Mayor Feinstein, too, is bothered. For years the council has been told to wait to fill vacancies on the pier board that expired more than a decade ago. There is unfinished business, the council was told; a lease needs to be crafted, the bottom line needs to be signed. Now that Bubba Gump seems a done deal, the council is set to make three appointments to replace board members who have served 14, 16 and 18 years.
Feinstein says it is time to rethink where the pier is headed, to perhaps change priorities and treat the pier that has withstood the storms of nature and politics not as a self-sustaining business venture but as part of the public trust, a park the city subsidizes so its residents can walk to its edge without the distraction of twirling lights and screaming carnival riders, and, after a meal at an old family-owned restaurant, stare at the moon reflected in a silent ocean.
”Bubba is scamming our public location without giving us soul. They wouldn’t change their name,“ said Feinstein, noting that Paramount officials denied requests by the city to use a different name. ”We‘re the ones who control this asset, we have a $360 million (annual city) budget, and to go away whimpering like a small company town is pathetic. This is a selling of our soul.“