News Details
Councilmember Lowenthal Introduces Council Item to Assist Victims of Recent Flooding
Council Supports Motion to Waive Fees and Offer Low Interest Loans

The deluge of rain and winds hitting Long Beach during the week of January 19th through February 10th caused millions of dollars in damage to private and public property.  Review of rainfall numbers indicates that Long Beach received approximately 7.19 inches of rain over 5 days, including 1.5 inches within a one-hour period on Wednesday, totals that reached 50 & 100 year high marks and were easily among the highest for cities in Southern California.  Storm drain systems and sand bag supplies at Fire Stations were overwhelmed during the torrential downpour as city crews, residents and businesses tried to contain rising floodwaters.  Unfortunately, properties throughout the City were damaged by flooding, leaving residents without a place to stay and businesses without space to operate.   

A preliminary assessment estimates the storm caused approximately $2 million in damage to homes and businesses in Long Beach, and cost the City of Long Beach an estimated $1 million damage to public buildings and approximately $200,000 in personnel costs.

Public facilities reporting significant damage include the Main Library, several Park facilities and the Student Union at California State University at Long Beach. The storm damaged several other City facilities, vehicles and equipment.

As residents and businesses assess damage and determine next steps for repairing or rebuilding facilities on their property, City government has identified ways to support their efforts such as waiving building permit or utility hook-up fees, expediting approval processes and offering low-interest loans.  We would expect these efforts to occur in concert with insurance companies.  Despite the City’s own budget shortfall and storm-related damages, the City can make a difference in the lives of our constituents through these small, but earnest gestures to assist them in a time of need.

Click here to access a special Web Page and provide information about storm damage, which will be used to contact residents and business when opportunities for assistance programs are available. The information also will help identify the extent of damage experienced by the public, and help people detail their damage and estimated financial loss. 

Residents are encouraged to first contact their insurance companies to assess what portion of the damage will be covered by insurance.  Now that the State of California has declared an emergency, State financial assistance opportunities will likely be available. The City will act as the conduit between residents and businesses and the State to access disaster assistance from the State.

If you were a victim of flooding, please click on the links below for more information. 

Flood Victim Assistance Council Resolution

Flood Victim Assistance Low Interest Loan Status Update 2/12/10

UPDATE ( as of February 19, 2010)

Attached are press releases distributed by the County of Los Angeles Office of Emergency Management and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announcing the establishment of a temporary Local Assistance Center (LAC) in Long Beach next week, and information and services that are being made available to Los Angeles County homeowners, renters and businesses that were impacted by the recent storms.

In addition to those federal, state and county programs, the Long Beach City Council has approved the waiver of permit fees for repairs to storm-related property damage, to help the community recover from the recent unprecedented rainstorms and flooding.

All City permit fees associated with work necessary to repair, rebuild, or replace properties damaged or destroyed by the recent floods and storms will be waived, including (partial list):

· Building, Electrical, Mechanical, Plumbing and Combined Permit Fees

· Plan Check Fees

· Utility Re-establishment Fees

· Fire Department Plan Check Fees

The retroactive waiver will cover storm-related damage incurred between January 19 and February 10, 2010. Permits must be applied for on or before June 1, 2010.

To take advantage of this temporary assistance, please contact the Development Services Department at (562) 570-LBDS, or visit the Development Services Permit Center at City Hall, 333 W. Ocean Blvd., 4th Floor, Long Beach, CA 90802. You may also learn more about services available, and Permit Center hours at

Additionally, homeowners, renters and businesses may be eligible for a low-interest Disaster Recovery Loan from the SBA, whose representatives will be available at the temporary LAC being established by the State of California and the County of Los Angeles at the Long Beach Gas & Oil Department, located at 2400 E. Spring Street, Long Beach, CA 90806.

Operating hours for the LAC will be Tuesday, February 23 through Friday, February 26 from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm, and Saturday, February 27 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. More information about SBA disaster assistance is available at

Los Angeles County Press Release

Small Business Association Press Release

( Councilmember Lowenthal's Flood Victim Assistance Motion )