City Nixes Plan to Run Volleyball Leagues

Decision follows presentation at community meeting.

The plug has apparently been pulled on the City of Long Beach’s plan to replace long-standing volleyball leagues, a move coming after a meeting between city officials and the local volleyball community earlier this week. 

Nearly 100 volleyball players and community members showed up at the Long Beach Ice Arena Tuesday for a presentation by the city’s Beach-Park and Recreation departments that proposed to replace the two existing leagues, Evolutions Volleyball and East End Volleyball. The proposal included less expensive registration fees: $450 for teams in the four-player league ($210 less than what Evolutions Volleyball charges); and $550 for teams in the six-player league ($150 less than East End Volleyball’s fee). The city projected $253,000 in revenue for the league’s first year.

Most of people in attendance, however, voiced support for the existing private leagues. Defending his Hamptons-based business of 35 years, Richard Heiles, a co-owner of EEVB, said he was in Florida running volleyball tournaments when Bob Piazza, commissioner of the Long Beach Beach-Park and Recreation Department, called to inform him that the city planned to replace his league. Heiles believed the city was looking to rush a plan through without offering the leagues the opportunity to improve their operations.

“I think that this all kind of stemmed out of miscommunications, and we got all that worked out now,” Heiles told Patch on Thursday. “Competition makes you better, and that’s what has come out of this whole situation.”

The city on Thursday morning posted on its website a brief statement from City Council President Fran Adleson announcing in part that the existing leagues and city will offer a standardization of fees, but the statement offered no further details on the agreement.

“The City would like to thank the league owners for their responsiveness to resident, public safety, and quality of life concerns, and ensuring that the highest level of volleyball will continue to take place on the beach,” the statement reads. City officials did not respond to calls for comment Thursday morning.

Piazza, the moderator of Tuesday’s forum, explained that the idea for a new league was originally put together due to the city’s concerns for how Evolutions and EEVB have operated on city beaches, where they have run their leagues for about 25 years. Among the concerns were alcohol consumption on beaches and littering.

“With growing and prospering, there have been growing pains for the city as well,” Piazza said. “We showed them the presentation, heard the response and I believe that all parties walked away from this experience with a feeling that a better product would be offered for all.”

Volleyball players and Long Beach residents Chris Sullivan and Vinny Leis said they designed the layout for the city-run league after they were approached by officials to create something to better suit the city, the volleyball players and residents. Their plan also called to reduce the size of the program from a 60-net system to a 40-net system between Edwards and Long Beach Boulevards, an area further removed from residences.

“We came up with a solution for the city’s complaints,” Sullivan said at the meeting. “When we thought about it, we were putting together ideas for how to better the league.”

Although Sullivan and Leis posed solutions to many of the city’s concerns with the leagues, a majority of the audience seemed to reject their plan and questioned the city’s intentions. Some suggested that it was moved by the new administration to generate revenue during a declared fiscal crisis. But Piazza denied that it was a politically backed move. 

Candygram for Mongo March 17, 2012 at 11:57 AM
Y U NO explain your premises more clearly
theLBvoiceofreason March 17, 2012 at 12:15 PM
Hello in speaking with a few friends last night I was told that the City has a fee structure for the use of each section of the beach. The fees start at $1,500.00 and go up from there. So if the Volleyball league uses 3 stretches of beach the price for its use would be $4,500.00 per day. I figure that would be about $10.00 per person per night I don't think that a bad number. The same would go for the surf camps . They use 1 beach so they should be charged $1,500.00 per day or $7,500.00 per week its cost breakdown would be about $15.00-20.00 per kid/adult per day for the camps. For too many years our Elected officials made BAD DEALS with contractors /Vendors now it is time for the CITY to get a FAIR price for use of our beautiful beaches..
Derek V March 17, 2012 at 12:16 PM
Maybe the City should take over and control the playing of Frisbse and catch-ball etc. It's way too dangerous to allow anyone to throw around objects without City supervision right? Cha-ching.
Lloyd March 17, 2012 at 01:30 PM
Some of youse want to squeeze out every dollar you caan from kids and athletes who share the beaches with us. You are all jealous that these enterprises are making money and profit and you want a big slice of it. There is a limit of how much these businesses will fork over before they abandon the City altogether and go elsewhere like Quiksilver has. The City need only cut out all its corruption and wasteful spending so it wouldnt have to pick on legitimate private enterprises to make up for the budget deficit. And who are you to decide what a "good number" is for each camper and volleyball player to pay per day? Maybe the West End bars are making too much money too, and the City should make them fork over a big share of that by raising their property taxes based on the size of their income, not the size of their property. And $10 per beer would be a goid number for patrons to pay?
Kevin Martinsen March 17, 2012 at 01:33 PM
Good points Anonymous, I have been working on a plan to start the first ever Long Beach Militia. After we stabilize the bridge's we are going to move our troops out east and start taking over the beach's from Jones inlet through Montauk. I have a plan on taking over the NJ beach's but that may take a year. Once we have all the beach's east of here under our control will be able to charge more. I'm thinking of calling it the USRB (United Socialist Republic of Beaches) What do you think?
The real bear March 17, 2012 at 01:40 PM
I agree with lbvoice of reason. There is nothing wrong with getting a fair price for the use of our beaches. However just raise the fees. No need to place a relative in a useless made up job
anonymous March 17, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Now that the city has vowed to be more "transparent" why don't they publish give us the numbers of their actual cost to have the leagues use the beach. How many 911 calls did they respond to last year for injured players? How many hours of OT were required to service the beach specifically because of any league related activities? If they could provide those numbers then it would be reasonable to expect the fees paid to the city by the league to cover those. Should the city "profit" from the league? I don't think they should...but if they felt compelled to charge an additional five to ten percent above cost to cover any "unexpected" items then I think that may be something all sides could live with. I suspect, however, that being transparent on city costs will expose the system that has created the current fiscal crisis. For example...paying people OT to stand around and do nothing. I will also stand by my original arguments... This city should has enough issues to worry about that it shouldn't be looking for make work jobs. And it's wrong to co-opt a private business just because it thinks it can make the city money.
Lloyd March 17, 2012 at 02:57 PM
Leave the volleyball players alone. Set up a semi autonomous authoruty run by Mike Fagen and Erect toll booths on the Long Beach Blvd Bridge. Charge $2 each way like in Atlantic Beach which should cover Fagen's salary and that of his friends and family. Any shortages will be covered by a City bailout... floating bonds and raising taxes Ya gotta be creative to be a Long Beach.politician..
Smiley Jo Hansen March 17, 2012 at 03:56 PM
Mike Fagen, Mike Fagen, Mike Fagen! Can we all just get off the subject of this guy. Great... Kathleen Rice's Office has brought charges against him, once again great. Whether he gets convicted or not, in my opinion who cares. Let's move on the press will keep us informed on him. Where this discussion all started was the City looking to run the Volleyball Leagues. Could they do better, YES! League owners have let things go by the way side for years, maybe this was a wake up call to them to get their sh*t together. Let's all take a step back and see what's going to happen. Will they improve their equipment? Have staff actually on hand to help people out or will it just be the same old woman walking up and down the nets not worrying about how the games going but to make aware to everyone where the after party is. Why the stress where the party is afterwards? Is one owner getting kick backs from the establishments he pushes his leagues too? While the other fills his own establishment to benefit himself? I say good for the owner who has an establishment in town and benefits from it. But how bout the other owner who takes the money and runs back over the bridge. Will the poles come down to provide access for emergency vehicles? Will the league owners take the responsibility into their own hands to police the beach once everyone has left to clean up the mess everyone left behind. Only time will tell if the leopard has finally changed his spots.
delete me March 17, 2012 at 06:43 PM
We'll get off the subject when he gets out of office.
Richard Boodman March 17, 2012 at 08:48 PM
@awesome et al.............. By that time your school taxes will have priced you out of your home and off the beach. While you and the others wring your hands over who can run the volleyball tournaments best, you have turned your backs on the most important issue facing the people of Long Beach, skyrocketing school costs. 170 comments on the two volleyball articles vs 17 comments on a 122 million dollar school budget proposal? Unless you are a bunch of trust fund babies, may I suggest you wake up and get your priorities straight.
delete me March 17, 2012 at 09:16 PM
Priorities? I'd say getting someone out of office who steals, lies and crosses the line with females is more of a priority than paying attention to a school budget of which I know nothing about. It's another language. Plenty of people here revolve a big part of their lives around volleyball, surfing, whatever. We can't all be on your page, Mr Boodman.
Richard Boodman March 17, 2012 at 09:30 PM
It's not me who is drinking the Cool Aid! Take an anger management course, Mr. Awesome. Get a grip on yourself, Mr Awesome, and try entering the real world by attending the next school budget hearing. Bring your volleyball as a pacifier. By the way, did you ever hear of "innocent until proven guilty?." It's the American way. Will someone stick a fork in this angry bird...... he's done!
Lloyd March 18, 2012 at 12:17 PM
Boodman...I commented a few times on the School budget article comparing the supt's salary to the salary of the NYC Schools Chancellor, and how the taxpayers are burdened by the District's bloated salaries, benefits, and pensions they are paying out of their diminishing revenue and overall increased expenditures. How much more can the average homeowner take? I used the example of my house in Plainedge which is severely overtaxed by the school budget . I also recommended that its time to merge all these tax poor school districts into ONE countywide, like in NYC. Too much administrative duplication and waste with over 50 school districts in the County. And we all care about the school budget as well as the volleyball league situation, and Mike Fagens disrespect for his political position. We are very capable of multi-posting and multi-tasking, thank you.
Eddie March 18, 2012 at 02:00 PM
. Long Beach is unique in that only 20% of its residents ever see property tax bills. The rest are tenants. They see rent increases and think greedy landlords get the money. This school district has to be reeled in. Tax and spending increases are obscene in this economic environment. Consolidating districts isn't the answer; it destroys local control. Spending cuts, and the elimination of State and Federal mandates are only hope. Electing and appointing smart people is another. Millions are being spent stupidly. Security guards, new elevators that some "think" are required by ADA but are not, fake turf for fields, lifetime gas for the Superintendent's family. You can go on and on. When a young person starting out is confronted with a $1,200 studio apartment, he can thank taxes for $600 of that rent bill. Maybe he should consider voting these incompetent, bungling corrupt boobs out of their offices. Taking a day out from volleyball to have a say in how $7,200 of his money is spent each year wouldn't be a bad investment.
delete me March 18, 2012 at 02:47 PM
I'll actually take you up on that, Boodman. Next school meeting I'll make all efforts to attend.
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 07:33 PM
and why should they not make a profit ,it was there idea and hard work that made it successful , so just let the gov of LB take it ,what are they the gestapo
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 07:39 PM
why not let the rec run a separate league ? they do it with lacrosse ,let the people chose
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 08:11 PM
anonymous just for the record ,and everyone that keeps the subject of quiksilver not coming back .this is the FACT .QUIKSILVER IS 500 MILLION IN DEBT ,They did not pass on us ,they are not doing a contest anywhere on the east coast ,nothing to do with our city just has to do with finances ,
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 08:12 PM
where is Quik going ? you know something we don't ?
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 08:15 PM
what does your friend Tagney have to say about it ?
Lloyd March 18, 2012 at 08:17 PM
If you think Long Beach voters will ever be capable of "electing and appointing smart people and voting incompetent, bungling corrupt boobs out of their offices", you are dreaming and living in Fantasyland. In this town, the more money someone is responsible for the stupider and greedier he or she gets. Im fairly new in town, but from what you guys write here, this crap has been going in for ages. Wanna stop it? Get rid of local control and opt for a county wide school district. Could it get any worse?
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 08:23 PM
you might want to start with all the illegal rentals pouring students into our class rooms ,lets start with a $2500 dollar fine to every illegal apt ,they are making at least 12,000 a year on a rentals ,let them file to become legal with a $1000 file fee to see if they can come to ALL codes ,that might save the city huge $ in garbage and sewer fees,and while we are at it start enforcing sanitation fines ,the garbage that flows down our streets into sewers and makes our city look like crao should be stopped ,every pail should be covered and white kitchen bags that seagulls tear threw should be gone
Longbeacher March 18, 2012 at 08:28 PM
Rich ,i know you are a guy that really wants whats the best for the city ,you have a passion for the city ,but i cant for the life of me see how you could think this guy Fagen is not part of the problem .he was charged with breaking the law by one of his own democrats ,please don't defend this guy ,u will lose all credibility
Lloyd March 18, 2012 at 08:32 PM
You want to wind up lije Malverne Schools, paying its Supt. $600,000? Or Syosset paying its Supt.$300K salary? Yeah. Local control is a cost saver.
Lloyd March 18, 2012 at 08:40 PM
Correction on the above. Its the Commack S D, paying former Supt. Hunerford an annual pension of over $300,000. I wonder what their taxes are?
Eddie March 19, 2012 at 01:46 PM
A small group of large property owners are putting together a group to rally a vote down of this absurd budget spending increase. At least a dozen guys have pledged upwards of $10,000 each in funding the movement. With outside help that has been promised, let's hope they are effective. Then they can move on to ousting the board that's responsible for this drunken tax-and-spend orgy.
calvin March 19, 2012 at 03:33 PM
Awesome - school taxes account for almost 70% of your taxes so take a little time to learn about your school budget. Did Mr Fagen not buy you dinner and a drink first? or take you to a movie. Maybe you had to pay for the date? He is undefendable but this sounds a little personal and very bitter.
delete me March 19, 2012 at 03:57 PM
Calvin, you are disgusting!
Lloyd March 19, 2012 at 11:57 PM
So they can elect another group of greedy, self-Serving lackeys who kiss the ass of the Supt. Same crap. Different faces. They all get that way once they get a little power and control of someone else's money.


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