Vice Mayor Garcia Wants to Enhance the City’s Use of Technology Through Creation of New Commission

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Vice Mayor Robert Garcia - Photo from Facebook

Vice Mayor Robert Garcia – Photo from Facebook

Long Beach Vice Mayor Robert Garcia has proposed the creation of a Technology and Innovation Commission to advise the Council on new technology, investing in technological innovation and infrastructure, and to serve as a clearinghouse for ideas to enhance the City’s use of technology and its place in the tech economy.

“Long Beach can be a national leader on technology, the new tech economy, and civic innovation,” said Vice Mayor Garcia. “Over the last few years we have made significant investments in technology infrastructure, but there is much more we can do.”

If the legislation were approved by Council at its Meeting of September 17, the commission proposal would head to the Economic Development & Finance Committee of the City Council, and then back to City Council for final approval. The Commission would be comprised of Long Beach residents with special skills, knowledge, expertise and interest in technological innovation.

Over the last few years, Vice Mayor Garcia has authored numerous pieces of tech legislation and initiatives including the creation of the “Go Long Beach” smartphone application, new online permits and licenses, the use of social media for city departments, an open government initiative, an online city contract database, a new city website launching next year, free WiFi initiatives for parks and libraries, and technology upgrades throughout the city. In addition, he requested a new $250,000 technology and innovation fund in the FY 2014 City Budget that was approved by the City Council.

“We want our best and brightest minds to serve on the commission, and to help us find new ways to solve our civic challenges,” said Garcia.

The Commission would be made up of 11 members, 1 from each district, and 2 at-large members for a total of 11. All appointments are made by the Mayor and approved by the City Council.

The legislation is cosponsored by Councilmembers DeLong, O’Donnell, and Neal.

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