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ST3533 - January 17_Layout 1 1/17/14 3:14 PM Page 1 SIGNAL Self-portrait, oil on canvas by Tiffany Aguila-Hicks T R See page 10 I B U N Honoring local artist Tiffany Aguila-Hicks E April 9, 1982–Dec. 26, 2013 SERVING BIXBY KNOLLS, CALIFORNIA HEIGHTS, LOS CERRITOS, WRIGLEY AND THE CITY OF SIGNAL HILL Vol. 35 No. 33 LB Mayor Bob Foster paints happy picture of city’s future in his final ‘State of the City’ Your Weekly Community Newspaper CJ Dablo Staff Writer Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster is counting down his final months and days before he leaves the center of the Council dais. At his Jan. 14 “State of the City” address, the last one he will make as the mayor, hundreds gathered at the Pacific Ballroom at the Long Beach Arena to hear Foster, as he delivered a speech marked by nostalgia, wit and an unapologetic tone as he recalled the last seven and a half years in office. His last day in office is scheduled for July 14 before a new mayor is elected to preside over the City Council. Foster defended many of the decisions he had made over his two terms in office and highlighted how the city had changed under his leadership. In his address, the mayor said he usually kept in mind a 10year-old child when facing an issue. He explained how it forced him to think of how the City’s actions could affect the life of that child. “I have always seen it as my obligation to improve the future: to leave this City better than I found it and enhance the opportunities for that 10-year-old child. I think I have done this in my seven and a half years as your mayor.” Long Beach primary election in April to be packed with candidates for mayor, city council and other offices Sean Belk Staff Writer CJ Dablo/Signal Tribune Counting down the final months of his tenure as Long Beach mayor, Bob Foster appears at the Long Beach Arena on Jan. 14 to deliver his last “State of the City” address. Foster’s final day in office will be July 14. Long Beach Council approves housing document, agrees to look into rent escrow account program see CITY page 11 January 17, 2014 Sean Belk Staff Writer A planning document for how housing will be shaped in Long Beach for the next seven years was signed off by the City Council at its Jan. 7 meeting, preparing the lengthy proposal for final State certification. After a nearly two-hour public hearing, the update to the City’s Draft Housing Element, which With less than three months left before the April 8 primary nominating election in Long Beach, a total of 34 candidates have qualified to run for various elected city offices in one of the most jam-packed elections in years. City Clerk Larry Herrera released a list of candidates who will be on the ballot, as of Wednesday, Jan. 15, which is the deadline for all candidates, including council incumbents, to file nomination papers. Also announced were qualified candidates for three available spots on both the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) Board of Education and the Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) Board of Trustees. Of the 12 candidates running for the public-education boards, three are incumbents. The race for mayor has the most hopefuls, with 10 candidates looking to take the reins from Mayor Bob Foster, who announced last year he is stepping down and doesn’t plan to seek re-election to a third term in a writein campaign. Among the qualified mayoral candidates are two current city councilmembers, termed-out 5th District Long Beach Councilmember Gerrie Schipske, who announced her bid last March, and Vice Mayor/1st District Councilmember Robert Garcia, who declared he will run for mayor instead of a second council term last July. Another mayoral candidate with experience as a Long Beach public official is attorney and current LBCCD Trustee Doug Otto, who first filed paperwork in April. see CANDIDATES page 11 covers a period from 2013 to 2021, was unanimously approved by the Council as presented by city staff. The California Department of Housing and Community Development Department is expected to provide an official finding of compliance to the City by May, according to city officials. The Council’s approval culminates several months of discussion between city staff, state offisee HOUSING page 12 Cory Bilicko/Signal Tribune As seen from atop the hill in Willow Springs Park in Long Beach, a vast plume of smoke covers a large portion of Los Angeles County as the Colby fire near Glendora, north of Los Angeles on the edge of the Angeles National Forest, continued to burn late Thursday morning. Smoke advisory issued as fire near Glendora burns Courtesy Housing Long Beach Affordable-housing advocates demonstrate in front of Long Beach City Hall on Jan. 7 before the City Council approves an update to the City’s Housing Element, a planning document that sets guidelines for housing for the next seven years. January 21, 2014 Weekly Weather Forecast Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday January 17 through 86° 80° 78° 80° Very sunny Mostly sunny Partly sunny Mostly sunny Lo 49° Lo 48° Lo 45° Lo 50° 82° Partly sunny, very warm Lo 51° This week’s Weekly Weather Forecast sponsored by: 4232 Atlantic Avenue, Long Beach 562.427.7977 As the Colby fire near Glendora sent smoke and ash throughout the region Thursday, Jan. 16, the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) issued a smoke advisory for portions of Los Angeles County, where air quality could reach the “unhealthy” range or higher. According to the advisory, all individuals are urged to exercise caution and avoid unnecessary outdoor activities in any area directly impacted by smoke, including those areas where residents can see or smell smoke. At press time, the Colby Fire, burning in the Angeles National Forest above Glendora, had been producing a large amount of smoke. Depending on fire and weather conditions, smoke impacts and “unhealthy” air quality are most likely to occur in portions of the east and south see SMOKE page 12

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