Access to records from BCHD
It seems that Beach Cities Health District is selectively too small and too busy to adhere to the California Public Records Act these days. In early June, BCHD blindsided the public with its newest, final, tallest and biggest plan for their campus over-development (6-story "up-scale" apartments, 8-story 800+ car parking structure, 75-feet tall, 700,000+ square feet), while providing only minimal information. As a result, the only route to extract needed data from BCHD is to use state law. But BCHD is slow-rolling, providing the following "the District is a small public agency ... operating under emergency protocols due to the COVID -19 crisis."
BCHD isn't too small to do the projects that it "wants" to do though. For instance, from March to June, BCHD prepared its tallest, largest assisted living over-development plan ever, while COVID was killing seniors at Kensington assisted living. Ironic isn't it, that a "small" public health agency was full-speed ahead in the real estate development business when it needed 100% laser-focus on public health? Ironic isn't it, that a "small" public health agency with a $15M a year budget that desperately wants to build senior assisted living didn't focus on the sick and dying in assisted living right in its bakckyard? Apparently no lessons to be learned there. BCHD isn't so small that it didn't budget $7.6M of our taxpayer-owner money toward campus over-development activities. The only time BCHD is "small" is when it wants to plead poverty to avoid answering hard questions about its commercial real estate development activity. BCHD isn't so small that the CEO can't be paid over $300K. BCHD lost most of its moral authority when it alloted itself 3,987 days to plan and replan their over-development, and then dumped it's final over-development plan out on a Friday night at 605PM and approved it 3 business days later at their Board meeting, cutting off the public's right to read, analyze and comment on the plan. Opposition at the board meeting was overwhelming. Now BCHD is shirking its legal responsibility to conform with the Public Records Act. Just because BCHD will be approving its own environmental impact report doesn't mean that it can ignore state law, the public, and its taxpayer-owners. —Mark Nelson, Redondo Beach BCHD Community Working Group Volunteer