Here are the latest local news highlights to kick off the week of July 24, 2023.
Long Beach Establishes Women and Girls Commission
The Long Beach City Council has unanimously approved the creation of the Women and Girls Commission, which will focus on improving the health, economic stability, safety, and connectedness of women and girls in the city. The vote to approve the commission was approved after the Long Beach Women’s Fair that took place outside City Hall earlier that afternoon. The commission will consist of 11 members, including two seats reserved for girls under 18, and will be responsible for recommending policies to ensure gender equality, addressing issues of discrimination, promoting women’s safety, and expanding educational opportunities. The formation of the commission follows nearly 50 years of advocacy by local leaders, and its establishment coincided with the 100th anniversary of the proposed Equal Rights Amendment being introduced to Congress. The commission’s goals are informed by a citywide survey answered by nearly 2,000 residents. Applications for commission membership are now open to the public, and Long Beach will seek additional funding to support the new body in the long term. Learn more here.
Long Beach Launches Lived Experience Advisory Board to Improve Homeless Services
The City of Long Beach is forming a new Lived Experience Advisory Board to gather valuable feedback on homeless services. They are recruiting 11 residents who are currently or were previously homeless to join this paid committee to provide insights into the development of new policies and services for the homeless community. They will also review proposed policies and procedures before they are approved by the Long Beach Continuum of Care and Long Beach Homeless Services Bureau. Members of the advisory board will receive a monthly salary stipend, transportation stipend, and childcare reimbursement. The initiative aims to ensure that the experiences and perspectives of those who have been affected by homelessness are at the forefront of the City’s response efforts. Interested individuals can apply at the City’s Multi Service Center, Mobile Access Center (1301 W. 12th St.), through a participating service provider, or online. The funding for this board comes from the Long Beach Homeless Services Bureau using Homeless Housing Assistance and Prevention (HHAP) funding received from the State of California. Learn more here.
Long Beach Neighborhood Associations Invited to Apply for Grants Supporting Community Initiatives
The Long Beach Development Services Department is offering $250,000 in grant opportunities for neighborhood associations to support public service programs and neighborhood events or improvement projects. The first program, known as the Community Development Block Grant, will award a minimum of 15 grants, each up to $10,000, to qualified applicants for public service programs or projects in specific lower-income areas. The total funding available for these grants is $150,000, aimed at enhancing neighborhood conditions, collaborations, and revitalization efforts. Interested applicants can visit longbeach.gov/hudgrants. The application deadline is Thursday, August 24, 2023. The second program, known as the Neighborhood Micro Grant Program, offers approximately 67 micro-grants, each up to $1,500 with a total of $100,000 in funding available. These grants can be used to focus on blight reduction, financial or employment events, improving neighborhood spirit, collaboration, and revitalization efforts. Other activities, like crime awareness, fair housing, and health/mental health services, can also be included. Interested parties can find the Neighborhood Micro Grant Program applications at longbeach.gov/nmgp, and the application process will continue until all funding is committed. Learn more here.
Long Beach Explores Possibility of New Dog-Friendly Beach
The Long Beach City Council has approved a request from Vice Mayor Cindy Allen to investigate the potential for creating an additional dog beach in the Second District. Currently, the city’s only dog-friendly beach is Rosie’s Dog Beach in Belmont Shore, making it the sole off-leash dog beach in all of Los Angeles County. The Parks, Recreation, and Marine Department, along with the Public Works Department, will search for suitable sites in the Second District and present their findings, including size, boundaries, and regulations, to the council in about two months. The report will also include any associated costs, and the council will ultimately decide whether to proceed with establishing a new dog-friendly beach, benefiting residents in various areas of Long Beach. Learn more here.
12th Annual Uptown Jazz Festival coming to Long Beach August 19
Long Beach, CA, is hosting the 12th Annual Uptown Jazz Festival in collaboration with Ninth District Councilmember Joni Ricks-Oddie. The festival will be headlined by the American funk band, The Original Lakeside, and will take place on August 19, 2023, from 2 to 7 p.m. at Houghton Park. The event will feature live music performances, a food and beer garden, a Kids Zone, and various vendor and community resource booths. Other performers include DW3, Biscuits & Gravy Live, and Los Chicos Del Mambo, with DJ Mr. Quick providing intermittent sets throughout the day. The festival aims to celebrate community, music, and culture and has become a beloved tradition in North Long Beach. Permitted businesses and community organizations interested in participating as vendors can sign up via the vendor interest form by August 9. Additional information can be found on the Uptown Jazz Festival webpage at longbeach.gov/uptownjazzfest.