Big announcements in Baldwin Park

I reported briefly in an earlier blog post that Baldwin Park City Council members would be meeting in closed session Wednesday to discuss details of the police chiefs position. Well, residents can also expect an official announcement in open session about Edward Lopez retirement, according to Mayor Manuel Lozano.

He said Lopez turned in his resignation and retirement paperwork on THURSDAY – interesting since council members last week didnt seem to know what was going on with Lopez departure. I guess Lopez turned in his paperwork to the citys CEO…so it must have taken a few days for the information to trickle downward, right?

Regardless, the council will publicize the retirement – or termination depending on what side of the camp your on and what you believe – Wednesday night. Lozano said he also hoped the council would be able to finalize an interim at that time. But I think we all know who thatll be based on that little internal memo from a few days ago.

Just a few other tidbits on the matter worth mentioning: I had a lengthy conversation with Councilwoman Marlen Garcia on the whole issue today, and she had some not-so flattering comments about the police associations leadership – whom, along with Councilman Ricardo Pacheco – are accusing the council of secretly firing Lopez two weeks ago.

Among the several things she said, Garcia called the leaderships association greedy, and accused them of using this situation as leverage to get more pay. As you might recall, the association and the city debated for months over contract negotiations, and in the end, police said they still were not happy with the final contract. Garcia also said that during those negotiations, police asked the council to shut down the citys teen center and other community facilities in order to give them the raises they wanted.

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