A funny thing happened on the way to the …. Welcome to my candidates forum notes. It’s a big mess. I somehow typed everything could on my phone. There are mistakes. I didn’t get clear answers for what the candidates actually said because they were talking too faast, so please take this all for what it is. I’ll get to posting a cleaner version soon. I know it’s not the best source of information on the upcoming election, but as Candidate Runnie Myles said during the debate: “Did they take a page from Seabythecity?” In other words, a lot of the questions that were asked tonight were similar to the ones I sent to all the candidates. There is another debate at the end of October. I’ll post information about that one soon. I believe it’s October 30th.
[This is all in reverse order. Start from the bottom and scroll up. Don’t blame me if you get dizzy]
Chris quoted Ronald Reagan. said the mess was created by the two who didn’t show up.
Joey. Wants more people to show up, to be more active with LB. He is very proud to be from here.
Bill. Said he will bring real reform if you vote for his party.
Allison. Is running because of transportation and wanted to force the conversation. Mobility rights and accessibility. Was not being heard, so she ran. She has experience advocating for people. Wants us to all have a voice at cityHall .
John. “People, not politics” he says he takes that to heart. Wants Candidates to think in the best interest of the people.
Leah. Said she is a Democrat, running on Republican line. She didn’t want to run with incumbents. She wants governing majority so wants you to vote for her party. We are all here because we want LB to be better.
Runnie. He mentioned how he was on the other line. It helped him prepare for where he is now. He reminds us to write his name. I like this guy.
8:44pm What is your vision for long beach in ten years?
Runnie wants LB governed for residents by residents. smart, green, progressive development. He mentioned seabythecity!! Leah is worried about hurricanes and storm protection. Used the term climate refuge, which means if we have another Sandy there will be less money. John likes transit oriented development. It’s the rage right now. We have bayfront that needs something done. Large opportunity there. We need attractive downtown. To help businesses. Allison wants a mayor. Wants us to not be segregated. Wants LB to be destination for walking and biking. She mentions seabythecity! Talks about cute downtowns. Bill talks about different places he lived in. Said LB is the greatest, but there is a shadow with taxes and current gov. We need to get it under control for quality of life. Joey mentioned downtown. wants more environmental protection. Marine labs to bring jobs. Make LB safer. Boardwalk is getting crowded. Chris wants to clean LB up. Power washing the sidewalks. Better maintenance. Worried about middle class being priced out.
8:35pm How do you deal with the Haberman and possible iStar lawsuit?
Joey said we cannot put this burden on our children. They won’t be able to live here. Would fight for good contacts. Bill said we would have to declare bankruptcy if we are faced with Istar lawsuit. He is fighting it. As far as Haberman, he wants city to reach out. Allison said any amount will hurt if we get these lawsuits. We can’t kick it down the road. Now it’s kicking us in the face. Bendo thinks we need to somehow settle with Haberman. We can talk it out. Istar he says we should fight. Leah said city gave istar ok to get tax break and it’s going to hurt us. She said she is fighting in a lawsuit. We can’t get slammed with these lawsuits. Runnie said we have to stop bad legislation based in bad information. You need to do research on every pilot and how it will effect us. Chris thinks we can work with Haberman. Says he is fighting with lawsuit. Joey said he doesn’t want profits over our planet. John complis saying how much he fought against istar.
8:25pm Transparency. What steps would you take?
Chris wants a real ethics committee. Wants to use city website more to get info out. Joey agrees with ethics committee. said there is a lot of special interests right now. Bill said he met with 1000 people and only one liked what was currently happening. Allison said she wants to restructure committees so we can see what city council members are working on. She wants open data. A website that will show everything. Permits, contracts, etc. Other cities have this. John is talking about contract process. Also holding a coffee with council meeting so they can talk to resident directly. Also redo the FOIL process. Also being ethics committee back. Leah wants ethics committee that meets more often. Also wants to redo FOIL process. Everything should be online. Runnie likes to certify payroll so we can all see what’s happening. Wants job specs online.
8:17pm How to solve parking issues.
Runnie is talking about resident parking with permits. Chris wants to put some stripes to create more spots. Joey wants to make riding bikes safer. Bill says parking causes a lot of anger. People fighting for spots. Allison says she studied parking. We need smart parking management. We need to get people to leave the car home because the bus is sexy. John said angled parking, stripes, double parking garage at LIRR. Resident permits. Leah says striping will add 1000 spots. She mentions the new difficulty with lifted houses on the west end with curb cuts. Allison says striping can’t work because the spots would get larger based on Current laws.
8:09pm. A LB Hospital question.
Leah is for a hospital. She mentions jobs and revenue and also the care that is missing. Runnie is talking about how we lost all that fema money. We should have had advocates in the city fighting for it. Chris says we need a hospital because of the drawbridge. Joey wants us to have a hospital back. He will work to bring it back. Bill says having a hospital is a quality of life issue and current admin didn’t push for it. Allison says she needs a hospital stronger than what we had before. We lost a lot of jobs and that effected park Ave and the stores. John said ship sailed, but we need specialty medical campus to bring jobs back.
8:01pm Question about lowering taxes.
John said we need to increase revenue. One way is RE transfer tax. It’s only people coming into town to buy houses. Leah mentions increasing revenue by one percent to cover expenses. Runnie says you can legislate zoning to bring revenues to help. Like bringing jobs, medical jobs etc. Chris is talking about how spending is out of hand. Joey wants to maintain quality of life which means keeping taxes low. We should think outside the box to bring in revenue. Bill said the city needs a forensic audit of the books. Mentioned our fiscal stress. Promises to freeze taxes for two years. Allison wants to talk about raising revenue, but not for patronage jobs. She wants to be transparent. Wants to look at housing policy to open downtown for mixed use development. It will take creative solutions.
7:54pm Challenges of our water situation. (Drinking, sewage, etc.)
Allison said she is so resourceful and would do all the research to figure it out. John mentions the sewer outflow pipe getting not in the channel. we have old pipes. Some of them are clay. They need to be updated. Leah said we need to merge resources especially for the outflow pipe. Need to bring the matches back. We can’t lose our natural environment that protects us. Runnie said we need to hire the right people to get the job done. Reflects whats being said. Chris is talking about the Lloyd aquifer fighting for it. He said pipes cost money to fix. Joey is talking about having a study done to recycle our water to the aquifer to replenish it. Bill talks about our brown water. He wants to being a new compressive plan to fix this.
7:53pm They are talking about whether or not candidates can mention their websites. In the meantime, visit seabythecity.com
7:45pm Next question: If elected, what are your top three changes?
Bill mentioned taxes, overdeveloped. Allison mentioned vision zero, restoring trust. Said don’t vote for party boss. John said we need to reevaluate city finances. Said city is living on credit card. He wants to look at contracts. He also wants term limits for council to keep fresh ideas coming in. Leah said freeze taxed. Work more efficiently. Protect water source. Runnie said affordability, flooding issues. Chris said holding line on taxes, good government. Stop overdevelopment and bring in ethics. Joey quality of service, life and environment. Doesn’t want taxed raised. He is worried about the water supply.
7:36pm Next question is on development and maintaining quality of life.
Joey is saying you have to look at who is on the zoning board first. He doesn’t want resources to be stretched. Bill is saying overdevelopment is why he is running. Because of the lawsuits. He believes variances should only be given if there is hardship. Allison what’s smart development. Build on what we have. She wants to take RE interests outside of city hall. Focus needs to move from tourism to local shops. John also talks smart development. Mentions transient oriented development near the LIRR and Kennedy Plaza. Parking needs to be fixed. Leah is saying as a RE Broker she sees whats going on. Doesn’t want overdevelopment. Is worried about storm water, flooding, empty stores. Runnie wants to make city affordable for older and younger people. Ideas that will benefit residents that will bring jobs. Chris mentioned the lawsuit he is on against Istar. He wants the city to rebook at comprehensive plan. Doesn’t want tall buildings ok on park or the bay.
7:28pm. First question is regarding street safety.
Chris talked about more tickets being handed out. Joey mentioned how the city for grants to fix this and they haven’t. Bill Haas is talking about how crowded LB got and current admin is ignoring issue. Wants more striping, resident parking. Allison talks about Bicycle education and mobility rights. Wants vision zero for long beach. John Bendo mentions the complete streets we passed, but city never compiled to the standard. We need dedicated bike lanes, curb bump outs. Leah talks about her experience riding a bike. Said she will bring 1000 more parking spots. Runnie says we need enforcement, legislation and communication with residents on what the changes are.
(This is streaming on LB Civic candidates forum on Facebook.)
7:24pm Runnie is running for the community. Maintaining quality of life.
7:23pm Leah brings up the discolored water we drink, environment. All that she is involved with.
7:21pm John Bendo making it clear he is an independent running on the Democratic line. In other words, don’t place him with the two no-shows.
7:20pm Allison touts her background with her non-profit long island Streets
7:19pm Joey talked about the environment and running for the community.
7:18pm Chris introduced himself. I missed what he said because I dropped my phone.
7:16pm introductions are underway.
7:15pm it starts. Looks like every candidate in here, except Scott Mandel and Chumi Diamond.
7:00pm I’ll try to update this as much as I can. Thanks
City Council Candidates Forum at Temple Israel, Long Beach, NY. Monday, October 16th.