Alva closer to chief’s seat

So last night I reported the Baldwin Park City Council unanimously named El Monte police Lt. Ken Alva as their new police chief. Well, that was only half true, according to city officials.

While Mayor Manuel Lozano said Wednesday the council did appoint Alva, there are still several hoops Alva has to jump through before a final contract is approved. Technically, Alva still needs to clear his background check, he still has to negotiate a contract and that contract still needs to go before the council for final approval.

I apologize for any confusion that may have caused. I should have caught that, but I’m clarifying it now and it will be clear in the story that will appear in Friday’s paper.

So yes, Alva was chosen, but no, he’s not the current police chief. Baldwin Park’s Chief Executive Officer Vijay Singhal said it’ll be a few weeks before everything finalized, so long as things go smoothly.

Alva tells me he hasn’t even given notice yet at El Monte. But I can assure you, that hasn’t stopped his peers at EMPD and his supporters in Baldwin Park City Hall from anticipating his transition.

Translation: he’s a shoe-in with some baby steps along the way.

Reporting thus far tells me Alva has quite a support system both in and out of El Monte. More on that in this weekend’s profile, which should run on Sunday.

Roski guarantees stadium

Reporter Jennifer McLain is on her way back to the office from a Downtown press conference about Ed Roski’s plans to devleop a stadium in Industry.

Here’s a short update that just got posted on our Web site:

LOS ANGELES — Billionaire land developer Ed Roski unveiled his plan Thursday to build an $800 million NFL stadium in the City of Industry.
Although there is no professional football team on the horizion for the region, Roski said it is a certainty the stadium will be built.

Speculation about teams moving to the area centered on the Bufflao Bills, the Minnesota Vikings or the Oakland Raiders. Neither team owners nor NFL officials were immediately available for comment. NFL officials did not participate in the press conference.

Roski said he expects construction on the site to start by the fourth quarter of this year.

I’m sure Jennifer will have more insight later.

Pins and needles and lewd acts?

You can say bye bye to CP Acupuncture Health Center in Covina. Amanda Baumfeld reports the City Council revoked the clinic’s business license Tuesday after police found out its owner was running “an adult service operation” there.

The center opened on Dec. 1 as an acupuncture practice, but officials to Baumfeld the business housed massage tables, large bottles of hand lotion and oils. Doesn’t sound very acupuncture-ish to me. Here’s more from Baumfeld’s story:

Police began investigating the center at 1259 San Bernardino Road in February after receiving complaints of late night male clientele from residents who live across the street, according to Lt. Tim Doonan.


The investigation resulted in the arrest of Shui Mai Liu, 52, of Monterey Park on Feb. 13 who was booked on suspicion of soliciting a lewd act.

Liu has since been charged with one count of prostitution and her case is being handled by the Los Angeles County District Attorney, according to Doonan. Pang will not be charged and he currently does not have any other businesses in the city, Doonan said.

Hey, there’s always Craigslist, right?

There’s a new sheriff in town

Surprise, surprise folks. Baldwin Park’s got a new police chief. I just got off the phone with Mayor Manuel Lozano who told me the City Council voted unanimously in closed session tonight to appoint ….. wait, drum roll please ……. El Monte Police Lt. Ken Alva as the new police chief.

Alva will likely start contract negotiations with Chief Executive Officer Vijay Singhal next week, Lozano said.

The announcement came pretty unexpectedly, considering Lozano told me earlier today that the closed session item listed as *Police chief appointment* on today’s agenda was just a “status update” on where the city was in terms of background checks with its top two candidates.

I should add that closed session item was added to the agenda Tuesday, one day before the meeting. Well, officials say Suisun City Police Chief Ed Dadisho – who, was also up for the job – submitted a letter to Singhal today asking to withdraw his candidacy “for personal reasons.”

Regardless, looks like Alva is in, as long as nothing egregious turns up on his background check of course.

We’ve got a brief about the issue running in Thursday’s paper, and we’ll have a full follow-up Friday, along with – hopefully – a profile on Alva for the weekend.


I just got this email, which confirms that the plans are in the works to bringing this stadium to Industry. Check out the Web site link. It gives the location, the timeline, and what the stadium will look like:

In advance of tomorrows 10am news conference at Staples Center (see below advisory), the website for Los Angeles Stadium has gone live.

Please visit this websitefor a sneak peak at stadium renderings, location and design elements. As you can see, Mr. Roskis plan is viable and will impact/benefit the entire LA region.

Hernandez apologizes for getting angry at WC police

This just in from reporter Dan Abendschein:

Months after Councilman Roger Hernandez filed a complaint against the West Covina police officers who came to confront him at his house about an alleged domestic dispute, he apologized for getting angry at the officers.

Said Hernandez at Tuesday’s night meeting: “I owe the officers an apology, because I was angry.”

He didn’t stop there though… he continued to insinuate the whole incident was tied to the November election, saying he was the target of a “political and dirty situation” involving a political group with ties to Mike Touhey.

As several people noted in phone calls/emails today, this was the first time Hernandez apologized for the incident, which took place in October. At the time, Hernandez suggested the noise could have come from a neighbor’s condo. Read full story here.

The whole thing came up in a flare-up about the gun ordinance that Hernandez claims targets retired police officers, who will no longer be allowed to carry weapons to city hall. The ordinance also directs that all other citizens must also leave their guns at home, and appears to be a pre-cursor to the arrival of metal detectors in city hall.

Councilman Touhey brought up the incident at Hernandez’s home, calling him hypocritical for being concerned about officers in the gun ordinance, but not caring about the officers he filed a complaint about in November.

Hernandez also accused his fellow council members who voted for the ordinance (not Touhey, who voted against) of having a political motivation, since one of the retired officers, Fred Sykes, ran for council as an ally of Hernandez.

Councilwoman Sanderson then interrupted Hernandez, demanding that he not “ascribe any motives” to her for how she voted.

Watch the video here It is about of the way through, during a discussion on item D5-E.

To paraphrase Rodney King: “Can’t this council just get along?”


Maybe those tips were right. I just saw this in my inbox:

LOS ANGELES Tomorrow Edward P. Roski, Jr., CEO of Majestic Realty Co. and the commercial developer behind the Staples Center and part owner of the Los Angeles Kings and Los Angeles Lakers will brief the media and make a major news announcement regarding the National Football League (NFL) and Los Angeles.

That either means, A.) A team is coming to Industry, or B.) The proposition flopped.

Any takers?

More cuts on the way?



As if the water supply outlook in So Cal wasn’t bleak enough. At least one water insider told me that the writing is on the wall and that water supply to Southern California will be cut even more because of the enviornmental impacts pumping the Delta has had on salmon.

Today, the Associated Press reported that U.S. District Judge Oliver Wanger said a federal report supporting increased water exports was scientifically inadequate.

Department of Water Resources Director Lester Snow said the agency is unsure how Wanger’s ruling will effect water deliveries, but said it was “further evidence that the delta is teetering on the brink of collapse.”

Holy crap. Are you packing your bags yet?

Here’s the whole story:

Judge: Feds failed to study how delta pumping affects salmon
By PAUL ELIAS Associated Press Writer
Article Launched: 04/16/2008 02:46:14 PM PDT

SAN FRANCISCOA federal judge on Wednesday ruled that water regulators failed to consider the effects of global warming and other environmental issues related to the decline of California salmon populations when they approved increased pumping from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

U.S. District Judge Oliver Wanger said a 2004 study prepared by federal regulators to support the increased water exports was scientifically inadequate.

“There is no analysis of adverse effect on critical habitat,” Wanger wrote about winter-run chinook salmon.

The judge also ruled that there was a “total failure to address, adequately explain, and analyze the effects of global climate change on the species.”

The study had concluded that more water could be taken from California’s Central Valley to quench residential and agricultural thirsts throughout the state. The new pumping plan was already on hold because of a similar ruling the judge made about the Bush administration’s failure to address its effects on a threatened fish species called the Delta smelt.

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the National Marine Fisheries Service, the agencies that prepared the study at issue, plan to submit a new study by the end of the year, said NMFS spokesman Jim Milbury.

“I’m sure they will look at the judge’s opinion in developing it,” he said.

Wanger scheduled a hearing April 25 to begin determining how the delta should be managed until the new study is published.

Department of Water Resources Director Lester Snow said the agency is unsure how Wanger’s ruling will effect water deliveries, but said it was “further evidence that the delta is teetering on the brink of collapse.”

A group of environmentalists, fishermen and American Indians sued the two federal agencies in 2005.

“This is a historic decision,” said Mike Sherwood, an Earthjustice lawyer who represents the environmentalists. “It may well be the turning point to reverse the decline toward extinction of these fish.”

Some scientists have pointed to increased water exports from the delta as one possible cause for an unprecedented decline in the number of chinook salmon returning to spawn in the Sacramento River and its tributaries last fall. Other researchers blame changing ocean conditions for the decline.

Earlier this month, federal fishery regulators voted to ban salmon fishing along the California coast and most of Oregon to protect California’s shrinking salmon stocks.

Term limit talk on the agenda

The Rosemead City Council is going to discuss term limits at its meeting on Tuesday. The discussion is at the request of Councilwoman Polly Low. Apparently, the background information that the council members will be provided for the meeting isn’t too lengthy. It will just discuss what the procedures are for introducing term limits (take it to the voters), what other cities have term limits, (i.e. Arcadia and Alhambra), and what the options are in having term limits (lenghts of terms, etc.)

I don’t know exactly what prompted this, but I’m going to assume it has something to do with the length of time that Rosemead Council members Margaret Clark and Gary Taylor have spent on the council (a combined 51 years).