Scrooge Comes to Long Beach (and we need a bailout)

The Long Beach Herald has a whopper of a story before the holiday season.  It seems Scrooge has come to Long Beach, and without emergency action, Long Beach can’t make payroll on December 23rd.  Meaning that, Long Beach’s workers won’t get paid two days before Christmas.

Of course, in the leaked menu obtained by the Herald, City Manager Theofan and the comptroller are frantically working to borrow money – over $1 to cover the shortfall.  An emergency City Council meeting will be held on November 30th to approve the Long Beach “bailout.”

It’s interesting that for month’s we’ve heard about the fiscal health of Long Beach, yet when push comes to shove, we can’t pay our bills and seemingly have known we wouldn’t be able to for as many months.

City Manger Theofan explained that it was all Irene’s fault because of the overtime the City racked up, and FEMA hasn’t paid up yet.  How is this a surprise and why weren’t residents aware of this earlier.

The other whopper to come out of this memo is that while resigning acting police commissioner Sofield Senior will not be getting a golden parachute.  But his accumulated sick and vacation time add up to 500k.  And he wants it within 60 days.  And here I am getting excited about my 10 vacation days a year that are use or lose…

The plan the City Manager has floated is to borrow $1.5 million to cover the payroll shortfall of $1.4 million (are we already assuming the estimated shortfall is larger than $1.3 million?).  If my math is right, the City only has $100,000 to pay the $1.3 million bill.  Much later after all the obfuscation about Irene, the crux of the matter comes up, and that’s these unbudgeted payouts.  The memo says these payments total to a monstrous $1.4 million for the three employees, making any Irene-incurred overtime seem like just a drop in the bucket.


Read the article for the rest of the info.  It’s great. 

Please read the terms of service before you comment.


6 thoughts on “Scrooge Comes to Long Beach (and we need a bailout)”

  1. What exactly is the $1.3m for? How can that be our normal payroll? Anyone know if it’s weekly or biweekly? Either way, even if it includes Sofields cool half mil… It seems astronomically high!!!

  2. Perhaps it is time to smarten up and eliminate unused accrued sick leave and vacation days from retirement packages. This time doesn’t roll over in the private sector, so why should it be an entitlement in the public arena? Any new contracts should stipulate that previous employees will only have the time coming to them at the signing of the contract and no more will be added. New employees will not have any unused time rolled over. If they don’t use it, they lose it.

  3. Former Coalition city council member Jimmy H. is busy posting “to do” lists to hold the new dem leadership accountable for their “promises” before they even get started. What a joke! He better have his asterisk stamp ready to footnote his list with details of the disastrous state of affairs that they will be left with due to just about a decade of the Coalition’s failures. Any way he wishes to spin it the Coalition leaves in utter disgrace. They leave the city on the verge of bankruptcy. And, as for the new dem leadership, they better kick Zapson, Kohut and Nigro to the curb if they want to climb out of the mess that the Coalition is leaving as their legacy. My guess is that Mandell and Adelson will have to take charge. Fagin is at risk and Torres is out of his element. Good luck! You will need it.

  4. The only person who is unfit for duty is Mr. Theofan. This was clear to some from the outset. For others it will take the benefit of time to look back and to see the truth in retrospect. The Coalition positioned an incompetent, soulless political hack to do their bidding as city manager. He has a law degree and enough of an ability to speak in legalese to fool the average person into thinking that he knew what he was doing. In other words he conned the public. He did not live in Long Beach. During the early years of his appointment he used a shell address in LB to justify residency, but Long Beach was not his domicile, as was required by law. The coalition knew this and aided and abetted him in this blatant lie. In other words they lied to the public in their first year in power in order to keep their puppet in place. This was just the beginning of what will become known as a reign of dishonesty and corruption. Further down the road the coalition council leadership changed the law to permit a city manager to live elsehwere, once they realized that they could no longer coverup his true residency any longer. More and more should come out in the months and years to come about how bad this group was for Long Beach. Sadly, they became what they promised to replace. They fooled us all. In ten years or sooner will be be telling the same old story about Mandel, Adelson, Torres as we are now discovering about Hennessey, Sofield, Goodman and the Cammarata clan before them? It is really not about Coalition or Dems. It is about a sick culture in Long Beach that has developed for decades and decades with replaceable parts. The citizens have become like a legion of Charlie Browns just waiting for Lucy to lift the football just as we are about to kick it, so that we land flat on our asses…again and again. We keep the faith that it will be different next time. But, it never is.

Comments are closed.