Illegal Housing, Parking Meters Headline 'Listens' Meeting

City holds second neighborhood forum for residents to voice their concerns.

Illegal housing and parking meters were a few of the issues that residents voiced concerns about at Long Beach Listens, a city-led community meeting scheduled for different neighborhoods each month, at St. Mary of the Isle Church in the East End on Wednesday.

Resident Kathleen O’Leary suggested to City Manager Jack Schnirman and City Council members in attendance that they address illegal housing. She explained to residents what makes a property illegal, as well as the proper process to report landlords who rent homes illegally.

“I would like to see the attitude change for illegal housing and I would like to see the laws changed to enable the building department to move these cases along quickly,” O’Leary said.

Councilman Scott Mandel agreed and encouraged residents to report any suspicious activity to the Long Beach Police Department.  

“That is something that shouldn't be tolerated,” Mandel said. “If we know there is an illegal housing entity, we can’t just come in and shut it down, but bringing this to the building department’s attention is a crucial step.”

Police Commissioner Michael Tangney told residents the police department is investigating a number of properties in the city and warned those who refuse to follow the law. “If your planning on doing illegal housing, don’t; if you have it, correct it; and if you know someone that’s doing it, let us know,” Tangney said.

Meanwhile, other residents suggested installing parking meters in the city’s business district and even on residential streets to help generate revenue. Last May, city official took out a proposal in the 2011-12 budget to install parking meters in Long Beach, which was projected to generate about $450,000 in revenue.

Schnirman, while intrigued by the idea for parking meters, still held reservations about it, suggesting the city council seek out additional feedback from the community. “It is something that we would be looking to do after we hear more of a variety of perspectives,” he said.

Schnirman set the tone of Wednesday’s meeting by explaining the importance of a balanced budget, currently in a projected $10.2 million deficit. “What happens if we don't close our deficit is really not an option,” Schnirman said.

“If we don’t close it then we could be downgraded again,” the city manager continued, referring to when Moody’s Investors Service downgraded the city’s bond rating in December.

Other issues raised at the meeting:

  • The council explained that although the city was approved to receive roughly $1.1 million in FEMA relief fund, following the damage caused by Hurricane Irene last August, they don't expect to see the reimbursement money until the end of the fiscal year.
  • Jim LaCarrubba, the new public works commissioner, assured residents that concrete slabs left behind from the Decobike project in residential neighborhoods would be removed and refurbished as soon as possible.
  • Several residents suggested that dog-waste bins and signs be set up to help eliminate littered sidewalks.
  • Public works will look at long-existing sink holes located on the Presidents Streets, at the ends of Belmont and Cleveland Avenues at Walnut Street.

The new Democrat administration launched the Long Beach Listens meetings last month at the West End Community Center. The next meeting is scheduled for the North Park neighborhood at the Martin Luther King Center at 7:30 p.m. on April 4.

Jeff Boober March 25, 2012 at 03:52 PM
The Long Beach Illegal Housing hotline is a sham: Emails sent to them are not answered. Messages left on the "hot line" are never returned. Typical Democrats telling lies and charging us for them. HoW about the City Council members will illegal rentals in their homes?
Jeff Boober March 25, 2012 at 03:54 PM
107 East Walnut -- Section 8 scum running illegal landscaping business from taxpayer-rented house. Nine Mexicans living there and you are paying the rent for the pig who says she lives there with her kids. Wow, even interviewing for new landscaping accounts on CraigsList and looking for employees -- off the books -- too. Garbage everywhere, trucks with rotten grass in them. Turned them in to the Democrats at City Hall. They wouln'd even listen! Good work, Long Beach Democrats. Keep it coming. Soon you'll bankrupt this place altogether.
John March 25, 2012 at 04:15 PM
How is this a democrat/republican issue? Please explain.
Friend of Bill March 25, 2012 at 04:37 PM
Democrats have sought a 100% increase in free Section 8 housing. Cuomo wants all apartments to be controlled by Section 8. Spending on free rents tripled by Obama. More freeloading scum moving next door to YOU, ruining your investment values thanks to Democrats.
Candygram for Mongo March 25, 2012 at 04:57 PM
Are they confirmed Mexican?
Lloyd March 25, 2012 at 08:22 PM
Do they speak "Mexican" and wear sombreros? Maybe they are Azerbaijani's??
Jeff March 26, 2012 at 12:38 AM
Hope the dirtbags move right into the house next to yours in Massapequa, Lloyd. Then see how much wiseass crap you've got to say.
Lloyd March 26, 2012 at 02:57 AM
I had a Salvadorean landlord downstairs from me in Westbury. His family is a lot classier than yours. The entire neighborhood just north of Old Country Rd was overwhelmingly Central America immigrant families. It's a lot friendlier and safer than yours too. I see some of the posts here are borderline racist and should be deleted before they offend the honorable and fair minded people here in Long Beach.
Lloyd March 26, 2012 at 03:06 AM
And the same bigots here who complain about the vagrants hanging out by Waldbaum's can't wait for the new King Kullen to be opened so they can shop in an all White neighborhood and put Waldbaums and it's neighbors out of business. Then they'll all be whining when government entitlement centers or Section 8 housing is built on that site. By then, my gal will be retired, collecting fat pensions, and waving to you all from West Palm Beach.
MAG1215LB March 26, 2012 at 12:37 PM
Dog park? Have you seen it? Its a fence around a tiny pie slice of land thats about 3 car lengths long and one car wide. I brought my dog there and even she laughed at it. That was a bone Sofied threw in a cheap attempt to buy votes.
Tideline March 26, 2012 at 01:17 PM
I am one of the people who is looking forward to KK opening. If that means that eventually, Waldbaums goes out of business, too bad. That is the way of the free market. Perhaps Prudential will get the increasing number of vacancies rented there (LOL) and you won't have Section 8 housing there, but still no Waldbaums ? Time will tell, KK does seem to be making rapid construction progress, the clock is ticking.
Tideline March 26, 2012 at 06:50 PM
I just found out that KK will be open in about ~ 6 months. Time is getting short. Waldbaums never had to compete with a major chain within 1 mile, this should be inteesting.
Penn street voter March 26, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Larry Benowitz ? Bought a new job for only a $2500 donation to the Democratic Party. Executive Youth Director ? salary $115,000. NICE country America ! Probably had to swear fealty to City Manager Jack Schnirman and the city council. Terrible decision, what are his qualifications ? Is this what they meant by ABOVE BOARD? WE will remember next election. OUTRAGEOUS !!!!!
Candygram for Mongo March 26, 2012 at 08:31 PM
"Nice country America"? What dat mean?
Lucy Centeno March 26, 2012 at 09:19 PM
Mr Swanson, I have no idea where you get your info from. But, I will gladly enlighten you and your bigoted cronies that are out there. FIRST of all, SECTION 8 does NOT allow illegal apartments, nor do they bring property value down. Inspections are done to make sure the property is up to code and that everything is LEGAL! SECOND: a deed with the owners name AND the number of LEGAL dwellings in the property MUST be PRESENTED TO SECTION 8. In that being done, the TAX department is notified. Maybe that is why there are so many illegal rentals. If you don't keep your property up to code, or get 1800 illegally got dollars from rentals not on the tax books, you can be king of the hill. On the other hand, if you keep your property up to code, report your earnings the way you should and take pride in your property, you would NOT lose a thing. And by the way, you call section 8 tenants scum. Check this out. If a homeowner takes pride and care of their home, they would be RESPONSIBLE LANDLORDS! Meaning, their house would be up to code, proper permits would be gotten for decks and kitchens and finished basements, and parking wouldn't be as bad as it is. So, my dear MR. Swanson, seems to me you are calling the WRONG people SCUM! It is YOUR neighbors and AFFILIATIONS that are the SCUM. Cheating on taxes and living higher on a lower income of people is how people feel entitled.
Lucy Centeno March 26, 2012 at 09:26 PM
Furthermore, if a landlord or realtor were really responsible, once they get the info from a perspective tenant, they would do a surprise check on where the person currently lives and the conditions of how they keep house. Talk to the current neighbors/landlord to see what the history of rent payment is or what kind of traffic and noise is contributed by this perspective tenant. All in the name of protecting your property. Not everyone on SECTION is bad and not everyone that owns a home is good. That this ignorance is still out there is a crime in itself! Enjoy your day.
Castles Made of Sand March 27, 2012 at 12:07 AM
LLoyd, the problem is not if they are Mexican, Salvadoran, Guatemalan, etc. The problem is that they are illegally residing in a residence in Long Beach (and perhaps the United States) and are not paying taxes as is the lawful thing to do. Someone (maybe the landlord) allows a smelly commercial vehicle to be parked illegally as well next to this mans home. Yes, the comments are bigoted and should be curtailed, but they are born out of immense frustration with the prolonged state of affairs in Long Beach and the country as a whole. As for Wauldbaums, I passed through the entrance the other day and not only did it smell disgusting, but there was a heated disagreement, shouting of the "N" word, and much profanity at the recycling station. I believe the sentiments regarding King Kullen would be the same if they were white people acting like degenerates and the smell of stale beer and urine abounded. It's a matter of cleaning up Long Beach. And that is not to say it needs to be lily white. It simply needs to be run fairly, lawfully, and start taking into consideration the quality of life for the people that live here.
john March 27, 2012 at 02:15 PM
first of all Lloyd i bet you can only fit 3 dogs at a time in the so called dog park... and if this so called dog parked actually cost taxpayer money we should look into it and see where the money really went. and as for walking dogs, dog owners need to learn how to clean up after there dogs, wether it is on the beach or on the sidewalks.
Jeff Dahmer April 20, 2012 at 06:14 PM
We do have a Wall around Long Beach it's called a Eruv
Lloyd April 20, 2012 at 09:28 PM
That whole thing is so riduculous. By stringing a wire around the City it somehow gives Orthodox Jews a pass to carry stuff on the Sabbath. I would offer my.opinion, but dont want to start an.inquisition against me.
Lloyd April 20, 2012 at 09:34 PM
And regarding our Waldbaums...I never encountered all the bad stuff some of you have expressed here. And I even use the indoor recycling machines sometimes. I find their prices are lower with more sale items than the other supermarkets, the selection extensive, and the food is fresh. The other little crap doesnt bother me. They probably will freshen things up when the competition heats up.
danielle April 21, 2012 at 03:09 PM
well so much hate grow up too bad your life sucks hope the smell gets nasty and they dump the grass on your old ugly unkept home but your one of those dirty old jews. go mexicans
I.D. April 21, 2012 at 04:02 PM
i have made more than 50 phone calls to the building department regarding 3 homes on my block that are SRO, GROUP RENTALS, and ILLEGAL OCCUPANCY. thusfar, there have been no actions, and i am wondering what is left. due to this practice, over the last month, there are 8, count them, 8 new cars from 325 east hudson, alone. upstairs is a group rental (there was a summer group rental that i called about numerous times regarding blocking my driveway with the countless cars for saturday parties) downstairs are 2 couples that are renting. at 353 upstairs rents single rooms, and at 354 there is an illegal downstairs apt. last year there was a fire scare and several volunteer firefighters (who were also employed by the city) noticed the infractions and never did anything about it. how many times do i have to speak with head of building, police and fire departments. i bet if i did not pay my taxes on time someone would be on my back, endlessly.
I.D. April 21, 2012 at 04:03 PM
I.D. April 21, 2012 at 04:06 PM
Lloyd April 21, 2012 at 11:21 PM
To Castles Made of Sandwiches..... I love your fantasy tales about Waldbaums. They are very entertaining. You have a good imagination and should try writing novellas for Univision or Telemundo. Maybe BET would buy your story about the N word. Are yiu sure it just wasnt some loud car radio outside blasting some degenerate rap song? As far as all those illegal rentals and tenants... I think it would be fair to say that many of them are true blue Americans just looking to find some cheap housing and even doubling up to save money. Why the City takes no action against them could only be answered with a question.. Who does the landlord know....in City Hall?
Mark S. April 22, 2012 at 01:53 PM
You got to be kidding me. You first impression when you walk in is stale beer. I have written to Waldbaums for years about this and there responce is "were going to look into this". Stop & Shop is for me. Bye Bye Waldbaums...!!! King Kullen here we come!
Lloyd April 22, 2012 at 02:47 PM
Mark. .... I guess my sense of smell most be less sensitive than yours. I don't smell nothing there. and the store inside is fine. Maybe they need to place more fresh flowers around for you. And the way everyone is so anti smoking around here, at least the place doesn't smell from old cigarette butts.
I.D. April 22, 2012 at 05:39 PM
have you been able to get any help from the building department, another sham!!! 325 east hudson street has 4 permanent upstairs and then their girlfriends (8 cars) and downstairs, 2 couples living there (4) cars...12 new cars every day, luckily i have off street parking....so the non-taxpayers can fill up the entire block, from monroe to lincoln. and with that comes the garbage they leave under their cars. now we have house parties, garbage and a million cars all weekend. HELP


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