Cities should combine to save money, expert says

The leader of the San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership says cities should stick together, literally.

Ron Wood, the partnership’s CEO, said plenty of area cities could save cash by combining.

He said Covina and West Covina could become more efficient by becoming one municipality. So could Pasadena and South Pasadena. He also mentioned Temple City and Arcadia and El Monte and South El Monte.

The idea has been floating around for years, but he wonders if economic hard times will make people take it more seriously.

“I think it’s one of the answers to economic problems in the San Gabriel Valley,” he said. “It’s an opportunity for people to take a fresh look.”

He doubts politicians could set aside their egos to accomplish such a huge change, but he says people are more receptive to the idea than in the past.

“Sometimes crisis brings about changes in people,” he said.

Full disclosure: Wood used to be the publisher here at the Tribune.