“If Long Beach was a business, it wouldn’t be in business.”
Long Beach is known for its raucous West End bars, Irish Day parade and two-mile boardwalk. Locally, the city of 34,000 on a barrier island 25 miles east of New York City, is also renowned for fiscal mismanagement.
Residents are still paying off more than $8 million in debt issued almost seven years ago to cover a budget deficit. An investigation last year by the Nassau County District Attorney found that for almost two decades Long Beach had improperly overpaid employees — including the former city manager — millions of dollars for unused vacation and sick days.
Now those long-simmering woes are only getting worse. A $131 million court judgment to a developer in a 30-year legal battle is threatening it with insolvency and Long Beach has hired advisers to craft a debt-cutting plan.
By Martin Z Braun
April 29, 2021, 5:00 AM PDT