Long: Wants to be a voice for new ideas


Publisher’s note: Lake Tahoe News asked candidates for South Lake Tahoe City Council, Lake Tahoe Community College, Lake Tahoe Unified School District, Douglas County School District, South Tahoe Public Utility District and Lake Valley Fire Protection District a series of questions. We are running the responses in the order received.

Ted Long

Ted Long is running for one of two seats open on the South Lake Tahoe City Council.

Name: Ted Long

Age: 78

Job/profession: Attorney, lecturer, professor of economics and law

What boards, commissions, or other experience, including volunteering, do you have?: Prior council member, planning commissioner, past president League of California Sacramento division, two time chairmen of LAFCO four-year member, LAFCO and elected to state board, city rep to LTVA, and member of the Eisenhower Foundation, cities and the urban crises panel. Over the past 50 years I have served on over 25 boards and commissions. On the local level I was a past treasurer of the Art League, served on Latino Affairs Committee. Sponsored local soccer season, worked with TRPA on affordable housing and served six years on the El Dorado County Food Bank board.

Why are you running for City Council?: To be a voice for the “little guy” to represent the citizens’ of the city and to provide a voice for new and different ideas.

Why should voters vote for you over another candidate?: My qualifications, the relationships I have created that will serve the city, my willingness to put in the extra time and the policies I support.

What distinct experience or competency makes you uniquely qualified to lead effectively as an elected official?: See answer 4. I have been an advocate for change and equality for over 50 years.

Public agencies have been under scrutiny the last few years for lack of transparency and accountability. What will you do to ensure both?: Public disclosure and holding public meetings I would like to see a third monthly meeting held to discuss issues and to bring various departments for the public to interact with.

What stands out for you in the current budget that you support and that you would change?: Priority needs to be infrastructure and reestablishing community police and fire departments. We need a review of the recreational facilities for repair and update.

Do you support current legislation for $15 minimum wage? Please explain: Yes, corporate profits are at an all-time high. The spirit of democracy demands that the wealth be fairly distributed. As we look at other countries we clearly see that employees can receive a livable wage and working conditions while companies grow. I recently completed a tour of German factories and saw fairness work.

Do you support Proposition 55? Please explain: Legislating personal behavior like this has never worked. Probation is the best example. There is already a robust trade in marijuana we need to regulate and tax, the funds committed to raising the standard of living for the poorest.

Describe three attributes for a successful council: Skill (qualifications), concern and availability. A willingness to use the platform to expand the city’s relationship with other cities, state and federal officials, like the work I did with the League of California cities.

What are your thoughts about public employee defined benefits?: Public employees deserve a good benefit program, at least on par with private programs. They must also face the problems and issues that confront all employers and have programs they can depend on.

Please explain your position regarding contracting out work normally done by staff: Only when extraordinary requirements would require it.

What is your 10-year vision for South Lake Tahoe?: Roads repaired, economy booming and several new low and work force housing projects under way. We need to develop our relationship with the high tech industries, this will bring real jobs to the area. I propose a committee be formed and visit the Silicon Valley to determine exactly what it will take to get those that can work anywhere do our town.

What one vote in the last four years that the current council made do you disagree with and why?: Mostly the internal bickering and the general attitude that I hear about in their willingness to listen to all views, more then a few have told me that they do not think the council listens. I am proposing a third, non-official meeting each month just to talk and interact on the issues of the day.

How many City Council meetings have you attended this year?: I believe four, I do watch on TV as well.

What do you know about the strategic plan, finances, debt, and goals of the city?: I understand the economic development issues, the refinance of debt and I am not sure what the effects and  alternatives are to the abandonment of redevelopment in the state.

Being on the council means working as a team. How will you work with the sitting members for the greater good of the community?: I am very clear that to get something done you need support of others, I will work to earn and deserve that support. I have demonstrated some ability in being selected as foreman of the grand jury, elected to the state board of LAFCO, two times selected as its chairman and my leadership role with the League of California Cities.

What should be the three main priorities for the council?: Roads, community spirit and affordable housing.

What have you done to make yourself ready to be a council member?: History of involvement, follow local issues.

What role should government have in housing for residents?: A livable home is as important as any other freedom we have. I believe that inadequate or non-existing housing is a key issue in the cause of many of the other problems we have. We provide public support if your home is damaged by natural disaster, why not if you can’t afford it?

How can the city partner with the school district to improve high school graduation rates?: To be available to assist, to be a role model. To find mutual areas of interest and to develop them. We must also expand our role with the college. For example if we are successful in making our city the best place for high tech work, then the college might look to courses that support that career.

How can local government support and expand job creation and small local businesses?: By supporting the business community, provide affordable housing and demonstrate and share community spirit. By reaching out, there are thousands that can work anywhere, why are they not here?

If you believe in the one South Shore concept, what would you do to further make this a reality? If you don’t believe in blurring the state line, why don’t you?: I think it is a realty, we need to work together, we have a lot more in common than that which could separate us, we must remember that with current technology the entire world is a smaller place.

What are your views on:

a: Vacation home rentals: I support private property rights and respect the needs of residence for safe and sane neighborhoods. This issue can be resolved.

b: Loop road: Not sure yet, on the surface I like the idea of a mall or walking space I also want all the residence protected with replacement housing.

c: City streets: High priority, needs work

d: Relationships with other public agencies: My involvement with many as a member and leader demonstrates my recognition of their importance and the need to work together. I consider the post as councilmember an important introduction into other organizations. This is where you build relationships and get support for your city.

e: Recreation: Number two job of the city.

f. TRPA defined commodities: I understand the reason behind them but feel that they slow potential growth and the solving of housing issues. I have seen major shifts in TRPA’s view and a willing to work together. Higher quality development means better environmental controls.

g. Transient occupancy tax measure: Support, as long as the funds are spend to address tourist needs and problems.

h. Sales tax measure: Not sure yet, my principal concern is the use of the money.

i. What do you want the additional sales tax money to go to?: If done, to housing and support a growing economy.

Tell us something about yourself that people may not know: I mean well and want to work for the greater good. I believe that open, honest discussion will lead to solutions. I believe that if something is not working you need to try something else, not just do it over and over.

How will you be a different council member compared to when you served before?: I believe that I have mellowed and have become more open. I certainly have learned a lot in the past years.


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Comments (2)
  1. 4-mer-usmc says - Posted: September 1, 2016

    Oh jeez–not another user of that “little guy” moniker. That term is condescending and that designation which diminishes the every-man/every-person citizen is insulting.

  2. Robin Smith says - Posted: September 1, 2016

    Little dogs get back on the porch!