LONG BEACH — On April 21 the City of Long Beach announced the formation of an economic Recovery Group that will provide recommendations on the economic impact of the COVID-19 health emergency. Former Mayor, Bob Foster has assembled the members and stepped up as chair of the Economic Recovery Advisory group.
The advisory group recommendations will assist Economic Development, the Health and Human Services Department, the Emergency Operations Center and various other city departments as they strategically transition the city back to normal operations once the pandemic allows for a change in the current health orders.
Additionally, the city will create an online forum for businesses and residents to encourage civic engagement and to provide input on what sectors of the economy are most in demand, and ideas on how businesses and operations could safely reengage. This will help the city better understand the needs of the community as it prepares for future changes to the Health Order in alignment with the county and Governor’s “Stay at Home” order.
The Economic Recovery Advisory Group and pending online forum are only the latest in a series of actions that will help businesses and residents impacted financially by the COVID-19 crisis. Other actions include the establishment of the Long Beach Disaster Relief Fund; a comprehensive Economic Relief Package passed by City Council on April 14; and the launch of Pacific Gateway’s Work Long Beach program. The city also has established a hotline for business owners and workers, 562.570.4249, which is staffed from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.
The membership of the Advisory Group will include the following, consisting of representatives touching numerous sectors in Long Beach:
-Blair Cohn, Economic Development Commissioner and Executive Director, Bixby Knolls -Business Improvement Association
Bob Foster, former Mayor, City of Long Beach
-Caroline Choi, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Southern California Edison
-Griselda Suarez, Executive Director, Arts Council for Long Beach
-Jeremy Harris, Incoming President & CEO, Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce
-Josh La Farga, Planning Commissioner, and Director of Government Affairs, Laborers’ International Union of North American Local 1309
-Josh Lowenthal, President, freeconferencecall.com
-Kerstin Kansteiner, Restaurant/Small Business Owner
-Kraig Kojian, President and CEO, Downtown Long Beach Alliance
-Lou Anne Bynum, Interim Superintendent-President, Long Beach City College
-Luis Navarro, Restaurant/Small Business Owner
-Mario Molina, Doctor/Healthcare Professional
-Randal Hernandez, Chair, Long Beach Economic Partnership
-Ryan Choura, CEO and Founder, Choura, an Experience Company
-Sean Rawson, Co-Founder, President of Residential Division, Waterford Property Company
-Sharleen Higa, President, Long Beach Century Club
-Steve Goodling, President & CEO, Long Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau
-Steve Neal, Harbor Commissioner and Clergy
-Tommy Faavae, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 11
-Vic La Rosa, CEO, President and Co-Founder, Total Transportation Services (TTSI)