chair, Aquarium of the Pacific Board of Directors
“Jerry Schubel is the genuine, best possible person for this job. He brings both dimensions of aquarium management and understanding, and he also has a strong foothold in the academic community and in governmental relations. He’s very well-known in Washington, D.C.”
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– James C. Hankla, chair, Aquarium of the Pacific Board of Directors
“I am abysmally disappointed and upset that we would go through all this effort and all this documentation and all this study to end up with having the – Traci Wilson-Kleekamp, a Long Beach resident who led the opposition to the 911 center at Stearns Park, council on any Tuesday night able to vote to build on the parks.”
in testimony before the Long Beach Planning Commission
“Sticking with her consistent, focused, always positive leadership approach – the glass-is-half-full rather than half-empty – that has characterized her first eight years in office, Long Beach Mayor Beverly O’Neill swept past two opponents to easily win reelection on June 4. The effervescent mayor, who infects people with her smile, warmth and energy, stepped where no local elected official has previously: an unprecedented third term via the write-in route. No negative campaigning, no mudslinging, no hit piece mailers against her opponents, no whining through the media. Strictly the high road. ‘This is who I am, this is what I’ve done and, yes, there’s still work to do.’ That was her message to Long Beach voters, who responded by giving O’Neill another four years.” – Business Journal Publisher George Economides
etcetera . . . City salaries: Membership in the $100,000 Club jumps 42% – going from 112 employees in August 2001 to 159 this year. Highest paid is city manager at $199,578. So who’s in the lead to be the next mayor? Dan Baker supporters have told PoliticalWire that they don’t believe [incumbent Mayor Beverly] O’Neill has a chance as a write-in, and that since Baker has raised more money than others, he has the best shot at winning. With 45 days to go, the best guess is that, O’Neill is the one to beat, with Baker and [Ray] Grabinski neck and neck for second place.
Recent elections in Long Beach never seem to run smoothly or to focus on issues. Rather, they are fraught with accusations of illegal votes, or ugly hit pieces are mailed, or lawsuits are filed, or there are snafus at the polls. Little wonder voters stay home. And, stay home they did during the April 9 Long Beach primary, which featured elections for mayor, several city council seats, city prosecutor, school board/college trustee elections and four ballot measures. Despite a compelling slate of decisions to be made, voter turnout, according to the city clerk’s office, was 17.5% with only 16.6% voting in the most important race: for mayor of Long Beach.
Acting City Manager Gerald R. Miller appears to be the right person at the right time. He brings to the post a calm, mature, professional approach to handling the day-to-day activities of the city. He responds to questions directly, without resorting to cutesy, immature remarks, or worse: making excuses. That is a refreshing change. He sets the tone which flows down to department heads, senior managers and every city employee.
After an eight-year odyssey, and nine days before a potential deal-ending deadline, a groundbreaking ceremony was held by Developers Diversified Realty Corp. on May 14 for its Queensway Bay commercial waterfront complex. The project is to be built on 18 acres for which the developer is in the process of obtaining a lease from the city.
Responding to public and official input, Boeing Realty Corporation announced that it has changed its plans for the mixed-use PacificCenter@Long Beach project it is trying to develop adjacent to Long Beach Airport. Of particular note, the new plans call for a smaller residential component – from the original proposal of 3,800 multi-family units down to a mix of 2,500 single- and multi-family units.
The Long Beach Water Department announced May 3 the filing of a patent application for a break-through technology that changes seawater into freshwater at a significantly reduced cost. The department began building a small pilot plant last summer to test stages of the process, which was invented by the department’s deputy general manager of operations, Diem X. Vuong.
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The Headlines • After Five Months As Interim Chief, Jerry Miller Takes Helm As Long Beach City Manager • California Workers’ Comp Rates Highest In The United States
• Carnival Cruise Lines To Set Sail From Long Beach April 14 • City Council Adopts Three-Year Financial Strategic Plan • City’s Cut In Art Funding Felt Widely Throughout Arts Community • Convention & Visitors Bureau Reports That Confirmed Bookings Up 25% • Developer Planning Two High-Rise Condo Towers On Ocean Boulevard • Fuel Cell Technology Gaining Traction In California • Long Beach-based Molina Healthcare, Inc. Goes Public • Long Beach City Union Leaders Protest Budget-Cutting Recommendations • Long Beach Enterprise Zone Promotes Fertile Business Environment • Long Beach Wireless Internet District Debuts; Similar Projects To Follow Soon At Airport, Convention Center • Natural Gas Lawsuit Settled; City To Receive $17 Million From El Paso Corp. • Over 10-Year Period, Long Beach Tops In Percent Increase In Retail Store Sales Compared To 20 Most Populated Cities In California • Tempers Flare As Mayor, Councilmembers, Citizens Battle Over Change In Ordinance For Redevelopment Agency Appointments • What Will Future Hospitals Be Like? – Cutting-Edge Technology And Old-Fashioned Humane Care Will Figure Greatly
The Quotes “Cities should not stand still, they either move forward or fall behind – and our community is anything but static . . . We have a right to be proud but we cannot be complacent.” – Long Beach Mayor Beverly O’Neill at her annual State of the City Address
o “If there’s any one thing an entrepreneur has to be willing to do, it’s to make decisions and not be afraid to be wrong.”
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– Jim Gray, Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce Entrepreneur of the Year
“Toyota has been very significant in terms of our success. They have been with us from the beginning. Their sponsorship represents the longest continuing auto sponsorship of an auto racing event in the United States.” – Jim Michaelian, president/CEO, Grand Prix Association of Long Beach on the 29th Year of Toyota Grand Prix “Creating synergy between all areas of downtown is really of the utmost importance to us. In that direction, we are in the process of creating two plans. One is a marketing action plan that looks at downtown as a destination and creates an umbrella marketing plan for all parts of our downtown. . . . We’re also engaging in a retail recruitment strategy plan with the city. Both of those studies and plans will work simultaneously.” – Kraig Kojian, president and CEO of the Downtown Long Beach Associates
“They call doubling or tripling the size of the terminal an ‘enhancement.’ When you see this kind of thing, and they say, ‘No, no, no, don’t worry, we’re not going to expand it,’ it puts fear in us.” – Local realtor Joe Sopo of Long Beach Homes Under Stress and Hazard 2, voicing concerns about improving the airport terminal and related areas
etcetera . . . The Pacific Merchant Shipping Association (PMSA) and the Steamship Association of Southern California announced earlier this month that they are merging their operations to better represent the maritime industry in California by speaking with a strong, single voice on issues critical to the industry. With reports that trade through California could triple in less than 20 years, PMSA will face the challenge of organizing one of the state’s most important and fastest-growing industries.
City of Long Beach officials released a three-year financial strategic plan January 8 with which they hope to resolve a budget deficit that could potentially balloon to $90 million by Fiscal Year (FY) 2006. The plan, which calls for the elimination of 487 city jobs, including 25 percent of management positions over the next three years, is not final at this stage and would require city council approval. Furthermore, some of the plan depends on negotiations with the general city workers’ union. Local economy A-OK – from Carnival Cruise Lines terminal to housing and retail construction to bustling airport and growing harbor activity, Long Beach poised to weather state and regional economic storms.
Several Pine Avenue business owners argue that the City of Long Beach has backed down on its promise to promote the district as an attractive shopping and dining area. Even as many of the downtown street’s stores and restaurants are closing their doors, the business owners contend the city is still neglecting the area and shifting its attention to the launch of the entertainment and retail development The Pike at Rainbow Harbor. In one of the most confusing, ugly and divisive city council meetings in years, Mayor Beverly O’Neill and eight of the nine councilmembers (Bonnie Lowenthal was not present) locked horns for some two hours on July 1 over a change in the city ordinance detailing how members of the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency (RDA) Project Area Committees are appointed to the RDA board. In the end, the mayor got her way on a 5-3 vote.
Hoping to free the city from future litigation involving Long Beach Airport, the city council voted earlier this month to execute a negotiated agreement in which JetBlue Airways would give up a total of five flight slots to two other airlines. The agreement would resolve a dispute that arose in 2001 when the city council awarded JetBlue 27 empty slots at the then-under-performing airport. The Long Beach Redevelopment Agency (RDA) on February 25 released its longawaited study of redevelopment in Long Beach, including a list of 14 alternatives to the city’s current redevelopment structure. Included among the 14 alternatives is the controversial idea of merging the city’s seven redevelopment project areas.
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• Airport Advisory Commission Begins Terminal Improvement Study Sessions • Business Leaders Cite Gradual Improvement Of Laws Impacting Employers • Business Owners Opposed To Planned Homeless Shelter On Oregon Avenue • City Budget Shortfall For FY 2005 Is 50 Percent Higher Than Expected • City Manager Recommends Replacing RDA Board With City Councilmembers
Health Care Mid-Year Report Feature Stories Focus On Miller Children’s Hospital, Community Hospital Of Long Beach And St. Mary Medical Center 16-Page Insert
• Divisive Working Environment Bedevils CSULB’s College Of Business Administration;
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Controversies Raise Questions About Dean Calingo’s Leadership Abilities
■ By GIL COHEN Staff Writer
• Federal, Local Officials Say Security At Port Of Long Beach Evolving
he area generally known as Central Long Beach contains some of Long Beach’s grittiest neighborhoods, but is on the road to improvement, according to city officials and a resident involved with redevelopment. Challenges do remain on several fronts, they conceded. The Central Long Beach Redevelopment Project Area makes up some of Central Long
• Is Long Beach Doing More Than Its Fair Share In Providing For The Homeless? • LNG Terminal: Pollution Remedy Or Safety Hazard? • Local Group Proposes ‘Cambodia Town’ Designation For Stretch Of Anaheim Street
FedEx Breaks Ground On Huge Facility In Carson • Pg 4
A Discussion With Women’s Leadership Exchange Co-Founder Coast Cadillac Has Remodeled Its Facilities • Pg 7 MAYOR BEVERLY O’NEILL
Long Beach Mayor & City Council
MAYOR’S STAFF Cathy Wieder Diane Jacobus Mike Sanders Sandy Fox Shana Ortiz Francisco Rodriguez Erma Varnado Roxana Valencia 562/570-6801
A citywide election for the full-time mayor of Long Beach is held every four years, with the next election in 2006. Nine part-time city councilmembers are elected to four-year terms by district. Elections will be held in 2006 for the odd-numbered districts. Even-numbered district elections are in 2008. The map of Long Beach shows the approximate boundaries of each council district, the council representative, their current staff and phone number. Some staff members may be part-time. Each council district represents about 53,000 people. City Hall is located at 333 W. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90802. The City Hall information telephone number is 562/570-6555.
Ship History And Future Developments
9th District VAL LERCH
8th District RAY GABELICH
5th District JACKIE KELL
COUNCIL STAFF Leana Marshall Janet Surber Jonny Turcios Dan Pressburg 562/570-6137
COUNCIL STAFF Jonathan Kraus Sallie Rodman Other staff members to be determined
7th District TONIA REYES-URANGA
• Respective Groups Outline Their Positions On Boeing Realty’s PacifiCenter Project
COUNCIL STAFF Tim Patton Yolanda Henley Betty Algie 562/570-6932
COUNCIL STAFF Ray Pok Alejandra Garcia Linda Delgado 562/570-6139 1st District BONNIE LOWENTHAL 4th District PATRICK O’DONNELL
COUNCIL STAFF Nikki Tennant Somaly Rawles Bianca Roman Vincent Puth 562/570-6919
COUNCIL STAFF Melissa Infusino Other staff members to be determined
6th District LAURA RICHARDSON
2nd District DAN BAKER
3rd District FRANK COLONNA
COUNCIL STAFF Charles Brown Daysha McArthur Fernando Barba Sereivuth Prak 562/570-6816
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Women Entrepreneurs In The 21st Century
• Long Beach Hosts Final Swimming Venue Before 2004 Athens Olympics • Queen’s Seaport Development CEO Addresses Rent Credit Controversy,
July 20-August 2, 2004
COUNCIL STAFF Mark Taylor Robert LaffoonVillegas Rick McCabe Lauren Templin 562/570-6684
COUNCIL STAFF Jeannine Critie Avonne Gravel Lisa Berglund Julie Maleki 562/570-6310
Normal business hours for City Hall are 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. The City Hall parking garage is off Broadway (a one-way street going east). For City Hall information, call 562/570-6555. City council meetings are Tuesday evenings, usually beginning at 5 p.m. in city council chambers on the first floor of City Hall. There is no meeting the last Tuesday of each month. Offices for the mayor and city council are on the 14th floor.
Mayor/City Councilmembers & District Map • See Page 16
eslie Grossman was the head L of a marketing communications firm generating $2 million in revenue per year. While many in her position would have been satisfied with that degree of success, Grossman had her sights set on the next level – a multimillion-dollar company or, perhaps, even a Fortune 400 company. But something was holding her back. Try as she might, she was unable to take her firm to the next plateau. Then she began researching and learned that she was not alone. Many other women entrepreneurs were experiencing the same phenomena. That realization prompted Grossman to co-found Women’s Leadership Exchange along with Andrea March.
Long Beach Business Journal 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 562/988-1222
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Commissioners Ask Airport Staff For Smaller-Scale Alternatives To Project ■ By Teresa Talerico Contributing Writer s it a matter of stalling or cautious consideration? When it comes to discussions about a divisive Long Beach Airport improvements project, that’s a subject of debate between two groups – those in favor of the project and those opposed to it. Last week, the Long Beach Airport Advisory Commission delayed voting on airport staff’s recommendations for proposed terminal upgrades, which could more than double the airport’s size. Instead, commissioners asked
airport staff to prepare two smaller alternatives to the proposal that’s already on the table. Developing those alternatives will take another 60 days in a process that has stretched into almost eight months. At least one proponent of improvements, a member of the airport’s business community, suggested that’s just a strategy opponents of the proposed terminal upgrades are using to delay muchneeded improvements for the cramped airport. “It’s a stalling tactic,” said Kevin McAchren, a member of the Long Beach Airport Association and president of AirServ, an aircraft
ground support business. “The real aim of the HUSH2 organization is to frustrate JetBlue (Airways) and to get them to look elsewhere and to not fly into Long Beach anymore. I think their real aim is to close this airport.” He referred to airport watchdog group LBHUSH2, which stands for Long Beach Homes Under Stress and Hazard. The organization has been a leading voice against “super-sizing” the airport and adding more flights, especially after JetBlue arrived in Long Beach in 2001 and increased business at the small airport. Please Continue To Page 12
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■ By TYLER REEB Editor he numbers are in for the 2004 Aquatic Festival and they T have surpassed projections both competitively and financially, Steve Goodling, president and CEO of the Long Beach Area Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, told the Business Journal last Friday. The event generated more than $65 million in publicity in both print and electronic media,” Goodling said, noting that the NBC television coverage of the U.S. Olympic swim trials, which will be worth “millions more,” was not yet factored in to that figure. From a competitive standpoint, the swim trials were a banner year, said Beth White, chief operating officer of the 2004 Aquatic Festival. In total, six world records were broken along with nine American records, she said. “We had more world records than they’ve had in the last four trials combined.” The aggregate attendance for the entire event totaled 100,000, Goodling said, which generated a $15-million to $20million economic impact for the city. As city planners look to develop the land next to the Long Beach Arena in the months ahead, “I think that we do need to consider some type of aquatic facility,” Goodling said. “If other corporate sponsors and U.S.A Swimming, with it’s corporate sponsors, would support that [idea] we should consider . . . being a Mecca for swimming, water polo and other aquatic activities.”
Seven-time Gold Medalist Mark Spitz, top left, congratulates swimmer Michael Phelps on another win.
(Business Journal photographs by Thomas McConville, www.proimaginggroup.com)
“You’ve probably heard this before, but my husband and I went to the opening of P.F. Chang’s. It was the first restaurant down there [at The Pike]. And the experience – not just the food but the experience – of being there was overwhelming to me because it was the first indication [that The Pike project was succeeding] . . . and I still feel that. I feel that most of the things that have been planned during my time are coming to fruition. – Long Beach Mayor Beverly O’Neill during a Business Journal interview commemorating her decade of serving the city as its mayor However, there is a great deal more to do.” INDEX
■ Real Estate & Development. Pgs 2-7 ■ Leases & Transactions. Pg 7
■ Women’s Leadership Exchange. Pgs 8-10 ■ Long Beach Airport. Pg. 11 ■ In The News. Pgs 15-17
■ Meetings & Events. Pgs 19-21 ■ New Businesses. Pgs 22-23 ■ Biz Quiz. Pgs 24 & 25 ■ Perspective. Pgs 26 & 27
“I think the community has been incredibly patient. Now it is a matter of things coming to fruition. I think within the next 24 months we’ll see a lot more grand openings rather than groundbreakings.” – Barbara Kaiser, Long Beach Redevelopment Agency, responding to North Long Beach residents critical of the slow pace of redevelopment “I like Gary Burroughs very much. I just . . . don’t know how he could possibly have come to his conclusion . . . Apparently, he felt under pressure for whatever reasons. When I wrote to the city council, I said we totally disagree with Gary Burroughs that we owe $2 million in rent . . . We don’t.” – Joseph F. Prevratil, president and CEO of Queen’s Seaport Development, Inc., on Burroughs’ audit of the company’s rent credits
“I think that we do need to consider some type of aquatic facility. If other corporate sponsors and U.S.A Swimming, with its corporate sponsors, would support that [idea] we should consider . . . being a Mecca for swimming, water polo and other aquatic activities.” – Steve Goodling, president and CEO of the Long Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, on ideas for developing the land next to the Long Beach Arena after the success of the 2004 Aquatic Festival
“The people sitting at Bubba Gump Shrimp will be burned to a third degree in 13 seconds. The fire would spread to the Aquarium, City Hall, this hotel, parks, schoolyards and businesses.” – Bruce Monroe, Sierra Club spokesman, on the potential fire, explosion and terrorist hazards of the proposed 27-acre liquefied natural gas terminal at Pier T at the Port of Long Beach
“We have very stringent codes that we have to design to. Those codes require that the facility be designed so that should we have an incident, the effects of that incident would remain on our property.” – Tom Giles, executive vice president of Sound Energy Solutions, on the potential fire, explosion and terrorist hazards of the proposed 27-acre liquefied natural gas terminal at Pier T at the Port of Long Beach
etcetera . . . Sadly, another filing deadline has passed for those wishing to run for Long Beach City Council seats, and no one at City Hall has taken the LBBJ up on the idea floated nearly a decade ago: make anyone running for elected office take an IQ test. The bar for passing the test would not be high, but just enough to give voters an idea of what’s between a candidate’s ears. Usually, an IQ of around 100 means that half the people test higher and half lower. But let’s be easy. Candidates need to score just 90, meaning that only 25 percent of the people are not as smart as them.
Authorizing redevelopment staff to execute a disposition and development agreement, the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency and the Long Beach City Council last week (March) gave the nod to convey land to the first of four developers selected to gentrify the downtown’s West Gateway neighborhood.
In news that will come as a relief to businesses and residences located adjacent to the I-710 Freeway, the draft plan for the freeway’s proposed expansion – scheduled for public release this Thursday at City Hall – does not contemplate taking eminent domain upon any homes or businesses. The new preliminary plan marks a significant departure from plans released last year, which proposed expansion scenarios that stood to displace hundreds of homeowners and businesses.
After years of community opposition to its local plans, Boeing Realty announced that it is downgrading the number of homes planned for its PacifiCenter@Boeing project on disused Boeing land from 2,500 to 1,400. The company has also changed the name of the 261-acre project to Douglas Park, after the Douglas Aircraft Co., which more than 60 years ago established what is now Boeing’s C17 and 717 manufacturing plant.
Ethics handbook for Long Beach city officials, employees and commission members prepared. Serves as guide to regulations governing ethics, conflicts of interests, financial disclosure, accepting gifts, political activities and more.
December 2004 was a hectic month as numerous local issues consumed residents and elected officials. There were the hearings on airport improvements, hearings on Boeing’s Douglas Park project and hearings on whether city councilmembers should serve as the redevelopment agency. Other issues included the continuing debate over an LNG facility at the port and the 56-acre Long Beach Sports Park project.
The single-family residential submarket continues to prosper seemingly unabated. Prices in Long Beach have been rising an average of 1 percent a month for at least a year, with the average house being priced now at about $350,000, according to Bob Stallings, owner of Long Beach-based RE/MAX Real Estate Specialists.
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4 Long Beach Firefighters have a 115-year history of serving the residents of Long Beach. Long Beach Firefighters: -Represents nearly 400 firefighters -Protects the 7th largest city in California with almost 500,000 residents -Responds to emergencies covering 52.3 square miles, 7 miles of beaches and covering 22 square miles of waterways -Safeguards one of the worldâ€™s busiest seaports and a growing airport -Protects the nearly five million visitors to Long Beach annually. -Responds to over 60,000 calls for service a year
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THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING YOUR LONG BEACH FIREFIGHTERS!!!
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• Boeing Systems-Integration Strategies Redefining Structure Of 21st Century U.S. Military • City Council To Consider Reduced Sizing For Airport Terminal Environmental Impact Report • Developers Diversified Realty Sells CityPlace Center To Shooshani Developers LLC • Down To Business With Sound Energy Solutions: A Business Journal Q&A On Proposed LNG Facility
November 8-21, 2005
CITY HALL ROUNDUP
• It’s Official: Bob Foster Throws His Hat Into The Ring To Be City’s Next Mayor Feature Stories In Real Estate Quarterly: Adler Investments And Caruana & Associates. Also, Detailed Development List And A Who’s Who In Real Estate • See 28-Pg Insert
• Long Beach Memorial Implants World’s First Device To Manage The Heart’s Fluid Accumulation • Long Beach Officials Hope Local Say Over LNG Facility Doesn’t Go Up In Flames • Mid-Year Economic Forecast: A Touch Of Inflation, A Sprinkle Of
Opposition To Labor Peace Agreement Gears Up For City Council Meeting Showdown ■ By JENNIFER WANG Staff Writer ronically, the issue of “labor peace” for hotels on cityowned land is shaping up to be quite a fight for union representatives and a growing coalition of Long Beach-based businesses that oppose the proposed labor agreement. Those familiar with the
issue expect a heated debate at the Long Beach City Council’s November 15 meeting. Area hotels, restaurants, retailers and ancillary industries that support the hotels, have formed an opposition effort called the Long Beach Hospitality Alliance. At press time, the roster, which is expected to grow, included: the Hyatt Regency Long Beach, Marriott Long Beach, The Westin Long Beach, Hilton Long Beach, Ensemble Hotel Partners, Queen
A New Plan For The Queen Mary • Pg 2
resident George W. Bush P may have struck out in his attempt to put White House
Bankruptcy Judge Bars Hostile Takeover Attempts for 90 Days • Opposition To Labor Peace Agreement Gears Up For City Council Meeting Showdown
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F project on The Promenade claimed its former facility, Bikestation
■ By CHAD GREENE Staff Writer
• No Pirates At Queen Mary’s Rail Yet:
which are non-union, and the Coast Long Beach Hotel and the Queen Mary, which are unionized. The Long Beach Hospitality Alliance took nearly four weeks crafting its response to the council’s October 4 ruling, which directed the city attorney to draft an ordinance requiring hotels with leases on city property to provide a no-strike document as a condition of any new lease or lease amendment.
Dollars & Sense: Local Economists RDA UPDATE Weigh In On Bush’s Bikestation Long Beach Pedals Into New Facility 40 double-tier bicycle racks and offers cyclists C G Choice To Replace ■StaffByWriter amenities such as rentals and repairs, changing rooms and restrooms and access to vehicle-sharing Greenspan orced to shift gears because a redevelopment services. Its location on the 1st Street Transit Mall HAD
Interest Rate Hikes And A Downpour Of Expensive Raw Goods
Mary, Travelodge Convention Center, EventPeople, 555 East Restaurant, King’s Fish House, Smooth’s Sports Grille, L’Opera Ristorante, The Madison, Alegria Cocina Latina, George’s Greek Cafe, Parkers’ Lighthouse, La Palapa, Daily Grill, The Reef Restaurant, Buster’s Beach House, Buono’s Pizzeria, Sevilla and CityPlace. Hotels affected by the proposed labor peace agreement are the Hyatt Regency and Marriott Hotel,
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Long Beach on November 4 held the grand opening of its new location in the Long Beach Transit Center at 221 E. 1st St. Making adaptive reuse of two underutilized observation decks and incorporating recycled parts from its original location, the new Bikestation Long Beach features
Counsel Harriet E. Miers on the U.S. Supreme Court, but his choice of Ben S. Bernanke to succeed Alan Greenspan as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors seems bound to New General Manager improve his batting average on At The Renaissance Hotel high-profile nominations. • See In The News, Pg 15 The consensus so far is that Bernanke, an avid baseball fan Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville who currently serves as chairman of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers, should win Public Hearings On Proposed LNG Terminal To Continue Though congressional confirmation to the post that Greenspan has held for December 1; Written Comments On Related EIR/EIS Due By December 8 18 years. Mitsubishi Corp. subsidiary Sound Energy ■ By T YLER REEB Joseph Maggadino, chairman Solutions (SES) seeks to build a facility at the of the department of economics Editor southeast end of Terminal Island on Pier T to at California State University, aving released their joint draft environmen- import LNG, which is natural gas that has been Long Beach, praised his fellow tal impact report (EIR) and environmental cooled to minus 259 degrees Fahrenheit into a liqLong Beach Councilmember academic – Bernanke chaired the impact statement (EIS) for a proposed Liquefied uid form hundreds of times more condensed than Reviews. Grrrr . . . • Pgs 4 & 5 Please Continue To Page 7 Natural Gas (LNG) terminal at the Port of Long its gaseous form. If built, the facility would Beach, the Long Beach Harbor Commission and receive LNG imports delivered by tanker ships. Long Beach Business Journal PRSRT STD 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission The terminal itself would include two massive U.S. POSTAGE Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 (FERC) are now gathering public input on the con- storage tanks, re-gasification facilities, pipelines PAID 562/988-1222 troversial project proposal that remains a hot-but- and delivery and unloading equipment. Long Beach, CA PERMIT NO. 254 ton topic in local, state and national circles. Please Continue To Page 18 CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED
Gathering The Facts On LNG
• Pine Avenue Stakeholders Clash With City Staff Over Dining And Entertainment District Conditions
• Port Of Long Beach Seeks To Balance Growth With Environmentally Sound Policies • Winning Approval For Art Exchange May Not Be As Easy As Painting-By-Numbers
INDEX ■ ■ ■ ■
Newswatch. Pgs 2-10 PoliticalWire. Pg 8 Automobile Industry Pg 11 In The News. Pg 15
■ Real Estate & Development. Pgs 16-17 ■ Leases/Transactions. Pg 16 ■ And So It Goes . . . With John Craig. Pg 20
■ Biz Quiz. Pg 21 ■ Perspective. Pgs 22-23 – Realty Views by Terry Ross – Ask The Sales Trainer By Lee Godden
The Quotes “The C-17s have been a hero in the war on terrorism and also in humanitarian efforts like tsunami relief. It’s not just the Air Force who uses them.” – Boeing’s Ron Marcotte, vice president, Air Force Airlift and Tanker Programs
“We’re not proselytizing for a particular agency or charity. People can use us to benefit whatever is already their favorite charity or organization. We offer a great opportunity for people to be philanthropic but go through the planning, oversight and stewardship necessary to fulfill their charitable intentions.” – Jim Worsham, executive director of the Greater Long Beach Foundation
“We’re not driving port growth. There are 18 million people in Southern California who are asking for goods. We must provide facilities for the expeditious movement of cargo while not creating further impacts to the environment. [The port’s Green Port Policy, adopted in January 2005] becomes our ethic, our commitment to green the port while providing what we do under the tidelands trust . . . we’re looking at everything we’re doing in terms of our policy, asking ourselves, ‘can it be done in an environmentally sustainable way?’ and ‘can we use recycled materials or an alternative energy source?’ All our – Richard Steinke, executive director for the Port of Long Beach staff is beginning to think this way.” “Residents will not vote to increase their taxes until this city council takes every step to reduce expenses. That means addressing the city’s pension costs to taxpayers. And if city employees threaten to leave, then let them leave because, eventually, all cities will have to take action on the pension – Business Journal Publisher George Economides after city council discusses possible ballot measure issue or face bankruptcy.” “Eminent domain is a laser that can be effective in attacking cancer. It is not a sledgehammer that should be swung at flies. Those of us in local government responsible for promoting economic development can breathe a sigh of relief that this power was not squelched by the Supreme Court. But we should take a big deep breath before contemplating taking advantage of that power in any but the most obvious cases.” – Rick Cole, city manager of Ventura and former mayor of Pasadena “Throughout the past many months, we have worked hard to resolve amicably with the City of Long Beach our many lease-related disputes. Procedurally, we have acceded to the city’s scheduling limitations. Substantively, we have even expressed a willingness to let the city walk away from some of its written commitments to us. Unfortunately, the city has remained intractable and turned our negotiations into a disappointing charade.” – Joseph Prevratil, president and CEO of Queen’s Seaport Development, Inc. on the company filing for bankruptcy after nearly two years of failed negotiations regarding the rent-credit dispute with the city
etcetera . . . It’s no secret that the Business Journal Watchdog loves sticking its head out car windows and panting in the wind while driving through Long Beach area streets. But when it comes to riding up and down the 1-710 Freeway, this canine reporter keeps the windows rolled up and both paws on the wheel. The increasingly dangerous driving conditions and poor air quality associated with the freeway are largely due to the surge of international trade-related truck traffic moving through the Long Beach-Los Angeles port complex in recent years.
Despite the announcement late last week that The Boeing Company is halting production of its 717 commercial aircraft, eliminating hundreds of high-paying local jobs, the economic outlook for the Greater Long Beach area is bright for most business sectors, according to local economists and industry professionals. The economy will perform better than Los Angeles County as a whole, Joe Magaddino, California State University, Long Beach economist, said, “primarily because we’ve got a lot of economic development opportunities.”
Downtown Long Beach is thriving once again with the office market occupancy rate at approximately 85 percent and an estimated 4,000 to 5,000 residential units built, in process or in the planning stages. Bearing in mind the city’s positive growth downtown and its early heyday, it’s hard to believe Downtown Long Beach experienced such demoralizing doldrums in between those aforementioned periods of urban affluence.
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• An Exercise In Institutional Memory: Recounting Mayor O’Neill’s Most Formidable Challenges • Citizen Charter Reform Petition Goes To City Clerk In April
• City Council Certifies Airport EIR, Orders Up Plans For 97,545-Square-Foot Terminal
• Congress Extends Boeing’s C-17 Program; Orders 10 Additional Airlifters
• Controversy Surrounds Home Depot Design Center Project
March 14-27, 2006
Three Who Would Be Mayor
• Debate Over Labor Peace Agreement Returning To City Council Chambers January 17
Frank Colonna, Doug Drummond And Bob Foster Square Off April 11 For City’s Top Post The Healthcare Spring Report Includes Three Feature Stories • See 16-Page Insert
• Designer Digs: Long Beach’s Architecturally Significant Homes
■ By TYLER REEB Editor nlike virtually every other U.S. city of its size, Long Beach lacks a major netU work television news channel capable of pre-
senting a mayoral debate to the International City’s nearly half a million residents. That media reality prompts candidates to target voters via community forums, local cable access programming, Internet campaigns, direct mail and, of course, good old-fashioned print media.
• F. King Alexander Assumes Presidency Of CSULB In January • Foster Wins Battle To Succeed O’Neill As Mayor Of Long Beach • Gas Settlement Creates Heat Between Signal Hill And Long Beach • More Turbulence Over Airport Terminal Improvements: School District Sues City
The disparate nature of political campaigning in Long Beach was, perhaps, not as evident over the last three election cycles due to outgoing Mayor Beverly O’Neill’s immense popularity, but now voters must choose a new leader for the city’s highest office. They have three viable choices: 3rd District City Councilmember Frank Colonna; former 3rd District City Councilmember Doug Drummond, a retired police commander; and former Southern California Edison President Bob Foster.
The Long Beach Health And Human Services Department Is Celebrating 100 Years! • See Pg 9, Healthcare Insert
Frank Colonna Interview Begins On Pg 21
Doug Drummond Interview Begins On Pg 24
PERSPECTIVE & ANALYSIS
Just Air Escaping The Balloon
• The Thinning Blue Line – Long Beach Losing Too Many Seasoned Police Officers To Other Jurisdictions LNG Clues From Philadelphia Grrrr . . . • Pg 5
• Underserved 6th District Community To Benefit From
New Jobs And Business Strategy Reveals Economic Vision For Long Beach ■ By JENNIFER WANG Staff Writer
■ By GEORGE ECONOMIDES Publisher
fter a lengthy series of interviews with incumbents seeking to retain their elected offices and challengers hoping to unseat them, the Long Beach Business Journal, on March 6, issued its endorsements – save one – for the April 11 city elections. This has been a very long, timeconsuming process, but Business Journal staff felt it was necessary in
Long Beach Business Journal 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 562/988-1222
CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED
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PAID Long Beach, CA PERMIT NO. 254
Proposed Ray And Joan Kroc Corps Community Center
hen the Long Beach City Council adopted the jobs and business strategy (JBS) in December 2005, the city established an economic plan that is far more comprehensive than the “three-Ts” – trade, technology and tourism – approach of the 1990s. “I kind of will miss trade, technology and tourism,” Mayor Beverly O’Neill said during the JBS launch event March 2. “But you know, times change, our city has changed a great deal. . . . We did accomplish the goals that we set for ourselves in the ’90s, but now we are heading in a new direction.” The report on the new five-year plan comprises three volumes, detailing four major goals, 13 key strategies and 22 additional strategies that the city should strive for to achieve a “vital and prosperous economy.” In sum, the chief goals are: • To achieve and sustain a growing prosperous economy;
INDEX ■ Newswatch. Pgs 2-13 ■ Real Estate & Development. Pgs 14-16 ■ Dollars & Sense. Pgs 17-19
• What Went Wrong At The Pike? Panelists Discuss
Bob Foster Interview Begins On Pg 27
CITY HALL ROUNDUP
Business Journal Endorsements Long Beach-Based SNUGTOP Has Seen A Dramatic Drop In Workers’ Comp Claims, But Here Comes WEA . . . See Dollars & Sense • Pg 17
• Residential Real Estate Outlook 2006: No Bursting Bubble,
• Retail Store Sales Rise, But Per Capita Spending Remains Low
Over the last two weeks, the Business Journal editorial staff – Editor Tyler Reeb and Staff Writers Chad Greene and Jennifer Wang – along with Publisher George Economides, conducted in-depth interviews with each of the candidates. All three question-and-answer features in this issue are intended to serve as clearinghouses on stances and views the candidates have taken on major issues that voters are likely considering as they prepare to cast their ballots for the April 11 primary election. ■
• Establish fiscal health and promote revenue growth to fund city services; • Promote the quality of life for residents, workers, employers and visitors; and • Create economic opportunity. Joel Fierberg, economic development commission chair and CEO of SNUGTOP, called it “a plan that’s really going to make a LNG Issue On difference for the city.” It is not, as he assured many com- Tonight’s (March 14) munity members during the City Council Agenda
14-month outreach and preparation process, “one more city survey report that’s going to go on the shelf.” As a vision, or blueprint, of the city’s long-term economic development, JBS takes into account several difficulties facing an aging urban city, including deteriorating public infrastructure, blighted commercial corridors and high poverty rates – compounded by a small job base and even smaller tax base.
■ In The News. Pg 20 ■ Mayoral Interviews. Pgs 21-29 ■ PoliticalWire. Pg 30 ■ And So It Goes . . . With John Craig. Pg 32
See Story Pg. 8
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■ Biz Quiz. Pg 33 ■ Perspective. Pgs 34-35 – Realty Views by Terry Ross – Ask The Sales Trainer By Lee Godden
Potential Solutions For Underperforming Retail Center
The Quotes “Tonight, the voters of this great city embraced an honest, unifying vision. Together, we will make our wonderful, diverse city a model for the nation.” – Bob Foster on election night, June 6, after winning the runoff for mayor of Long Beach
“I tell people that universities are economic assets in ways they perhaps have never imagined. Just keeping our students here, the ones we’ve already invested in kindergarten through high school, that’s a significant gain for the region and for the community. But even more important is pulling in some of the best and the brightest in addition to the ones that you already have.” – F. King Alexander, first-year president of California State University, Long Beach “I do need to make money and, like most of my colleagues, have outside employment. Mine happens to be doing real estate investments. There are a number of people in the city who are my friends and they have been very close friends and colleagues and allies a long time who I have done business with. There is absolutely nothing improper about that, as just about every legal mind who has spoken on the matter has said, and clearly said to me before we went into business together.” – Dan Baker, 2nd District Councilmember, who resigned amid scrutiny over his vote to increase the salary for the Long Beach Police Officer’s Association without disclosing his recent out-of-state real estate investment with the union’s president
“The Pike is an example of good intentions gone bad. There are nice things . . . but the streets are treated like blank walls. . . . Shoreline [Drive] should be an urban boulevard – not an extension of the freeway.” – Alan Pullman, associate and director of design for Perkowitz + Ruth “That is certainly one of the things that supports what we’re doing. The commercial [market] has really come on quite strong in the last two years and we think . . . increased demand and higher pricing on commercial land allows more opportunity from that standpoint. We think that just happens to dovetail nicely with the plan that we’re taking with pulling the single-family residential out.” – Stephen Barker, Boeing Realty Corporation president, on the decision to eliminate the single-family home element within Douglas Park
etcetera . . . Community leaders and elected officials gathered earlier this month to celebrate the City of Long Beach’s selection as one of six cities in the western United States to receive a $70-$80 million endowment to construct a Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center that will be managed by The Salvation Army.
The City of Long Beach may be nearing the end of a costly, four-year financial balancing act, judging from the proposed fiscal year 2007 budget released on August 14. Mayor Bob Foster, City Manager Jerry Miller and other officials unveiled a $2.2 billion budget that would eliminate the remaining $10 million of a general fund structural deficit that once ran as high as $103 million – with $9 million to spare.
Currently, the swampy-looking lot contains six above-ground storage tanks and a tangle of pipelines. Home Depot wants to replace that with a new design center, but nearby homeowners argue that the cure may be worse than the problem. City officials currently are circulating a draft environmental impact report for the plan by Home Depot to create what it calls a Design Center on Studebaker Road at Loynes Drive. In the enduring words of lovers, as I have said before: “It’s morning again, Long Beach, and I still love you.” Those emotional words, with which Mayor Beverly O’Neill concluded her final State of the City Address on January 10, are perhaps more often uttered by passionate people with sleep in their eyes. But it was tears that glistened in the three-term mayor’s eyes as she ascended the podium inside the Grand Ballroom of the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center to the sound of a standing ovation, the audience of 1,500 applauding O’Neill’s accomplishments during her nearly 12 years in office.
$100,000 Club membership jumps by 56 percent. Fiscal Year 2007 city budget shows 259 employee positions have sixfigure salaries; a year ago it was 166. These days, the Queen Mary is searching for a new captain, so to speak. According to Howard Ehrenberg, Queen’s Seaport Development, Inc.’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy trustee, the 66-year lease for the city-owned ship will be sold to a qualified (and deep-pocketed) investor who is willing to spend at least $48 million to buy out the operator’s calculated debt.
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LBBJHistoryPages_Layout 1 3/10/12 10:52 AM Page 35
The Headlines • Aquarium Breaks Ground On New Exhibit/Classroom – City’s First LEED Platinum-Certified Building • City Council Considering Police And Fire Impact Fees On New Developments
• City Council Budget Committee Takes Action On Hot-Button Salary Issues • Five Years Later, JetBlue Still Waiting For Airport Terminal Improvements • Long Beach Studies Ordinance Requiring Developers August 28-September 10, 2007
California State University, Long Beach City Salary Increases Gives Boost To Local Economy Remain Hot Topic; Who Approved Them?
To Build Affordable Housing Or Pay Fee • May 1 Election: Voters Give Mayor More Power,
■ By ALEXIA TERZOPOULOS Staff Writer
he success of T an educational institution is often
But Reject Salary Commission And Expanded Term Limits • Port Security: A Work In Progress – Congressional Members Gather In Long Beach To Discuss Security Challenges • Recent Events Cause Councilmembers To Consider Fire Sprinkler Requirements
F. King Alexander, president, California State University, Long Beach (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
measured by admission selectivity and federally defined graduation rates, but public university administrators nationwide are trying to shift this perception, encouraging an approach that incorporates the school’s community contributions into evaluations. F. King Alexander, president of California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), is one of those administrators. He has been
working with officials from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities to alter the traditional assessments. Alexander describes CSULB as an excellent example of the impact a university can have on
its surrounding community. “Universities such as ours are the foundation of the economy. We have become the foundation of our economy,” he says. “We’re a pretty powerful economic engine. The kind of university that builds cities and regions with our numbers of graduates.” And those num-
bers are high. This year alone, CSULB graduated about 8,100 students – more than Princeton University’s total enrollment, Alexander notes. Please Continue To Page 6
Restoring Classic Cars: ‘A Functional Art Form’
• Long Beach Postpones Plan To Increase Patio Dining Permit Fees
■ By THYDA DUONG Staff Writer
Carr, who owns the shop with his wife, Suzy, is one of many who find value and satisfaction in restoring and o learn Doug Carr’s repairing classic cars, but is passion, one need not among a minority who dedisearch very far – it’s in his cate their business to doing so. name. Having “always had an Over the last three decades, infatuation with cars,” Carr Carr’s shop has worked on opened The Wood ’N Carr in Long Beach resident Jim Williams’ 1957 Chevy fourSignal Hill 34 years ago to door wagon was showcased at the recent 10th roughly 3,000 vehicles rangservice cars requiring wooden Annual Summer Stampede Car Show at Mayfair ing from Fords and Chevrolets parts, specializing in the field Park in Lakewood. (Photograph by the Business to Pontiacs and Oldsmobiles. “We work on all different of old woodie station wagons. Journal’s Thomas McConville) models because these old wooden n Business Journal INSIDE station wagons were built by Marketplace. Pg 31 n Watchdog. Pg 2 almost all the manufacturers,” n Newswatch. Pgs 3-8 Carr said, noting that for him, Pat West Is restoring cars is a “functional art The New City n News In Brief. Pgs 11-13 form” – one that requires time and Manager Of n Health & Fitness. Pg 18-21 Long Beach, Pg 3 dedication. On average, a woodie n Real Estate. Pgs 22-24 requires several years to restore. n Leases/Transactions. Pg 24 “When you see one of these old Making n And So It Goes . . . Pg 26 restored woodies on the road, you Sense Of realize how much time has actualn Biz Quiz. Pg 27 Medicare, ly gone into putting them back n Perspective. Pgs 28-29 Pg 18 there,” he said. “There were so n On The Market . . . Pg 30 many hundreds of hours of hand Long Beach Business Journal labor on these cars when they 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 were originally built. They were Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 PAID actually set up in more of a pro562/988-1222 • www.lbbj.com duction type [arrangement] than we are today, so it’s difficult to reproduce what some of these people were doing 50 years ago in the woodworking world.” And since that time, woodies themselves have evolved from being luxury vehicles at their as
• Pat West Named Long Beach City Manager • Running On Empty: LNG Terminal Terminated After Three Years Of Discussion • Union Leader Defends Project Labor Agreements
The Quotes “There’s
not one [economist] who believes we’re going to continue to grow at a faster rate. They all believe – and we believe also – that the economy is going to be decelerating.”
Please Continue To Page 18
■ By GEORGE ECONOMIDES Publisher ho’s responsible and W what can we do about it? Those were the questions most often heard from readers following a Business Journal story showing that the number of city employees paid $100,000 or more in base salary had doubled in one year and tripled in the past two years – all occurring at a time when elected officials continued to discuss a tax increase to pay for needed services. The information compiled by the Business Journal in its annual listing of the city’s “$100,000 Club” had always stirred emotions among citizens, but not like this year’s, which showed that one in every 8.5 of some 5,800 city employee positions was budgeted at $90,000 or more. What especially riled readers was the statement by Mayor Bob Foster, when he released the 2008 budget, that the city is “living pay check to pay check.”
“How can he make that statement with a straight face?” asked one reader. “Doesn’t he know about all the huge increases in pay?”
Hospitality & Tourism Industry Update And Annual Meeting Sites Guides See 16-Page Insert
The Business Journal story evidently caught most elected officials off guard. According to one city councilmember, they were not aware of the dollar amount of Please Continue To Page 8
Magnolia Industrial Group: Coming Up From The Ashes
Although many improvements have been made within the Magnolia Industrial Group area, there is still work to be done, including paving the streets. (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
■ By REINA V. SLUTSKE Staff Writer n 1990, the area near the Los Angeles River up to Magnolia Avenue was a cauldron of crime, simmering with graffiti and Ihomelessness as well as prostitution along Pacific Coast Highway to the north. Vandals were ripping out piping outside of buildings through Anaheim and 12th streets. Please Continue To Page 12
– Richard Weiss, executive vice president and chief investment officer at City National Bank
“ . . . less than 20 percent of the kids who enter high school graduate from a four-year school. I wondered what we were doing for the 80 percent of students who either have different interests or somehow get disillusioned with school. The academy in San Diego seems to be one of the answers.” – Mayor Bob Foster announcing the Construction Tech Academy to begin in the fall for high school students
“Long Beach had another stellar growth year. The number of [booked] room nights, year-over-year, increased by 10%. Over the last five years, production has increased by 56% – from 155,450 room nights to 242,387. And that increase occurred despite a 49% growth of exhibit and meeting space in the West Coast [market], cities like Las Vegas, San Diego and Anaheim.” – Steve Goodling, president/CEO, Long Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau “We’re hoping to get our half of the story out, the good half. One of the things that has happened to us in the past is that the press picks up on the headline-grabbing incidents at the port. People from around the world actually come in expecting this place to have trash and dirt everywhere, and they’re just amazed at what a clean operation we have here.” – Robert Kanter, managing director of planning and environmental affairs, Port of Long Beach “Cities are chasing retail because it gets them sales tax. But if everyone is chasing retail, who is creating the space we need for good-quality manufacturing jobs? A lot of people, especially in Los Angeles, are concerned that the middle class is eroding, and industrial space can make room – Jack Kyser, chief economist, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation, in the Business Journal’s 2nd Quarter Real Estate report for those middle-class jobs.” “We’re the first museum in the United States to earn the status of a Climate Action Leader by the National Climate Registry. We are measuring, certifying and voluntarily reporting our greenhouse gas emissions . . . As part of the city, I like to think we’re helping to establish the commitment of the city to these initiatives.” – Jerry Schubel, president/CEO, Aquarium of the Pacific
etcetera . . . Downtown Long Beach was listed as one of the top 10 revived downtowns in the United States. The recognition came in the April issue of ULX, the monthly magazine of the Urban Land Institute. It’s beginning to sound like a broken record, but no one in a position of authority seems to care or is offering any solutions. Long Beach residents’ per-capita spending in retail stores is next to last of the 75 California cities with $1.25 billion or more in sales.
Lyon Realty Advisors unveiled design changes to its West Gateway project during a redevelopment agency study session in mid-April. The main changes to the project, which is bounded by West 3rd Street, Broadway, Magnolia and Chestnut Avenues, include increasing the number of units from 265 to 291, and shifting the heart of the retail zone from Chestnut to Broadway.
The $100,000 Club: City employee salaries are soaring as 528 employees – more than double a year ago – budgeted for six-figure base salary. That’s alarming considering Mayor Bob Foster stated publicly last week that the City of Long Beach “is living pay check to pay check.”
One of the most contentious, divisive issues to face this city in decades is back on the agenda for tonight’s (January 16) Long Beach City Council meeting. It’s called a labor peace agreement, but its name is not indicative of a serene, working-together atmosphere one might anticipate. This is a heated conflict pitting the business community against a hotel union that has contributed heavily to the election of several councilmembers, and whose aim is to unionize local hotels even though hotel workers have not asked to be unionized.
A storm of controversy has descended on Long Beach over a report that outlines the results of an audit conducted on the office of former Long Beach Auditor Gary Burroughs. The report, made public last week by present City Auditor Laura Doud, accuses Burroughs of conducting his office in an unprofessional manner. Burroughs, however, claims that the audit itself was conducted unprofessionally, and that most of the questions it raises could have been answered if the auditors had simply taken the time to contact him.
Business Journal stories about 12 percent salary increases for city employees already making six-figure salaries has led a city council committee to recommend that a management hiring freeze take effect immediately, and that a change be made to the annual salary resolution so these types of raises no longer occur. Long Beach City College celebrates an impressive 80th anniversary this year, but newly appointed Superintendent/ President Eloy Oakley isn’t about to let the institution just fall back on tradition. “Well, the way I like to put it is, my predecessor, Dr. Jan Kehoe, sort of paved a road, and it’s my job now to start driving down that road and to try to find ways to advance the college based on that foundation.”
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• Another Dose Of Medicine For The Economy As Fed Cuts Interest Rate To Three Percent • Charting A New Path For CSULB College Of Business; A Conversation With Incoming Dean Solt
• Concerns Mount As Economy Flirts With Recession
• Credit Card Companies Tighten Their Wallets; Debt Hits $971 Billion
• Developers Unveil Preliminary Plan For Seaport Marina February 19-March 3, 2008
Food Prices Increase Across The Board Judge Rules For City In Suit Against Airport EIR
• Economic ‘Tsunami’ Sweeps Over Financial Services Industry
n By STACY CLEMENTS Staff Writer
regardless of whether it’s produce or dry goods,” alifornia is the says Dave Heylen, vice president of nation’s largest agricultural producer, communications for the California and its agricultural commodities not only G r o c e r s Association. “It’s supply local grocery stores but are also impacting the groexported throughout cery industry in multiple ways.” the nation and overseas. However, weathWhile Ralphs Grocery Co. er conditions, water shortages, energy spokesperson Terry O’Neil declined to costs, poor crop production, insect infesta- Fresh-produce prices can increase due to higher demand or limited comment on the tion, crop disease and supply. Crop disease, virus, insect infestation and high farm operat- chain’s prices, he demand affect the bot- ing costs can also affect food prices. (Photograph by the Business said the company uses both local and tom-line price cus- Journal’s Thomas McConville) tomers pay for both fruits and vegetables. But the cost international growfresh produce and dry goods. And to fill up a grocery cart exceeds ers to supply the stores, depending on the seasonality of the item. given current conditions, that $20 and continues to rise. price is poised to go up. “What you’re feeling across the Ralphs is a division of The Twenty dollars could buy a loaf board is increased energy costs. It Kroger Co., which operates more of bread, a gallon of milk, a quar- just has a ripple effect through the than 3,000 stores nationwide. ter pound of cheese and some entire food distribution [system] Please Continue To Page 16
• Hispanic Businesses Continue To Expand Presence In Long Beach • Hybrid SUVs Cruise Into The Auto Market • Judge’s Ruling Voids Proposed Home Depot On Studebaker Road • Marriott Residence Inn Breaks Ground At Queensway Bay • Mayor Unveils Plan For $571 Million Infrastructure Bond; Calls For Parcel Tax
Smithsonian Week Pays Tribute To The ’50s n By THYDA DUONG Staff Writer
• $90 Million Lyon Project To Kick Off West Gateway Development
s America’s national educational facility, the Smithsonian Institution boasts an impressive 19 museums, nine research centers and more than 136 million objects, artworks and specimens. And while the Smithsonian has more than 140 affiliates around the world, only one of those is a city: Long
• Press-Telegram At The Mercy Of MediaNews Group • State Senate Committee Kills Sick-Leave Bill
n Newswatch. Pgs 2-10 n Watchdog. Pg 4 n Dollars & Sense. Pgs 11-12 n Real Estate. Pgs 14-15 n On The Market . . . Pg 14 n Retail Industry. Pgs 16-17 n Biz Quiz. Pgs 18-19 n Perspective. Pgs 20-21 n Foreign Exchange Report. Pg 22
• Tying The Knot: Thriving Wedding Industry Lends Support To Slowing Economy • Waiting For Mayor’s Appointments – 51 Vacancies On City Commissions
Beach. The Arts Council for Long Beach signed an agreement with the Smithsonian Institution on behalf of the City of Long Beach 10 years ago, and has since brought 32 scholars to the International City and provided programming to roughly 125,000 people as part of its Smithsonian Week. Every March, the Arts Council hosts one week of free in-school n Business Journal Marketplace. Pg 23 JetBlue Adds Destinations. See Pg 9
CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED
“Our economic and social well being requires us to fix our physical facilities and invest in the
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hat felt like a never-ending legal battle between the City of Long Beach and the Long Beach Unified School District W (LBUSD) appears to have finally been resolved, as an Orange County judge last week ruled in favor of the city and found the Long Beach Airport environmental impact report (EIR) to be valid. “It is clear from the evidence in the record that the intention of the project was not to expand the Long Beach Municipal Airport [‘LGB’] flight operations, but to construct improvements to support facilities to accommodate no more and no less than the forecasted number of passengers resulting from the number of flights actually permitted by the existing, lawful Airport Noise Compatibility Ordinance,” Real Estate Quarterly wrote Judge Thierry Patrick Colaw in Feature Stories on the P-T Lofts By the final ruling issued on February 15. OCTOBERfive Development and The Long Beach City Council in June Alchemy / design + architecture 2006 approved the EIR necessary for a renSee 24-Page Insert ovation project that would increase the airport’s terminal from 56,320 square feet to approximately 98,000 square feet. Shortly after that, however, LBUSD – and eventually the Long Beach PTA – sued the city, challenging the adequacy of the EIR and claiming it failed to sufficiently Please Continue To Page 2
‘Promoting Literacy One Reader At A Time’
PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE
PAID Long Beach, CA PERMIT NO. 254
LNG Litigation Hearing Delayed Until March
n By ALEXIA TERZOPOULOS Staff Writer ast year, the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners voted to terminate the environmental review process for Sound Energy Solutions’ (SES) proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) import facility in the Port of Long Beach, effectively ending the project’s run. However, SES responded by filing a writ of mandate with the Los Angeles Superior Court, asking the judge to order the harbor commission to complete the environmental impact report. A hearing on the litigation has been delayed since last October, and although a court date had been scheduled for February 11, it will now be delayed until March. n
Foundation Works To Support Long Beach Public Libraries
The Pike Honors Kids With Heart Winner. See Pg 17
Long Beach Business Journal 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 562/988-1222 • www.lbbj.com
and community events, presentations and lectures that showcase the expertise of a trio of visiting scholars. While topics vary from year to year – such as folk tales, Mexican-American culture and the history of toys, fashion and film – all relate to American cul-
n By ALEXIA TERZOPOULOS Staff Writer
The Long Beach Public Library Foundation works to support, but not supplant, funding for the city’s 12 public libraries, according to Executive Director Sara Pillet. (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
n By THYDA DUONG Staff Writer “I slid into my pace, and I felt the water below me shudder. It wasn’t a rogue wave or a current. It felt like something else. It was moving closer. The water was shaking harder and buckling below me. All at once I felt very small and very alone in the deep dark sea. Then I heard a sound.” – Excerpt from Lynne Cox’s “Grayson”
an effort to engage community members of all ages and Iyearnbackgrounds, the Long Beach Public Library Foundation every hosts “Long Beach Reads One Book,” a weeklong program that encourages all residents to read the same book and participate Please Continue To Page 13 in public discussions and activities that
future. Remember, crime will continue to look for opportunities in our neglect. The basic infrastructure that we all depend upon in everyday civic life is literally crumbling around us. And, quite simply, it’s time to fix things. Later this year, I will ask the council to place a citywide community investment bond measure before the voters.” – Mayor Bob Foster during his annual State of the City Address “My job is to protect the health and safety of the citizens of Long Beach. The port is a great economic engine, [but] it’s also the largest source . . . of air pollution in Southern California. We know we have to clean it up.” – Mayor Bob Foster during his annual interview with the Business Journal in March
“It’ to b “It
“I think it’s important to note that the Port of Long Beach will continue to be an environmental leader, and we’re very proud of the fact that we’re taking
these initiatives to clean our environment while we continue to grow green . . . Our challenge in the future is to continue to be able to attract cargo while we’re doing positive things for the environment.” – Richard Steinke, executive director, Port of Long Beach
“Even in a weak economy . . . what people are looking for is a place where they can go and engage – bring your family, bring your friends, have a good time, feel safe, feel comfortable. And when you do that, people actually still do shop. It puts them in a frame of mind where they’re . . . transported to a better place. And when you feel better, you, quite frankly, spend more money . . . That’s what we’re tapping into.” – Rick Caruso, founder and CEO of Caruso Affiliated and developer of The Grove and other retail centers during the annual Long Beach Commercial Real Estate Council luncheon “If
you think our future as a nation is tied to our citizens’ ability to be creative and daring, to provide the leadership necessary to meet current and unforeseen challenges, and to be able to compete in the ever-changing global marketplace, then you fully understand how vital it is that we provide the best education possible for our youth.” – Business Journal Publisher George Economides in support of Long Beach City College District Bond Measure E
etcetera . . . The $100,000 Club: One in 10 city employees earns $100,000 or more in base salary and one in seven earns $90,000 plus.
While a growing number of media outlets report on the dramatically rising odds of an economic recession, many of the world’s leading economists are assuming a less anxious position. Most are reluctant to predict a recession – even though forecasts point to an economy that may continue to show sings of weakness and deceleration through 2008.
The national recession is expected to place increasing pressure on the U.S. job market, which last month [November] shed 533,000 positions. Moreover, the nation is poised to lose another 2 million jobs over the next year, pushing the unemployment rate to 8.5%.
When Lennar Homes of California decided to sell its interest in SeaPort Marina last fall, siblings Amy and Raymond Lin seized the opportunity and purchased the property, becoming lead developers of the project. Amy and Raymond, who own TakiSun, Inc. and are former owners of the site, recognized the need for a fresh approach.
Citing the lack of unanimity among councilmembers, Mayor Bob Foster altered his citywide infrastructure proposal to ensure that revenue generated from a new tax would be specifically dedicated to the plan. As a result, the tax would require support from two-thirds of the city council as well as the voters to be enacted.
It takes a two-thirds majority of voters to pass Mayor Bob Foster’s proposed tax increase and, ironically, two-thirds of the money he’s raised comes from outside Long Beach. Here comes Hollywood. The billion-dollar industry might soon pump some of its revenue-generating hoopla into the heart of Long Beach. Jack O’Halloran plans to turn the former Boeing 717 site into the “largest independent production facility in the world.”
Economists at the UCLA Anderson Forecast have held a relatively optimistic outlook for the direction of the general economy, largely refuting the idea that the nation is in a recession. But as reports of rising unemployment rates emerge, the outlook for the national economy becomes even cloudier.
Even though the new cell phone law that went into effect July 1 only applies to drivers, the California Chamber of Commerce warns that certain business owners may also be indirectly impacted by the restriction, which has triggered discussions about employer liability – particularly among those who require employees to be on the road a lot and to regularly use their cell phones.
A study released April 23 indicates that California has one of the worst legal systems in the country, and experts are concerned that the assessment means businesses and large employers are less likely to set up shop within the state. And given the state’s financial crisis, the finding could bear serious economic implications.
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• Big Banks To Feel The Heat Of Federal Stress Test • Businesses Easy Targets For ADA, Title 24 Lawsuits • Council Approves Employee Furloughs With Exceptions For Police And Fire • Creatives Set Up Shop In New Long Beach ‘Design District’ • Delaware North Companies To Manage Queen Mary;
June 23-July 6, 2009
Stimulus Bill Slow To Stop Job Losses In Golden State
Hostmark Hospitality Group Out By Mid-September
$620,000 For Local Skate Park Sparks Controversy
A Community Un-Divided
• East Anaheim Street Businesses Seek Improvement District Status
By ANGELA C. ALLEN Senior Writer
• First Part Of Year Will Be Rough, ‘But Don’t Give Up Hope’ By MARIE LOGGIA-KEE
• ‘God Save The Queen,’ Another Change In Stakeholders
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• Groundbreaking Ceremony For New Parking Structure Kicks-Off Airport Improvements • Infrastructure And Transportation Projects Set To Get Stimulus Funds • Long Beach In Gear To Become A More Pedal-Friendly City; Sharrows Raise Some Eyebrows, But Bike Officials Say Safety Has Improved • Long Beach Named Most Business-Friendly Big City In Los Angeles County
Please Continue To Page 16
Long Beach City Prosecutor Tom Reeves and the department’s 16 attorneys handle roughly 2,000 new incoming cases a month. The state’s proposal to release nonviolent criminals to save money would cause an influx of crime in Los Angeles County, says Reeves, who plans to run for a third term next year. (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
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Panel Headed By Southern California Edison President/CEO Alan Fohrer Looks Newswatch Pgs 2-8 At The ‘Future Of Energy Pg 9 Smart Energy’ See Pg 9 Cultural Arts Scene Pgs 12-13
• Long Beach Transit Rolls On Despite Recession, Readies For Green Future
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Long Beach Business Journal 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 562/988-1222 • www.lbbj.com
FOCUS ON NONPROFITS
June 29 Golf Tournament To Help Raise Funds For A Third Facility In City As Need Grows
• U.S. Air Force Orders 15 Boeing C-17s, Extending Production To Summer 2010
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Biz Quiz – Pgs 14-15
• Study Of Long Beach Breakwater May Make Waves
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Long Beach Attorney To Be Sworn In June 25th By ANGELA C. ALLEN Senior Writer
Kids Without A Home Have Place To Call Their Own
• New Charity President Aims To Bring Ronald McDonald House To Long Beach
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Incoming Chamber Chair Lofstrom Discusses Priorities, Challenges
INSERT – HOSPITALITY/TOURISM
Poly High Alums Perspective Pgs 16-17 McGinest, Realty Views; Third Sector Report; Snoop Dogg Giving Back To BizLaw; Business & Ethics The Community See Pg 18 LBBJ Marketplace Pg 19
• Los Angeles Port Ordered To Study Gambol’s Shipyard Plan
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Dora Jacildo is executive director of Children Today, which provides homeless children up to six years of age a safe, nurturing place to spend their days. Jacildo oversees the organization’s two Long Beach facilities, Playhouse West, 1301 W. 21st St., and Playhouse North, 1900 E. South St. She describes the nonprofit’s service as “daycare meets therapeutic preschool.”(Photograph by Please Continue To Page 18 the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
The Quotes “It’s going to require sacrifice, and it is going to require the combined efforts of all of us to get through this. It is not going to be easy, and it is not going to be without some distress on everyone’s part.” – Mayor Bob Foster in discussing the projected general fund deficit of $19.2 million “It is such a treat to travel out of this airport, as opposed to any other airport, because the sense of traveling in the 1940s and ’50s is here. It is the way it used to be – a little bit more elegant, a little bit less stressful.” – New Long Beach Airport Director Mario Rodriguez “All the major ports in the State of California are feeling the pain, and people are watching and trying to determine when are we going to hit bottom out
there. No matter where you go in the U.S., the ports are all singing the same tune: business is down.” – Jack Kyser, senior vice president and chief economist, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation “When
Obama was making promises during his candidacy, I gave the likelihood of any healthcare reform at the federal level happening in the first few years of this first term about a zero percent chance because the system is so cumbersome and dysfunctional and complicated. Clearly now that is not the case [about reform].” – Barry Arbuckle, CEO, MemorialCare Medical Centers
some promising signs of stabilization in the economy, including five consecutive months of declining announced job cuts, [the latest] employment report showing higher-than-expected job losses will undoubtedly rattle some nerves. The economy is still in an extremely fragile state.” – John Challenger, CEO of global placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas on the mid-year job outlook
etcetera . . . The $100,000 Club: Union and merit salary increases continued during the past year despite layoffs, furloughs and fee hikes. According to project manager Craig Johnson, the City of Long Beach Enterprize Zone issued 5,850 hiring tax credits with a potential one-year value of $78 million to local businesses in 2008. This is a 34 percent increase from 2007.
The Long Beach City Council, on October 6, unanimously approved a revised plan for the development of Douglas Park, the 261-acre former Boeing manufacturing site located north of the Long Beach Airport. The new plan – which replaces the development agreement approved in 2004 – eliminates 1,400 proposed housing units. As part of the ongoing program to replace older trucks with new, cleaner models, the Port of Long Beach recently awarded subsidies for 100 new trucks, of which 98 were alternatively fueled liquefied natural gas models. The trucks will add to the growing local fleet of loweremission vehicles that, under the port’s Clean Trucks Program, will reduce truckrelated air pollution by 80 percent by 2012, according to port officials.
As federal Judge Sonia M. Sotomayor readies for U.S. Senate confirmation hearings in a few weeks, local lawyers and legal scholars say she’ll likely be confirmed as a justice of the U.S. Supreme Court despite opposition from conservative Republicans, a controversial 2001 lecture and questions about a 2008 decision involving racial profiling.
The Long Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau is ramping up marketing efforts when many companies are slashing those budgets – and it could be paying off. While some hospitality/tourism figures hit double-digit declines in neighboring cities, Long Beach has managed to stay afloat posting a single-digit drop. And location lately is not the city’s sole selling point.
February real estate report: Every sector of the real estate market is feeling the pinch of the recession, and industry experts and professionals are reading the tea leaves to see if a combination of falling home prices, a new administration and old-fashioned determination will be enough to revive demand.
The Long Beach City Council on May 12 voted unanimously to approve the final environmental impact report for the proposed $750 million Middle Harbor Redevelopment Project at the Port of Long Beach. The council also denied four appeals that challenged the adequacy of the 1,500-page report.
President Obama signed into law the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights Act of 2009. The bill sets new rules for credit card companies, including restrictions on giving credit cards to those under 18, curbs on interest rate increases and contract changes, greater limits on the fees and penalties that can be charged and other sweeping reforms.
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• Airport Allocates Six Available Carrier Slots – Two More Airlines To Serve Long Beach: Allegiant Air And Frontier Airlines
• Alamitos Bay Marina Rebuild Costs Surge
• Building A Cultural Arts Foundation; City Council Reviews Five Arts Initiatives
• Charter Proposal About Port Money Worries Shipping Group,
November 23-December 6, 2010
Past Harbor Commissioners; Mayor Denies Proposal Is ‘Money Grab’ • Corporate Disasters Trigger Concerns Over Global Responsibility • East Anaheim Street Becomes Business Improvement District
Long Beach’s A Conversation With . . . CUP Fee Long Beach Chamber Of Commerce Higher Than President And CEO Randy Gordon All Nearby Cities Another Trucking Firm – And Its 250 Employees – Expanding To Cerritos
• From Bull Riders To Car Drivers, New Indy Racing League CEO Bernard Eyes Success
ext year marks a 100-yearN long relationship between the City of Long Beach and the
• Haiti Earthquake Challenged Local Medical Team; 11 Trauma Doctors And Nurses From Memorial And St. Francis Aided Victims • Kroc Center Kaput: Salvation Army Cancels Multimillion-Dollar Project • LBBJ Survey: Long Beach Conditional Use Permit Higher Than All Nearby Cities • Long Beach Memorial Takes Over Management Of Community Hospital • Long Beach Symphony Season Saved; Tentative Deal Reached With Union • Measure D, Part II: Is Oil Revenue At The Heart Of Charter Vote?
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City Continues Legacy Of Oil Properties And Port Development
■ By SEAN BELK Staff Writer
■ By SEAN BELK, Staff Writer and GEORGE ECONOMIDES, Publisher flat fee of $11,000 charged to businesses by the City of Long Beach for a conditional use permit (CUP) is – with one exception – the highest such fee in the area according to a phone survey of area cities conducted by the Business Journal. That one exception is the City of Los Angeles, which uses a sliding scale that starts at $2,000 and could reach $15,000 depending on city costs such as staff time. Currently, there is no sliding scale in Long Beach. The survey was conducted following complaints from businesspeople that the city is unfriendly to business, overcharges for fees such as the CUP and delays projects. By law, the city’s fee can only recoup expenses – primarily personnel costs. The fee cannot be a revenue generator for the city. The issue of cost arose after the Long Beach City Council in midOctober imposed a citywide CUP requirement on new trucking facilities, truck yards or new businesses with trucking-related uses with warehouses. When informed of the cost, several councilmembers asked staff to examine a sliding scale approach. The council action was taken after the city’s planning commission voted 7-0 last May that no CUP be required, but opted instead for specific
PART 1 OF 2
Understanding The Tidelands: A Rich History Of Public Trust
Randy Gordon, born and raised in Lubbock, Texas, has served as president and CEO of Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce since April 1994. (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
t is difficult to consider Long Beach a businessIare under friendly city when some city councilmembers the thumb of unions and business owners shy away from local political involvement, on top of the hardships brought on by a tough economy. That is the attitude of Randy Gordon, the president and CEO of the Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, who has led the organization for more than 16 years. As an eternal optimist regarding the economy, Gordon said he has dealt with bad times before and all staff can do is work harder than before on the top priorities of the chamber – advocacy, public policy, member services and community development. Gordon manages the effects of what he calls
“time poverty” while he involves himself with numerous nonprofit boards aside from his chamber work, including most recently becoming the chairman of the Miller Children’s Hospital Advisory Board. He is also on the Board of Trustees for St. Mary Medical Center, the Long Beach City College Foundation Board of Governors, the Salvation Army Board of Advisors, the California Conference for Equality and Justice, the YMCA and the California State University, Long Beach Advisory Board for the School of Engineering. He is the treasurer of the Long Beach Ronald McDonald House Board, which is opening a new house in 2011, and is a member of the parent board, Please Continue To Page 30
Local Holiday Shopping, Dining Outlook – Pages 18-22 Local Retailers Optimistic For A Better Holiday Season • Restaurateurs Hoping For Improvement
Healthcare Quarterly – Pages 24-29 Coping With Job Loss: Battling Stress, Anxiety • Prevalence Of Type 2 Diabetes In Youth Rising
• New Credit Card Laws Change The Playing Field For Consumers And Issuers
State of California that has facilitated the development of the nation’s second busiest trade complex, a sprawling harbor of marinas, commercial infrastructure and a cash crop of oil fields, in an area known as the tidelands. In light of that anniversary, and because of the recent vote on Measure D that is expected to result in the transfer of tens of millions of more Port of Long Beach dollars to the city’s Tidelands Operating Fund (TOF), the Business Journal is presenting a two-part story on the tidelands. Part one focuses on the history and the relationships among the city, port and the state. Part two zeroes in on the money – where it’s been spent and what the needs are – and why the TOF is reportedly going to be in the red in a few years. It all started in 1911, when the state granted the city control over the tidelands area in trust for the state during a time when Long Beach was largely undeveloped. The tidelands are defined as land and waterways from the mean high tide line to three miles offshore (refer to drawing on jump page). The purpose was to develop, “commerce, navigation, fisheries and recreation,” under a public trust doctrine, meaning
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Fire Inspection Fees For Rental Units, Low-Rise Hotels And Motels Moving Forward
May Go Before City Council owners of rental property earlier tions, but property owners comthis month to discuss proposed plained they were not given an As Early As Next Month !
Long Beach Business Journal 2599 E. 28th Street, Suite 212 Signal Hill, CA 90755-2139 562/988-1222 • www.lbbj.com
• Port Examines Options After Mayor Uses Line-Item Veto On New Headquarters
• ‘Paying For The Ride’ – The Debate Over Credit And Debit Card Swipe Fees
■ By AMY DEMPSEY Staff Writer Beach Fire Department representatives met with L ong
fire inspection fees, which, if approved, are intended to generate enough revenue to save the jobs of at least three firefighters. The fees were proposed in September during budget negotia-
opportunity for input. The city council directed staff to conduct meetings with impacted owners and return with a proposal. The original proposal involved Please Continue To Page 15
The Quotes “I think 2010 is going to be a year of rebuilding. The real potential problem is the fiscal condition of the State of California. We’re uncertain how that’s going to affect Long Beach.” – Mayor Bob Foster in the Business Journal’s 2010 Economic Outlook presentation “We’re
setting aggressive targets on the march toward clean air. It’s a very robust process. We just keep on pushing and pushing that envelope to make sure that as we grow, we’re reducing the impact on the community. And we have to do so in such a way that it does not make us anti-competitive, that allows the port customers who are so important to this economy to continue to grow their business.” – Richard Steinke, executive director, Port of Long Beach “The
times have been challenging for all of us, but Broadway [corridor] has savvy business owners. Some had to redo their business model to survive – Sidney Cramer, owner of Spa Sidney and president of the On Broadway Merchants Association and flourish in this climate.”
“I really try to govern in a manner that I would like to be governed myself. I’m very candid with people. I have a very strong internal moral compass
that I follow. It frustrates people at times. I mean, you look around the city [and] at various times, I’ve irritated everyone in some way, but I do it out of a spirit of trying to help the city.” – Mayor Bob Foster in June as he prepares for his second four-year term
think an improvement of no more than 15 percent for 2011. As a rough estimate, that’s somewhat better but it’s obviously not back to the level that we had in 2006 when it was typical to sell more than 16 million units.” – Paul Taylor, chief economist, National Automotive Dealers Association, on 2011 new car sales projections
etcetera . . . The $100,000 Club: 574 city employees are members, while one in five city workers are earning $90,000 or more in base salary. Most are police and fire personnel. After much heated debate, the Long Beach City Council voted 7-2 at its July 6 meeting to form a labor agreement for work on the airport’s $45 million terminal project – including a new concourse and boarding lounge.
The Long Beach Community College District has partnered with global investment banking firm Goldman Sachs’ “10,000 Small Businesses” initiative to help small businesses in Long Beach and the Greater Los Angeles region to create jobs.
On the whole, 2010 was what those in the sports field might call a rebuilding year. A little pain and a lot of hope. It was certainly a year of trials, challenges and disappointments. The city faced a major budget deficit, unemployment hit a high of 14.7% in Long Beach and a stressed infrastructure continued to deteriorate.
It was perhaps one of the longest, most intense and timeconsuming volunteer efforts in the history of Long Beach. There was a 100-person task force, hundreds of citizens participating in work shops and town hall-style meetings, and regular updates presented publicly to the mayor and city council over a nearly three-year period. When the city council received the final “Long Beach 2010 . . . The Strategic Plan” in December 2000, the city had “a roadmap that would enable it to identify goals and objectives and track its progress toward achieving them,” said Strategic Plan Chairman Doug Otto.
Plans to expand the Long Beach I-710 Freeway, a major corridor that connects to the Port of Long Beach, includes a “zeroemission” alternative that would revolutionize the way goods are transported in the future, according to project planners. The proposal to extend more lanes to ease congestion and cut down on air pollution has been in the works for several years after agencies conducted a study on the freeway from 2001 to 2005.
Now that the healthcare legislation has been signed into law by President Obama, Americans are beginning to absorb how the changes will impact them at home and at work. Some details remain to be finalized by congress, and small and large business owners, human resources personnel, healthcare providers and consumers will probably continue to have questions given the law’s scope and its effects, which vary widely depending on age and employment status.
The Downtown Long Beach Associates is hard at work developing what its members call a “cohesive, collaborative and market-based retail vision and strategy” for Downtown Long Beach. The DLBA coordinated two Retail Visioning meetings to collect ideas from business owners, residents and public officials and discuss what the community would like to see in the future for downtown as it relates to commercial tenancy.
D T b q B h v
T ra m ni ex in an to G
• Airport Breaks Ground On New Passenger Concourse • A Shocker: 2010 Census Data Shows Long Beach Added Only 735 People In 10 Years • Business Journal Calls On City Officials To Waive Fees For Startup Businesses • Chris Lytle To Replace Retiring Richard Steinke As New Executive Director Of Port
Goi Busineng Green ss Ti
Commit p #13 To Litter-F ree Lo A By Beco ng Beach ming A Long “No Litte Beach Busines r Zone” s. LitterFre Visit: eLB.org
• Economists: Recovery To Be Slightly ‘More Visible’ During 2011 July 19-August 1, 2011
• Evolution Hospitality Of Newport Beach Named To Manage The Queen Mary
Redevelopment Agencies In Limbo, But Fight To Stay Alive Continues Long Beach RDA Projects Held Up; Agency Groups To Take Battle To Court As Tens Of Thousands Of Jobs Statewide At Stake ■ By SEAN BELK Staff Writer
• Eye-Popping Numbers For Fire Department Overtime: 2010 Average Nearly $40,000
he future looks bleak for T hundreds of redevelopment agencies (RDAs) across
ronmental health bureau manager, the city has seen a “fairly dramatic decrease in the number of [beach] advisories over this summer so far compared to 2010, looking at April, May and June.” Those statistics show five fewer closures April 2010 to April 2011,
California, including the Long Beach RDA, after the legislature approved two bills last month that call for either eliminating redevelopment or allowing the agencies to continue in a trimmed-down version. But local governments aren’t giving up just yet, and are expected to fight the state takeaway in upcoming legal battles to save what they consider a critical economic development tool to revitalize communities and generate revenues and jobs. In grappling with a $26 billion structural deficit this year, Gov. Jerry Brown has advocated since January a plan to abolish redevelopment agencies, once created to remove blight and provide affordable housing through a portion of property taxes that finances development and city improvements. In fact, as mayor of Oakland, Brown used redevelopment to remove blight in that city. He proclaimed the agencies have
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• Green Building Industry To Prosper With New Initiatives; California’s Charge Toward Energy Efficiency Aims To Spur Job Growth • Long Beach City Council Votes To Ban Use Of Plastic Bags
Two RDA Projects On This City-Block Area Downtown On Hold
• Long Beach Health Department Food Inspection System Earns A Thumbs Up • Long Beach Memorial Medical Center Acquires Community Hospital
What you see in the photograph above may remain that way for a decade or longer if the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency is eliminated. The site is bounded by 3rd Street on the left, Elm Street above, Broadway at right and Long Beach Boulevard below. It has two projects planned: The Art Exchange at 3rd and Long Beach Boulevard (using part of the former Acres of Books building pictured); and a mixed-use project to the right by City Ventures, LLC that includes 44 residential units. (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
Testing Program Records Progress Of Long Beach Recreational Water Quality Local Water Quality Improvements Supported By Surrounding Cities’ Efforts, State Funding ■ By TIFFANY RIDER Staff Writer n a city that still struggles Irecreational with a past reputation of poor water quality, a collaborative effort by Long Beach city employees, elected officials
• Long Beach Touts Nation’s First Bike-Friendly Business Districts
Medical Office Market Shows ‘Strength,’ Lacks New Supply
• One Year Later: How The Dodd-Frank Reform Bill Continues To Impact Financial Services Industry; Legislation ‘Creates Uncertainty’
Healthcare Professionals Stay Close To Hospitals, Seek ‘Medical Condos’ ■ By SEAN BELK Staff Writer
• Redevelopment Agencies In Limbo, But Fight To Stay Alive Continues
ith an upswing in W investment, sales and leasing activity, the medical office space sector in Long Beach is well positioned for continued
• Restaurateurs, Caterers See Rise In Demand For Sustainability; Local Eateries, Hotels And Vendors Shift To Eco-Friendly Practices
growth, according to local commercial real estate brokers and property managers. Healthcare professionals with a high line of credit and a close proximity to top-ranking hospitals – such as Memorial Medical Center, St. Mary Medical Center and the Long Beach Veterans Affairs hospital – have kept medical office space relatively healthy compared to the regular office space market that still suffers from high vacancy. Some new developments are expected to break ground in the next year. But, brokers said the area still lacks any substantial supply of high quality new medical office space as many build(Please Continue To Page 18)
! 10+ )&',
• South Korea Free Trade Agreement Boost To Local Exporters
and residents continues to improve the seven miles of coastline enjoyed almost year round. This collaborative effort is reflected in the results of Long Beach’s water quality program, which is under the direction of the Long Beach Health and
LBBJHistoryPages_Layout 1 3/10/12 10:52 AM Page 39
Human Services Department’s Environmental Health Bureau. The program provides data to support the improvement of beach water from the 5th Place beach downtown to the waters beneath the 2nd Street Bridge and Bay Shore. According to Nelson Kerr, envi-
Minutes With . . .
New Rotary President And EZ Champion Blake Christian
s the new president of the Rotary Club of Long Beach, a recent recipient of the statewide 2011 Public Service Award from the California Society of Certified Public Accountants and a former chair of the Long Beach Chamber, Blake E. Christian finds giving back to the community a rewarding and elemental part of being a businessperson in Long Beach. Christian, a certified public accountant (CPA) and tax partner at Holthouse Carlin & VanTright, LLP, started his working career in Downtown Los Angeles. He attended California State University, Long Beach for his undergraduate studies and earned his master’s degree from USC in 1985. His connections brought him to
Blake E. Christian is a partner with the certified public accounting firm Holthouse Carlin and VanTright, LLP. The firm is based in Los Angeles and has six branch locations, including Downtown Long Beach, from where Christian works. (Photograph
(Please Continue To Page 28) by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
• The Business Of Racing: Target, Chip Ganassi Walk The High-Dollar, High-Performance Tightrope
“Sustainability is not a destination you arrive at. It’s very elusive, and the challenge is to always be pursuing it.” – Jerry Schubel, president/CEO, Aquarium of the Pacific
“Policy makers may find comfort and support in satisfying the desires of interest groups in the present, but they sacrifice our future. As George Bernard Shaw said, ‘The government with the policy to rob Peter to pay Paul can be assured of the support of Paul.’” – Mayor Bob Foster during his annual State of the City Address
ass o it
“The concern is that the Port of Long Beach is simply being treated as an ATM machine by the city for purposes totally unrelated to the Tidelands Trust and the responsibilities of the city to the trust.” – John McLaurin, president, Pacific Merchant Shipping Association
the budget does get healthy, we should look at a more performance-based compensation plan. You shouldn’t get a raise just because you showed up for work.” – 3rd District Councilmember Gary DeLong in a Business Journal interview about city finances
“As we take the opportunity of the port’s centennial to reflect on its evolution, let us do so with pride and recognition that the port is a cornerstone of our
city. Examining the history of our port can only enlighten us on where we have been, how far we have progressed and how deeply we have planted the foundations for the future.” – Business Journal Publisher George Economides in saluting the Port of Long Beach on its centennial
iods he wn er 5.
es ts ve the ng ss ls ld as
etcetera . . . Deal to purchase World Trade Center office building as new headquarters for Port of Long Beach staff fails as new harbor commissioners vote against it. To appease concerns raised by the community, members of the California Coastal Commission expressed strong support in favor of adding a bike and pedestrian pathway to plans for replacing the Gerald Desmond Bridge.
India has okayed a deal for 10 Boeing C-17s. The near $4 billion purchase extends the line out to 2014.
The Long Beach City Council has taken initial steps toward reforming the city’s employee pension system, but city officials said there’s still a ways to go before solving budget shortfalls and a looming mountain of debt. At its February 15 meeting, councilmembers approved new retirement terms for four of the city’s nine employee unions, just two weeks after declaring an impasse with the city’s engineering employee union.
After more than three years of legal battles, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled against a key provision of the Port of Los Angeles’ Clean Trucks Program that bans independent truckers, or owner-operators, from servicing the port.
A transloading facility operated by one of the largest freight-handling, warehouse and transportation companies in the region may soon disappear – after being displaced by a new rail yard – if the company can’t find a suitable new location in the next year.
Ensemble Hotel Partners, LLC, has closed a joint venture investment with Carey Watermark Investors Inc. of approximately $88 million for two waterfront hotel properties in Long Beach: the Residence Inn Downtown Waterfront and the Hotel Maya.
Mid-year estimates show the City of Long Beach has received far more oil revenue than budgeted, and that money is being used as a much needed fix to a $5.1 million shortfall caused by under-performing incomes in other city departments. Sweeping changes to zoning and land use requirements in Downtown Long Beach aimed at encouraging private investment and future development were approved unanimously by the Long Beach Planning Commission at its December 1 meeting. Known as the Downtown Plan, it encompasses a 725-acre area within the downtown and includes projections for the next 25 years.
Claiming that their employees have been harassed by a union for the past three years – including visits to employee homes – a major hotel chain earlier this month said enough is enough and is seeking intervention by the National Labor Relations Board. The Hyatt Regency Long Beach, along with Hyatt Hotel Corp. properties in Indianapolis, San Francisco and Santa Clara, asked th NLRB to step in and conduct a secret ballot vote of hotel employees to determine if they wish to be represented by the labor union UniteHere.
LBBJHistoryPages_Layout 1 3/10/12 10:52 AM Page 40
• AQMD To Study Air Pollution At Long Beach Airport • AVIA Long Beach Becomes Hyatt The Pike Long Beach • Catholic Healthcare West Restructures, Changes Name To Dignify Health
• Local Economy To Strengthen In 2012, But It Will Be Slow Going
LONG B E
Going BusinessGreen Tip #25
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• Cities Head Into Unchartered Territory As They Dissolve Redevelopment Agency Assets
Break Ou t The Reusable Ba Small Retai gs – lers Must Adhere To The City’s Plastic Ba g Ban Law . Visit: Litter FreeLB.or g
January 17-30, 2012
• Long Beach Airport Operators Fear Fallout From Aviation Fuel Suit
As End Of Redevelopment Nears, City Officials See Bleak Picture
• Long Beach Courthouse Construction Ahead Of Schedule
Efforts Afoot To Extend Dissolution Deadline, But Legislative Support Uncertain
• New Downtown Plan Okayed By City Council
■ By SEAN BELK Staff Writer t’s only a matter of time before the current redevelopment system in California becomes a thing of the past, said local city officials, who are preparing to carry out state orders to dissolve the entities that for decades have financed millions of dollars in annual economic development through local property tax funding. Hundreds of redevelopment agencies, or RDAs, across the state will likely start shuttering operations soon and laying off workers. Pushed by Gov. Jerry Brown, lawmakers in Sacramento voted last year to scrap redevelopment as part of a budget package to balance the state’s billion-dollar fiscal crisis, while earmarking $1.7 billion of that money for schools and public safety. But what finally pulled the plug was a unanimous ruling announced late last month by the California Supreme Court, that upheld the
• Opposition Builds Over Port Of L.A.’s Rail Yard Analysis Raymond Lin, left, and his family own the 11-acre Seaport Marina Hotel property at 2nd Street and Pacific Coast Highway. They and developer David Malmuth, right, president of David Malmuth Development, Inc., on a 5-3 vote December 20 by the Long Beach City Council, were denied the right to present their second+pch mixed use project to the California Coastal Commission. Lin, through his firm Taki-Sun, Inc., spent $4.5 million on environmental reviews, marketing and analysis. Will this keep other developers from investing in the city? (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
second+pch Project: ‘This Is Our Dream . . . We Were Very Shocked’ Says Property Owner Lin Is It Deja Vu All Over Again For Developer David Malmuth Who Led DisneySea Effort?
“I am so upset that Alan and Bonnie Lowenthal could have done this when they knew the benefits of redevelopment here . . . They gave it away.” – Jane Netherton, president/CEO of International City Bank on State Senator Alan Lowenthal and Assemblymember Bonnie Lowenthal’s votes to do away with redevelopment agencies “Every grand city has a vibrant downtown. Just think about the cities you want to visit, whether
■ By KELSEY DUCKETT Contributing Writer fter four years of planA ning, design work and countless community meetings and studies, the saga of redeveloping the deteriorating SeaPort Marina Hotel at 2nd Street and Pacific Coast Highway came to a screeching halt, leaving the lingering question – is Long Beach business-friendly? Section B
ECONOMIC OUTLOOK 2012
it’s New York or San Francisco or San Diego’s Gaslamp District, or Paris or Rome. It really is the buzz of the city. Ten years from now, we’re going to have that.” – John Molina, chief financial officer of Long Beach-based Molina Healthcare, on the future of the city
The short answer, 3rd District Councilmember Gary DeLong said, is “no,” adding that the city council has a long way to go to be labeled “business-friendly.” “The Long Beach City Council is not pro-business or business friendly,” he said. “I think there are some councilmembers who don’t understand how the economy works – they don’t understand that time is money for a developer, so more delay means more cost.” Is the December 20 decision by the council to nix the $320 million mixed-use development project, for which property owner Raymond Lin of TakiSun Inc. had already invested more than $4.5 million, an example of the stance the city is taking on new development? Developer David Malmuth, and Lin, wouldn’t say the city is antibusiness. Instead, they said the
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“I come from the chapter of the [Mayor Beverly] O’Neill years. I’ve had my disappointments. Clearly, I saw then a city that was on the move. We were popular with a lot of other different cities in terms of what we were doing, our development, where we were going. It just seems that we’re kind of at a flat period of our popularity right now. I would really like to see a little bit more excitement generating around the city.”
“no vote” sent a clear and negative message to current and prospective business owners. “You can’t answer that definitively,” Malmuth said. “I think in this instance, we were told that this project would be evaluated on its merits and we played by the rules – the rules that we were (Please Continue To Page 8)
Minutes With . . .
state’s action to eliminate redevelopment agencies. City and redevelopment advocacy groups filed (Please Continue To Page 10)
2012 City Council, School Candidate Filings Announced Andrews Gets A Free Ride; District Elections Stifle Voter Participation ■ By GEORGE ECONOMIDES Publisher’s Perspective our years ago, when elecF tions were scheduled for the even-numbered Long Beach City Council seats, the incumbents in Districts 2, 4 and 8 were unopposed. That meant voters in Districts 4 and 8 would wait eight years to cast a vote for Long (Please Continue To Page 18)
Jane Netherton, President And CEO, International City Bank
■ By TIFFANY RIDER Senior Writer ane Netherton, president J and CEO of International City Bank (ICB), is regarded as one of Long Beach’s most established businesspeople and community advocates. Since taking the helm at the bank in 1986, Netherton has continued to build a strong team of professionals to support the management and operations of ICB while prioritizing the safety and soundness of the bank. Netherton began her banking career as a teller trainee with Crocker National Bank in 1967. She never earned a college degree, but took courses in banking and economics while doing a lot of reading and self-
“I am so upset that Alan and Bonnie Lowenthal could have done this when they knew the benefits of redevelopment here. . . . They gave it away.” Jane Netherton, president/CEO of International City Bank and a former chair of the Long Beach Redevelopment Agency, shared her frustration with State Sen. Alan Lowenthal and Assemblymember Bonnie Lowenthal for supporting the elimination of
(Please Continue To Page 16) redevelopment agencies. (Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)
– Frank Colonna, president of the Belmont Shore Business Association and former councilmember and vice mayor of Long Beach
“This will give our complex the ability to have a 45,000-square-foot, loft-style ballroom, which many other competing centers currently have in place. In addition, it will also permit us to attract more concerts that want an intimate environment without views of [the] upper seating. . . . This further additional ‘purposing’ of the arena will be a great help in continuing to attract extra business to our city that previously had to overlook us.” – Steve Goodling, president and CEO of the Long Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, following city council approval to move ahead
etcetera . . . After four years of planning, design work and countless community meetings and studies, the saga of redeveloping the deteriorating SeaPort Marina Hotel at 2nd Street and Pacific Coast Highway came to a screeching halt, leaving the lingering question – is Long Beach business-friendly?
Hong Kong-based Orient Overseas Container Line has agreed in principal to a $4.6 billion, 40-year lease contract with the Port of Long Beach for plans to occupy the 300plus-acre Middle Harbor terminal currently under construction. Port officials said is “the largest deal of its kind for any U.S. seaport.”
Revising a more than 30-yearold land use document known as the South East Area Development and Improvement Plan (SEADIP), which sets guidelines along coastal Southeastern Long Beach, will take one to two years. That’s according to city staff, who are in the process of figuring out a timeline of events and how to fund the undertaking.
Municipalities across California are bracing for a new era of diminished resources as they rapidly disband redevelopment agencies, or RDAs, that were officially dissolved by the state on February 1. The agencies are facing widespread local government layoffs and service cuts.
Local companies are taking advantage of the region’s sunshine, continuing Southern California’s status as a leader in the solar industry. According to the “California Solar Cities 2012” report by the Environment California Research & Policy Center, the City of Los Angeles is number two in solar installations and second in the amount of solar energy generated statewide, following San Diego.
A Special Thank You To The Following Advertisers For Making This Anniversary Salute Possible Advantage CDC Aquarium of the Pacific Assistance League of Long Beach Belmont Shore Business Association Boulevard GMC/Boulevard Cadillac Cal Farmer California State University, Long Beach California State University, Long Beach College of Continuing and Professional Education City of Signal Hill Consolidated Disposal Service
Downtown Long Beach Associates East Anaheim Street Business Alliance ETA Advertising Holthouse, Carlin & VanTrigt LLP International City Bank LB Brokerage Long Beach Airport Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce Long Beach Community Foundation Long Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau
Long Beach Firefighters, Local 372 Long Beach Memorial Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach Community Hospital Long Beach Long Beach Water Department Molina Healthcare Port of Long Beach Queen Mary St. Mary Medical Center Straight Talk UBS/Petrie Financial Group Printed March 13, 2012 • Long Beach Business Journal
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Published on Mar 13, 2012
Published on Mar 13, 2012
The Long Beach Business Journal celebrates 25 years of serving as the "voice of business" in Long Beach, California.