La Puente : Voters May Decide on Plan

A citizens group opposed to a major urban renewal project on Tuesday presented city officials with a petition that could place the issue before voters in a special election this fall.

Bernard Acton, who formed the group Referendum Against Governmental Eviction, said the petition was signed by 1,613 people opposed to the controversial redevelopment plan, approved by the City Council last month. The plan would aid development in blighted areas through city-sponsored tax incentives.

Critics fear the project will lead to relocation of several of the nearly 40 homeowners and 200 businesses located within the 93-acre project area.

City Manager Robert G. Gutierrez said the city has 30 days to certify the signatures. At least 998 of the 1,613 signatures must belong to registered voters in La Puente, Gutierrez said.

If the petition is validated, he said the council must either repeal the redevelopment ordinance or call for an election. A special election could be held no earlier than mid-November, Gutierrez said.

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