Skip to main content

Long Beach city government - Google News

Open Government - Google News

Schipske Launches Innovative On Line Tool to Engage Residents in Decisions

For immediate release
Contact Tiffany Andrews: 562 570-6932

Schipske Launches Another Innovative On Line Way for Residents To Vote on Budget Cuts –
IdeaScale Allows People to Engage in Discussion About Other Ideas Too

August 15, 2012 – From the moment she posted her Council calendar on line and set up her blog six years ago, Fifth District Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske has brought one innovative way after another to open up Long Beach city government to its residents. 

So when she looked how to combine “crowd sourcing” with citizen engagement, she found a perfect source with

“I talked with Josh Folk, VP of Government Relations at IdeaScale and he walked me through how this could work to get residents to go on line and actually rank and discuss the proposed budget cuts,” explains Schipske. “When I found out IdeaScale is used throughout the federal government and by Fortune 500 companies such as Avid, Xerox, SAP, Wired Magazine, Choice Hotels to get feedback from citizens and customers I thought why not here in Long Beach.”

Schipske, who has made cuts to her own council budget and staff, took time to input the proposed cuts and information herself into  . “That’s the kind of work I do in the middle of the night.”

“I do hope residents will take time to use this tool,” says Schipske, who also urged the City to utilize the interactive budget challenge made available by Next10. (It can be viewed at ). 

“If this works, I can see using this on many policy issues facing the City Council as a way to get residents engaged. I also think it can be used to solicit city employee ideas on how to save money and make their departments more efficient.”

Enhanced by Zemanta

Popular posts from this blog

Four Taxpayers Step Up To Oppose The Taking of Utility Revenues

Four Long Beach taxpayers stepped up this month to write arguments in opposition to Measure M which will appear on the June ballot. (Click here to read more about Measure M)

The Measure asks voters to approve a 12% transfer of gross revenues of the City's natural gas, water and sewer utilities.

Tom Stout, Joe Weinstein, Diana Lejins and Gerrie Schipske submitted a 300 word argument in opposition to Measure M that outlines why the tax measure should be defeated:

Dear Voter,

VOTE NO. STOP THIS BLATANT MONEY GRAB. The Mayor and Council are spending more than one-half million dollars of your taxes to put this measure on the ballot. Special interests will spend hundreds of thousands in support. Why? The Mayor and Council were caught taking millions of dollars in illegal fees from the Water Department’s sewer and water pipeline budget. They raised your sewer and water bills to pay for the illegal fees. A brave taxpayer stopped them. She filed a lawsuit which forced the City to return …

Sign the Petition -- Repeal Officeholder Accounts in Long Beach

Sign the Petition to Stop Political Slush Funds in Long Beach
The Long Beach Mayor and City Council have totally changed the purpose of "officeholder accounts" by voting to triple the amounts they can raise and by voting to allow the transfer of the officeholder accounts to political campaigns. The voters of the City of Long Beach enacted campaign finance reform back in 1994 to try and stem the flow of special interest money into local elections and to "allow candidates and officeholders to spend a lesser proportion of their time on fund raising and a greater proportion of their time dealing with issues of importance to their constituents." A measure should be placed on the ballot that allows voters to repeal officeholder accounts so elected officials can get back to spending time representing their constituents, instead of doing year-round fundraising.

Things They Need to Tell Us Before They Lease Community Hospital

By: Gerrie Schipske, Author of “Historical Hospitals of Long Beach”
Before everyone gets too excited over the announced possibilities of a new operator of Community Hospital, taxpayers need to be aware that the City of Long Beach owns the deed to the property on which Long Beach Community Hospital sits. 
The actual deed has a restrictive covenant that only allows the property to be used for a “public hospital.” This is because the taxpayers paid for the land and then raised millions of dollars through bonds to pay for the construction and expansion on several occasions. Also, the City even gave money directly to keep the hospital operating. The City holds title to the property.
Historically, the hospital has been operated by the Long Beach Community Hospital Association and then Healthwest, UniHealth, Catholic HealthCare, the Community Hospital Foundation and most recently Memorial Medical.
Memorial is ending its lease because it cannot (or will not) retrofit the hospital to meet state e…