Gratitude from Brand

I want to acknowledge all the heartfelt letters of support that have appeared in this paper, as well as the cards, emails, phone calls and even hugs on the street from people I don’t even know. While being diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer is scary, every bit as overwhelming has been the warmth, compassion and genuine well wishes expressed by so many.

For everyone who is told they have cancer, it hits like a bolt of lightning. And being Mayor, it doesn’t just hit me and my close family and friends, it hit a community that has been nothing but compassionate and supportive. I want to take this opportunity to express my deep appreciation to everyone who has reached out to us as we face this latest challenge.

One of the many things I’ve learned in the short, eventful five weeks since being diagnosed is that there are millions of people out there finding ways every day to live full lives while dealing with serious illnesses. It has been truly inspiring to listen with a new found appreciation to individual stories of suddenly going from leading normal, healthy lives to everything changing to a renewed focus on health and the importance of your personal relationships.

While a cancer diagnoses is never a good thing, with all the latest state of the art medical care situated right here in the South Bay, like the brand new City of Hope facility in Torrance, this is one of the best places in the world to be for access to the latest treatment for any kind of illness.

For now though, I’m just a future cancer survivor doing what he’s told by the people who deal with these challenges every day. I plan to be living with this for a very long time so thanks again for all the prayers and letters of support. They’re working!

—Bill Brand, Redondo Beach mayor

Vendors on the beach

Last week I was at the beach during the day (specifically 10th street and Strand) and was completely shocked by the amount of vendors on the beach selling beach toys, knock off boogie boards and ice cream. Each vendor came around more than once and pestered each beach goer sitting on the sand. The person selling the ice cream had his own cart and people were buying the ice cream. These people were peddling their unlicensed wares just feet from the lifeguard station. Nothing was done and to me a blind eye was turned.

It is illegal to sell items on the beach, but does Manhattan Beach care? Doesn’t seem like it. What about all the businesses just feet from the beach who pay rent, taxes, etc. How many of those businesses were not patronized that day because their customers were allowed to buy from someone who is unlicensed, not paying taxes or rent.

So does Manhattan Beach condone selling items on the beach? If they don’t they need get control of the situation before it gets worse.

—Dee Sharp, Hermosa Beach

Undergrounding in MB

“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” —Benjamin Franklin.

Déjà Vu: Utility undergrounding is taking a page from former Manhattan Beach City Manager Mark Danaj’s playbook. City Council will hire an engineer for Undergrounding at $168,000 annually.

Undergrounding is the most devise (neighbor against neighbor), despicable, immoral, unfair, controversial and unethical program ever proposed by Manhattan Beach City Council. Residents who don’t need or want undergrounding are forced to pay $75,000 - $100,000. (Paid up front – cash) bonds and parcel taxes are paid by all residents.

A survey would be sent out to the residents to ask if they approve or disapprove of Utility Undergrounding. City Council proceeded to manipulate the voting procedure, accepted a $80,000 bribe for one district, scare tactics and gerrymandered another district. Southern California Edison doubled the assessment costs on two districts, because they had made an error in measurement.

Edison Electric Institute says undergrounding costs outweigh benefits. Undergrounded wires are not more reliable. Repairing overhead lines is easy and can sometimes be done by one worker. The costs of undergrounding are prohibitive. Only justification for undergrounding is “intangible, unquantifiable benefits.”

Edison was charged with fraudulent activity and fined $30 million and ordered to refund $81 million to customers. Ratepayer-funded incentive program.

Edison-run San Onofre Nuclear Generation Station disciplined the employees who reported problems at the plant. Of course, these problems were real and the plant has been shut-down.

Edison was involved in the Thomas Fire and Woolsey Fire. Unsafe equipment, aging infrastructure, ineffective vegetation management system and electrical infrastructure.

Manhattan Beach residents don’t have a choice for an electricity provider (Edison), but we do have a choice not to use the incompetent, fraudulent Edison for utility undergrounding.

—Robert Bush, Manhattan Beach

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