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“Beautiful Blueâ€? acrylic on canvas by Monica Fleming See page 8 Signal T Vol. 35 No. 18 R I B U N E SERVING BIXBY KNOLLS, CALIFORNIA HEIGHTS, LOS CERRITOS, WRIGLEY AND THE CITY OF SIGNAL HILL Your Weekly Community Newspaper october 4, 2013 Auto-title lender sues City of Long Beach for denying permit to operate at Wrigley ‘gateway’ Sean Belk/Signal Tribune Sean Belk/Signal Tribune The former Signal Hill police station located at 1800 E. Hill St. will be demolished in early 2014. However, because of the State’s dissolution of redevelopment, demolition of the library next door to make way for a new 15,000-squarefoot library has been postponed since $8.6 million in bond proceeds for construction are currently frozen. Signal Hill city officials vow to fight for RDA bond money to construct new library Sean Belk Staff Writer Signal Hill city officials said they aren’t giving up just yet on a long-awaited project to replace the City’s small 4,234-squarefoot public library with a new facility that would be more than three times the size of the old building. The State’s decision to dis- solve redevelopment nearly two years ago put a major wrench in the project since current legislation requires that proceeds from bonds issued by former redevelopment agencies (RDAs) after Dec. 31, 2010 be “defeasedâ€? and dispersed among surrounding taxing entities. For now, that means the $8.6 million in proceeds for bonds issued by the former Signal Hill RDA in March 2011 for construction of the new library are frozen since the bonds were issued after the State’s deadline. But, until the State officially demands the proceeds be defeased, Signal Hill city officials said they are holding on to the money in hopes that proposed legislation will resolve the Pennbrooke Financial Services, LLC, an auto-title-loan company, sought to lease an empty building at the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Pacific Avenue, considered a "gateway" to the Wrigley Village area, but the Long Beach City Council denied the company's conditional-use-permit application last year. Now, the business has taken legal action against the City. Sean Belk Staff Writer An auto-title-loan company has taken legal action against the City of Long Beach in an attempt to have the courts overturn the City Council’s decision last year that denied the firm’s request for a conditional-use-permit (CUP). The permit was needed for the business to move into a vacant building at the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Pacific Avenue, considered by residents a “gatewayâ€? to the Wrigley Village area. Georgia-based Pennbrooke Financial Services, LLC filed a lawsuit, called a writ of mandate, against the City after the Council unanimously voted (9-0) to turn down the business’s CUP application in November 2012. The Council’s decision was made on appeal after the Planning Commission came to a (3-3) tie vote on the permit. Both the City and the company are now expected to present oral arguments in Los Angeles County Superior Court before Judge James C. Chalfant at a hearing set for Oct. 22, according to attorneys. Opposition to the company moving to town was launched nearly two years ago by a group of Wrigley-neighborhood residents, who called such busisee LENDERS page 11 Post realignment, local police departments take a more active role in looking after offenders following their release see COUNCIL page 15 CJ Dablo Staff Writer CJ Dablo/Signal Tribune These prisoner handcuffs last month piled in a corner of the former courthouse in Long Beach were ready for inmates. A federal court panel last month extended the deadline to January 2014 for the State of California to reduce the prison population. California in 2011 adopted a realignment program that significantly changed how the State handles incarceration of low-level offenders by increasing the responsibilities of the local county jail systems and county probation departments. Weekly Weather Forecast Friday Saturday be complicated. 90° 93° ll out. Sunday 87° Mostly sunny Bright sunshine & very warm Bright sunshine Lo 60° Lo 60° Lo 59° This manage your solution. Monday 81° Mostly sunny Lo 60° It’s a new era for law-enforcement agencies statewide two years after California made sweeping modifications to the justice system through its realignment program, and in Long Beach and Signal Hill, police departments are adapting to the change. In October 2011, California initiated the realignment program under legislation called AB 109 in order to comply with a federal court order that aimed to reduce the state prison population by the end of this year. Proposing a comprehensive three-year plan, Gov. Jerry Brown had hoped that the court would allow more time for the State to comply with the order to reduce the number of its inmates in state prison facilities, but last month, a three-judge panel only extended the deadline to Jan. 27, 2014. About seven years ago, the number of state prison October 4 through October 8, 2013 Tuesday 74° Cloudy, then "5-"/5*$"7& sunny -0/(#&"$) $"  Lo 60° )PVST )PVST .PO'SJBNQN 4BUBNQN 4VO$MPTFE week’s Weekly Weather Forecast sponsored by: "5-"/5*$"7& -0/(#&"$) $"  )PVST )PVST .PO'SJBNQN inmates was estimated to be almost 200,000, and now the goal is to get the inmate population closer to 112,000, about 137.5 percent of the design capacity of the prison facilities, according to Dana Simas, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Simas also confirmed that, under the realignment program, only those offenders who are newly convicted after October 2011 of a non-serious, non-violent and non-sex offense will serve time in county jails. Once released, these lower-leveI offenders report to county probation instead of state parole. Ryan Fischer, a California State University, Long Beach associate professor of criminal justice, explained how county jail systems are now seeing a shift in their inmate populations. He said that, post-realignment, there see REALIGNMENT page 14

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