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Downtown vandalism is hot topic

April 19, 2001|By RUDY YNIGUEZ, Staff Writer

How to deal with the ongoing vandalism in downtown of El Centro was the main topic of discussion before the El Centro City Council on Wednesday.

Councilman Larry Grogan said the acts of vandalism are those of cowards who, under the protective cover of night, do their damage. He said the vandalism says little for the person's manhood.

Councilman Jack Dunnam said the amount of vandalism is tremendous, including broken windows and graffiti.

He urged the city undertake a concerted effort to stop the damage.

Added Mayor Cheryl Walker: "We simply cannot sit by and passively allow this to continue." She suggested a telephone tip line be opened and rewards be offered.

Police Chief Ray Loera said a plan is being developed to deal with the problem.

Marty Tracey, city economic development specialist, said the key to the situation is enforcement and ensuring those responsible for the vandalism know they will get in trouble when caught.


In other business, the council:

l received an update on the efforts of the historical site commission. The council was told the proposed plan to designate certain privately owned buildings as historic would not subject them to state or federal limitations. Rather, the historic designation would be a city designation only.

l approved a $3.14 million agreement with the county for resurfacing of city/county streets and roads. The city will fund its portion of the project with $789,000 in federal funds, $272,881 in state funds and $2.08 million in local transportation authority funds. Ten miles of city streets will be affected.

l approved submitting a $503,746 federal grant request to purchase firefighting vehicles and equipment. The city will supply a 10 percent match in funds.

l approved the local transportation authority's five-year plan. LTA revenues are provided by a .5 percent sales tax increase authorized by voters in 1989 for 20 years.

l heard a report on the tentative schedule for the city recreation department's summer activities.

Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.

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