Long Beach expands beach food choices, approves new shelter operator

A finished part of the Long Beach boardwalk A finished part of the Long Beach boardwalk on Oct. 15, 2013. Photo Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa

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Long Beach will offer a variety of food choices along the beach and boardwalk this summer.

The City Council voted 4-0 Wednesday night to enter into agreements with 15 vendors to operate food trucks, stationary carts and mobile sales on the beach from Memorial Day through Labor Day for a total fee of $59,500. City Council president Scott Mandel was absent.

The vendors, mostly from Long Beach, will offer barbecue, Latin American dishes, seafood, ice cream, frozen yogurt, iced coffee drinks, smoothies and sandwiches.

"It's a chance to enhance the local flavor," said City Manager Jack Schnirman, adding that more than 200 requests for proposals were sent out by the city.

Residents said during the community boardwalk outreach last year that they wanted a wide array of food choices. The only beach vendor last summer was Dover Catering, plus eight vendors that were part of the "Shoregasboard" food truck market at the end of Riverside Boulevard.

The council also voted 4-0 to approve a contract with Manhattan-based nonprofit Posh Pets Rescue to provide animal shelter services.

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The $95,000 contract starts Saturday with options to renew annually. Posh Pets Rescue has agreed to make $100,000 in renovations at the Park Place facility, which handles as many as 15 dogs and 30 cats at a time.

"The proper care of animals in Long Beach is of priority to the city and Posh Pets Rescue has demonstrated the ability to care for animals, promote adoption awareness and promote community engagement through education and adoption events," Schnirman said, adding the group has a history of more than 10 years as a rescue operation.

Posh Pets Rescue was selected with the input of eight volunteers on the Animal Shelter Governing Board, formed in September.

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About 17 animal rescue organizations were contacted about possibly becoming the shelter operator, Police Commissioner Michael Tangney said.

The city in October ended its $15,000 annual shelter-operation contract with Rescue Ink, which gained national fame in 2009 with a reality show on the National Geographic channel that filmed eight tattooed, motorcycle-riding men saving strays and abused animals.

The nonprofit's co-founder John Orlandini was charged with grand larceny in May for allegedly stealing $15,000 in checks meant for the animal shelter. The charges have been dismissed.

Volunteers have been running the animal shelter since October.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misstated the status of the grand larceny charges against Orlandini,

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