Long Beach residents voted to pass Measure E, which will establish a police oversight commission and director in the city, during Tuesday’s midterm elections.
Approximately 57% or 31,668 of Long Beach voters choose to establish the commission, replacing the current Citizen Police Complaint Commission (CPCC) with an oversight director and a Police Oversight Commission.
The oversight director, which will be appointed by the city council, will have the authority to access police records and data, be on-scene during major altercations and address issues in the department.
The new oversight commission will consist of seven members, all of whom will be appointed by the Long Beach mayor. Under the new measure, the oversight committee will review the recommendations and receive briefings from the director and the city council.
They will also focus on engaging with the Long Beach community and receive their feedback about the department.
Opponents of the measure argued that the oversight commission would take a vital role away from the public, since Measure E would replace the Citizen Police Complaint Commission (CPCC).
They also criticized the director’s role, expressing that the director would report directly to the city council and take directions from them.
Measure E was proposed on the ballot because groups criticized the structure of CPCC, saying it was too weak to properly overlook and hold the police department accountable.
An evaluation of the 30-year-old commission showed what worked well for CPCC, such as professional investigators involved in the commission that had access to confidential information while retaining civilian perspective.
However, the evaluation also showed “significant limitations” in the internal structure of the commission, which failed to meet “the community’s calls for increased transparency, accountability, and input on addressing broader organizational culture issues within the Long Beach Police Department.”