LONG BEACH — Naming the new Long Beach library after Billie Jean King is expected to cross another hurdle today.
The City’s Housing and Neighborhoods Committee is scheduled to vote on whether the item should be approved and sent back to the City Council for a final vote. The Committee meets at 2:30 today in Long Beach City Council Chambers.
The council approved the idea last week and forwarded the motion to the Housing and Neighborhoods Committee. The council vote was 7-0. Councilwoman Suzie Price was absent from the meeting and the District One council seat is vacant. A special election will take place next year to fill the open seat left by Lena Gonzalez, who had more than three years remaining in her term and was elected to the State Senate.
The 93,000 square foot library is scheduled to open September 21.
The recommendation for the committee is to approve naming the facility the Billie Jean King Main Library. The three-member committee includes Councilmen Dee Andrews, Al Austin, Daryl Supernaw.
During last week’s council vote, some members of the public disagreed with the naming idea in general. They suggested instead to simply name it the Long Beach Main Library.
Other people said that King is identified with athletics, not education.
Supporters said that the tennis legend and Long Beach native inspires greatness among all people.
More than 1,200 community members sent letters or signed petitions supporting the idea that the library be named for King.