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“Thank God men cannot fly, and lay waste the sky as well as the earth.” —Henry David Thoreau Signal See pages 8 and 9 for Earth Day stuff T R I B U N This is Our Famous !"#$%&'!%())) *+,-& .&/-.0) ONCE IN A LIFETIME 1(!%' E Photo by Stephanie Raygoza Serving BixBy KnollS, California HeigHtS, loS CerritoS, Wrigley and tHe City of Signal Hill Vol. 33 No. 46 Your Weekly Community Newspaper SH Council paves way to sell major portion of former redevelopment property to Signal Hill Petroleum CJ Dablo Staff Writer The Signal Hill City Council and its Successor Agency, which now manages the City’s redevelopment matters, approved in a vote of 4-0 several actions at Tuesday’s meeting to pave the way for Signal Hill Petroleum to purchase just over 14 acres of land owned by the City’s now dissolved redevelopment agency. Two separate deals that are worth a total of more than $6.2 million will be presented to the Oversight Board, which ultimately will decide the fate of all of the City’s former redevelopment agency real estate. It’s the first, and likely the largest, of many agreements that the City Council and the Successor Agency are handling now that, as of Feb. 1, California has dissolved the Signal Hill Redevelopment Agency (SHRA) and about 400 other similar agencies throughout the state. Redevelopment agencies had been formed years ago to provide affordable housing and to eliminate blight. Now the Signal Hill officials have to concentrate on the logistics of managing without a critical agency and at the same time handle a significant loss of about 25 acres of real estate. Since legislation required redevelopment agencies to shut down, there are new mandates that the property these agencies had owned now be sold– and sold speedily. City Attorney David Aleshire explained Tuesday night that the entities charged with managing the shutdown of the redevelopment agency had also been responsible for getting rid of the property quickly for as much money as they could get for it. “If they want to dispose of the property as quickly as possible for real money, we’ve keyed this up because that’s kind of the Signal Hill way,” Aleshire said to the Council. “We are out in front of these things trying to deal with these problems and set up a situation to move forward.” Proceeds from both property sales will be legally required to go into the Redevelopsee COUNCIL page 14 April 20, 2012 With an eye toward preserving Long Beach’s emergency resources, Schipske hosts public tour of city’s Emergency Communications and Operations Center Cory Bilicko/Signal Tribune (From left) Mike Sarjeant, interim fire chief; Mike Garcia, deputy fire chief; David Segura, assistant fire chief; Reggie Harrison, deputy city manager; David Honey, bureau administrative manager; Randy Allen, Long Beach police commander; Robert Belcher, Police Communications assistant systems supervisor for the City of Long Beach; and (far right) 5th District Councilmember Gerrie Schipske during Monday’s tour of the Emergency Communications and Operations Center. Cory Bilicko Managing Editor Al Sirignano (center) is surrounded by his daughter Gina Rodriguez (left) and son Tom Sirignano (right) following the City’s announcement that he will be among the honorees at an event celebrating Older Americans Recognition Day. The impetus for her hosting a public meeting at the Emergency Communications and Operations Center (ECOC) Monday evening was the fact that Fire Station #18 in her district no longer has a fire engine, but 5th District Councilmember Gerrie Schipske says she is concerned about cuts to the city’s emergencyresponse resources overall. As part of her “Open Up Long Beach” city-government transparency initiative, Schipske conducted the meeting and tour, which was limited to 30 people to prevent disruptions to the facility’s operations, at the ECOC, located at 2990 Redondo Ave. “I’ve been very concerned about the impact budget cuts pose on Police and Fire in terms of their ability to respond in a timely manner,” she said in the center’s lobby, at the beginning of the tour. “They are doing a fantastic job under the circumstances, but one of the things the Council has rarely ever done since I’ve been there is, after a budget is passed...we never hear back what the impact of that budget was. And so some of us on Council are pushing for that, particularly in public safety, because I hear stories from the people who are out doing this kind of work about what’s going on, but I think officially the City Council needs to hear it before they embark on another round of cuts for the coming year.” Reggie Harrison, deputy city manager for the City of Long Beach, was also in attendance for the presentation. “This is your facility,” he said to the group. “It’s a magnificent emergency-response operation center, and on this top floor we also have our call center, 9-1-1 dispatch, which also now receives the wireless calls as well, so when you call on your cell phone, it used to go to the CHP...A couple of years ago, we fixed that, so now all those calls come directly to this center, and the dispatch is made a lot simpler.” Harrison then introduced Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) Commander Randy Allen, who explained that he would show the touring group how the communication center operates. “We’re see ECOC page 15 O’Donnell, Supernaw in June 5 runoff for District 4; Watkins considering contesting election results Nick Diamantides Staff Writer In the April 10 Long Beach municipal election, Daryl Supernaw, candidate for the City Council 4th district seat, got more votes than incumbent Patrick O’Donnell and third candidate John Watkins, but he still did not get a majority of the votes. Now Supernaw and O’Donnell are slated to run against each other for the June 5 runoff election, while Watkins, who placed third, is contemplating challenging the results of the April 10 election in court. After the initial election night count, the city clerk’s office announced that Supernaw had received the most votes, with only a handful of votes more than O’Donnell, who in turn had only four votes more than Watkins. Later, the city clerk’s office found more than 200 uncounted ballots. When those were added to the tally on Friday, April 13, Supernaw was still the top vote-getter with O’Donnell and Watkins again placing second and third, respectively. see RUNOFF page 13 Patrick O’Donnell Daryl Supernaw John Watkins


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