False Information and Innuendo Directed at Tom Beck
By Galen Patterson
Arcadia City Council convened on the evening of March 20 for a night of recognition and legislation.
The open session began with the customary blessing and Pledge of Allegiance, provided by Reverend Terry Keenan from the Santa Anita Church and Steve Sweeney U.S. Army, Retired. Sweeney was selected for the pledge because of Arcadia’s Hometown Heroes program, which finds ways to recognize and appreciate Arcadians who have served in the armed forces.
The council then honored Girl Scout Troop 4221 for the high school seniors that have earned the Girl Scout Gold Award this year. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the equivalent to the Boy Scouts Eagle Award and requires an extraordinary amount of volunteering and community impact. “They’ve done so much it would take a really long time to really share it all,” said Carla Peyton Thomas, one of the leaders of the troop.
The city then presented a proclamation to realtor Sylvia Ramos as an ambassador of the Red Cross. March is Red Cross Month, and the council recognized Ramos as the recipient on behalf of the organization.
City Clerk Gene Glasco was then presented with a certificate from the city for National Vietnam Veterans Day, which was signed into law on March 29, 2017 by President Donald Trump. Glasco is a Vietnam-era veteran and has worked hard to erect a Vietnam War monument in the city, which is nearing completion and is on the cusp of having lighting installed within the next few weeks.
Following the awards, the council then heard a presentation from city staff about National Fix-A-Leak Week, which is a program designed to raise awareness and urge Americans to fix leaks and conserve water. According to the public services department, leaks can waste around 1 trillion gallons of water per year nationwide, meaning 10,000 gallons per home per year. The public services department is offering free leak repair kits during regular business hours throughout the week and runs from March 19 –25.
Public comments came in the form of 14 speakers voicing their opinions on several matters. Nine of the speakers mentioned their stance against the drafted historic preservation ordinance. Several speakers leveled quizzical accusations at Councilman Tom Beck, citing questionable sources and misinformation in what appeared to be a concerted effort to attack the councilman, a connection that was recognized by one speaker.
Official legislation consisted of adopting resolutions for a cost of living increase, applicable to city employees represented by five different associations and in the amount of 2 percent for the first year and another 2 percent for the next. The first year also grants an additional $100 to medical benefit allowances.
The council also voted on the same increase for City Council and unrepresented confidential employees of the city, allowing the same 2 percent pay increase per year for the next two years, with the additional $100 medical benefit allowances for the first year.