We live in tough economic times, and we need to adopt an aggressive plan to become the city we have always aspired to be – vibrant, prosperous, and entrepreneurial.
To be a successful city, Long Beach must be a prosperous city. To be prosperous, we must make business and job growth our first priority. That means organizational changes, new thinking, and bold new initiatives.
The plan begins with an overall vision of a new Long Beach, including:
- Safe streets
- Great schools
- Thriving neighborhoods
- Prosperity throughout the city
- Ongoing fiscal discipline
Then, guided by this vision for our future, we must coordinate our efforts, develop the relationships needed to accomplish our goals, and be proactive in the achievement of those goals. This plan can’t be a hit-or-miss series of unrelated activities, uncoordinated efforts, or merely reactive to our circumstances. As Bruce Katz and Jennifer Bradley said in their recent book, The Metropolitan Revolution, “Cities and metropolitan areas are on their own. The cavalry is not coming.” We need to bring seemingly disparate groups together to work towards a consensus, and we need proven, pragmatic leadership. Most importantly, in order to move forward, our leadership must inspire trust.
I propose a citywide effort to identify our vision and the creation of a plan to attain it. This effort cannot be City Hall-centric, but must be community-based with strong leadership. My 11-point plan will change our economic outlook for many years to come. It will position Long Beach for success in the short, medium, and long terms. It is grounded in reality, based on proven principles, and it is achievable.