A citizens group has gathered 3,012 valid signatures, 800 more than necessary, to force a referendum on expanding redevelopment zones in Pico Rivera. The group formed after the City Council in July voted to double the size of the city's redevelopment zones to include about 30% of this 8.5-square-mile city.
Numerous residents and business owners opposed the expanded zones, saying they feared the city will use its condemnation power during redevelopment to force them to move. They were not placated when council members pledged not to use condemnation power on owner-occupied houses in new portions of the redevelopment areas.
In order to qualify the issue for a referendum, activists had to gather signatures from 10% of the city's registered voters.
City Clerk Thelma Kail said she will present the verified petition to council members at their Oct. 7 meeting.