Category Archives: Opinions

Reader Mailbag: “My love for Long Beach is dying out.” [hey, I still have hope]

I received the following from a former Long Beach resident who changed plans on moving back due to the current nature of our city:

“I am planning on purchasing a home this Fall… and I was planning on coming back to Long Beach…. I have to be honest, with the raise in taxes, politicians lining their pockets with that tax money, and the whole upheaval of the government officials for Long Beach, I will no longer be purchasing that home in Long Beach! LB would be better off going under the town of Hempstead! My love for Long Beach is dying out….. Can you fix that?   – Patty

This feeds into my fear how Long Beach is on the path of losing full-time residents in exchange for summer renters [see what’s happening in Montauk]. Despite my constant ‘bad news’ posts, I still believe this City by the Sea is one of the best places to live in this area. We have the beach, the boardwalk, an ever growing crop of amazing food places popping up, plus our amazing community. Yes, times are tough, but we are going to get past all this. 2019 just cannot come soon enough…..

New Transportation Map was quietly updated on Monday [scratching my head as I write this]

The Open Air Trolley. The other day I blogged about the route confusion. I’m still confused by what’s going on here. SEE MY POST: PSA: THE OPEN AIR TROLLEY ROUTE IS NOT WHAT YOU THINK

Long Beach just cannot get their s*** together. I’m glad we have Allison of Long Beach Streets because she is really on top of this. The following was sent by Allison to City Council earlier this week:

“The new map that quietly replaced the old map on Monday morning shows no Shoppers Special. To be clear here, the Summer Trolley and the Shoppers Special routes have been cancelled, with no notice on the city website or to residents who have been stranded curbside. The West End loop on weekends is free for daily / seasonal beach pass holders – despite the West End beaches being occupied by the ACOE pumping sand. 

And none of you knew about this? Come on now. 

This City Council approved a budget that double the size of the DOT while cutting bus services in half. Will you ever hold the Deputy City Manager / Head of Transit Michael Robinson accountable?    – Allison Blanchette of Long Island Streets. “

I knew it! [Open Air Trolley]

Here is an update to my last post:  PSA: THE OPEN AIR TROLLEY ROUTE IS NOT WHAT YOU THINK

It’s crazy how long I’ve been blogging trolley problems. If the new route looped Maple Blvd/Park to Nevada/Beech, I would totally be fine with that. Just make it a business route. You hop on. You hop off.  Make it reliable and call it a day. Advertise at the LIRR and you’ll get some of the train folks to spend money in the West End. Isn’t that the ultimate goal here?   [I WISH I got paid for this…… ]  

PSA: The Open Air Trolley route is not what you think

Both days last weekend my family, out of town friends and I waited in the East End for the open air trolley. We had suitcases full of money, eager to spend it all in the West End. All of it. Like billions of dollars pouring out of our suitcases. The trolley never came. We were sad.

Both of those days I kept asking my LB friends on facebook for  trolley updates, if they saw it, etc. All the info was confusing – none  coincided with the two trolley routes I found on the official Long Beach website, including one that hasn’t been updated since 2014 [link].

Well today it’s all been figured out.  Allison of Long Island Streets managed to find the trolley, took it for a ride and confirmed everything: The Trolley is only looping between the bus station on Park to Nevada in the West End.  So there you go. If you live in the East End, no trolley for you. No spending those East End suitcases full of money at those West End restaurants and stores. 

Residents are NOT happy about the next ‘rumored’ City Manager. This city is going to the shits. [OPINION]

July 3rd Rally at City Hall. Photo by me.

There is a rumor about the next City Manager and residents are pissed. Just go on Long Beach social media and you’ll see what I’m talking about…. I am not going to say who this rumored-person is, but it’s not the independent City Manger residents rallied for last week. I am so f***ing disappointment by the politically connected hacks running this city.

We have questionable separation payouts with two bonds to cover them, employees who got full time wages, but were believed to be part time. WTF is happening here? And how many times can iStar sue us? It’s two lawsuits so far. Will they go for a hat trick? Nobody is even talking about the other lawsuits our city got us into. Haberman, anyone?

City Councilmen John Bendo said at the rally last week, some folks are using this city as a personal piggy bank. This is very alarming. We have broken benches on the boardwalk that look like shit. Do you think we have money to fix them? No. Shitty roads all over Long Beach. The City of Long Beach looks like absolute shit, but as long as the incompetent friends and families of those in power get on the payroll, things should be ok, right?

“We welcome the FBI because everyone seems to be doing a cover-up.”  – County legislator Denise Ford at the Rally last Tuesday, July 3rd.

She is absolutely right. Call the FBI because the Nassau DA and NYS Comptroller aren’t going to do anything. They are all connected.  This city is so f***ed the way it’s being run, and that includes the MAJOR mess that Jack Schnirman left us. All those mailers we got in 2017 telling us how great our city finances were was a complete lie. Anissa Moore and John Bendo are the only people who actually care about what’s going on around here.  Trust me when I say that. And we will remember this next election. I plan on organizing with all social media groups to change the powers that be. It’s going to work.

For those who missed the rally, I posted a video of it on youtube: Rally at Long Beach, NY City Hall – July 3rd, 2018

FILED UNDER: OPINIONS & RUMORS.

In blog news: I received a ton of email the past 2 months. I’ll get back to you! The current state of affairs in Long Beach has not been fun at all, so this blog just makes me depressed posting these types of articles.

July 3rd Rally at City Hall. Photo by me.

 

 

Our Gutsy Zoning Board made the right decision. Foundation permit for the superblock is now expired.

Kudos to the Long Beach Zoning Board for having the guts to deny iStar Financial an extension, rendering their superblock foundation permit invalid. iStar recently tried to pull a fast one by pretending work was underway the other day, but it was a little too late (sorry, pals.) Now work has stopped and iStar plans on following through with their lawsuit for $100 million against our city.

In 2014 at The Park Sports bar & Grill (now called The Junction) residents were told by executive vice president of iStar Karl Frey how the project was shovel ready, only to find out a year later about the tax abatement request of $120 million for 20 years. I personally know many residents who claim they were lied to and changed their mind on development once they heard about the tax abatement. iStar is also claiming how the Nassau IDA would have given them the abatement if Long Beach wrote a letter of support. If that’s an official claim, then they must prove that in court. Who led them on? Who in the Nassau IDA told them they were waiting for our blessing?

The bottom line is this: iStar should have been honest upfront with us residents and told us from the beginning how they were seeking the tax breaks. It’s their fault that we’re in this situation and now we have to pay for their greediness.

In the meantime, iStar shareholders should sell their stock. Who would want to own a greedy company that’s in the business of destroying communities? Especially a community that was hit hard with Superstorm Sandy and still trying to get back to normal.  

Superblock movement ahead of ZBA iStar variance vote

Several readers have been sending me photos and tidbits regarding the recent movement that has been happening on the Superblock. The photo posted above which was taken today shows a tremendous pile driver.

A reader named Jim tells me: “Guess they [iStar] are trying to get stuff in before their 1 year (that lasted 3 years) variance expires and before the upcoming meeting. “

It certainly sounds like it. The ZBA will vote on the variance this Thursday which will determine if the iStar building permit expired. iStar are going to do their best to show us how they already started construction. Here is another example of iStar trying to build their case, but really being nothing, but the assholes they really are. Just recently iStar served Long Beach with a $100 million dollar lawsuit because they claim our city has not supported their tax break request. I have posted the entire summons here [link].

Developing…….

 

iStar files $100m lawsuit against Long Beach [What a bunch of (censored)]

DO NOT CONTINUE READING IF YOU DON’T LIKE PROFANITY

The History of all this: Liar liar pants on fire Karl Frey, Executive Vice President of iStar Financial lied to us Long Beach residents back in 2014 when he sold many of us on the iStar project by never mentioning their plan to seek a tax abatement.  At The Park,  Liar liar Pants on fire Karl Frey told us the project was shovel ready with funds that were readily available.

What happened next had us residents furious.

After getting approval to build by convincing us they needed to add a few extra stories to make the project financially feasibly, iStar never broke ground. They project remained silent until it came out that they were seeking $127 million in tax breaks from the Nassau County IDA.  That was rejected, so iStar tried again for $109 million. That was also rejected and rightfully so. Why would Nassau County IDA give iStar tax breaks on ultra rare waterfront property smack in the middle of a beach community that is walking distance to the LIRR?

So where are we today?

“It is with a great deal of reluctance that iStar filed this suit today,” said Karl Frey, iStar’s executive vice president. “For nearly a decade, we’ve worked closely with the city of Long Beach to create a development plan that would be both economically viable and provide extraordinary benefits to the city and its residents.” [NEWSDAY]

Yep. The Long Beach woes continue…. iStar Financial is suing us for $100 million for not publicly supporting their IDA request (That is complete bullshit. Below is a photo of City Councilman Anthony Eramo publicly speaking in favor of the project). IStar Financial has to be one of the dumbest fucking assbent over backwards companies out there. The Residents will respond to this. Meanwhile, the cost of construction keeps going up uP UP.  Honest, Karl Frey, you are a fucking stupid and mean asshole. If I were an iStar shareholder, I would be pissed.

NEWSDAY: Developers file $100M suit against Long Beach over Superblock

LB HERALD: iStar files $100M lawsuit against Long Beach

Photo by Take Back Long Beach 11561 group on Facebook

Meet Sam Pinto, Candidate for Long Beach School Board Trustee

I was asked to share the following for Sam Pinto, candidate for the Long Beach School Board Trustee. Election day is today. Go out there and vote if you haven’t yet!

Neighbor,

Today is a critical day in the City of Long Beach as we cast our votes for the budget and School Board Trustees. I wanted to reach out & ask you to cast your vote for me! Sam Pinto 1C

The school system is a critical part of our community, and it’s taxes have the largest impact on our cost of living. Long Beach is facing many challenges as of late and I believe the time is now to shift the status quo. These times of political “clubhouse” and “special interests” superseding the needs of its residents must come to a full stop. Sadly this also holds true for OUR school district.

First & foremost, I am running for the children in OUR community. The school system is most important foundation for their success.

There is currently not one parent of young children serving on our board. That perspective is critical to help balance the vision and direction of the district. I have 3 young children and along with many other parents, I want to make sure that they are given the tools to be successful.

I have a vested interest in their future as both a parent and a taxpayer, making sure that our hard earned tax dollars go to their success and not special interests.

Children are multidimensional they need a balance of structured learning and free play. This will help them learn responsibility and coping skills. They are naturally inquisitive learners, and we need to promote critical thinking and preparation for life’s challenges. There are better ways to gauge achievement than high risk standardized tests. I believe in teaching towards the whole child, not tests. We need to continue to encourage social and emotional growth. In older grades, we need to offer additional pathways, regardless of specific needs and special abilities, this includes academic programs and vocational skills that prepare for their successful futures.

Safety, Safety, Safety.
Safety always comes first. As a dedicated first responder, I know the importance of that. My experience will help cultivate an environment where our children, staff and family’s feel safe at school. The topics of bullying, mental health, opioid crisis or acts of violence are real concerns. My focus on safety will promote real programs and measures to keep everyone safe.

My experience in public service as a civic leader, library trustee and community advocate will help ensure that our district will continue to honest and financially responsible. I have stood alongside fellow residents as we fought against overdevelopment, unfair tax breaks and medical services on the barriar island. Our school district is key stakeholder in our community, and I look forward to continue advocating from that position as well.

I thank you for your support and vote.
Click here to look up your voting location- https://nb.findmypollplace.com/longbeachcsd/AmIRegistered