Anti-Power Plant Initiative Qualifies for March Ballot

The Power Plant Phase-Out Initiative would disallow power generation on the AES property on Harbor Drive.

The Power Plant Phase-Out Initiative—a measure designed to prevent AES from rebuilding its power plant on Harbor Drive—has qualified for the March ballot, power plant opponent Jim Light announced Wednesday evening in a blog post on Redondo Beach Patch.

The Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters faxed the city a certificate of sufficiency on Wednesday affirming that the initiative had enough signatures to qualify for the March ballot, Redondo Beach City Councilman Bill Brand told Patch.

"Over 9,500 signatures were gathered in just 40 days," Light wrote in his blog post. "Just under 6,000 valid Redondo voter signatures were required to make the ballot."

According to Brand, more than 7,000 of the signatures on the petitions were valid.

"We got more signatures in less time than any referendum or initiative that I know of that we've gone through," Brand said. "Clearly, the Redondo Beach residents don't want a new power plant on their waterfront, but now they'll be able to affirm it with a vote in March."

If passed, the initiative would rezone the AES property on Harbor Drive for up to 40 percent commercial and institutional uses. Parkland and open space would take up the rest of the property. Power generation would not be allowed. As part of the initiative, AES would have until 2022 to demolish the existing plant.

The company's contract to provide power expires in 2018.

Opponents of the initiative call the zoning changes a "taking" and say that it would make the city vulnerable to lawsuits.

The current AES Redondo Beach—a natural gas plant that uses ocean water to cool superheated steam produced by the boilers to spin the turbines and produce electricity—must be retrofitted, retired or receive a special exemption to continue to use once-through cooling by 2020.

AES officials say the proposed new plant will be smaller, run cleaner and provide power when renewable resources are offline. Opponents say a new plant would run more often and emit more harmful particulate pollution, as well as continue to depress property values.

Light, Brand and members of the NoPowerPlant.com group were the driving forces behind the initiative.

Wolfman October 11, 2012 at 01:19 AM
The direction the world is going I don't think any of us will be around in 10 years
sheri patterson October 11, 2012 at 01:33 AM
This is a GREAT DAY for Redondo Beach residents. I'm so proud of the hundreds of local residents that worked so hard during the summer to make this happen-- and grateful to the thousand of residents that signed and many families that donated. What a great group of hard-working citizens!
Dale Smith October 11, 2012 at 01:58 AM
Does Jim Light own the PATCH? They sure seem to cater to him and his directive
DR October 11, 2012 at 02:43 AM
For those who are dismayed by this initiative, feel free to visit www.facebook.com/revitalizeredondo or www.revitalizeredondo.org
Vincent Tipaldo October 11, 2012 at 04:45 AM
You are kidding right? That Facebook page was launched in April 2012 and has only SIX "likes." Face it - the power plant WILL BE retired and the waterfront will finally have the life it deserves.
Nicole Mooradian (Editor) October 11, 2012 at 05:44 AM
Hi Dale, Redondo Beach Patch operates independently of Jim Light; however, whether you agree or disagree with the initiative, it qualifying for the ballot is certainly newsworthy. Jim Light is a blogger on Patch, which means we don't necessarily endorse what he writes—we simply provide a platform. I encourage you to blog on Patch about the issue, too. I welcome a diversity of opinions. You can post a blog by visiting this link: http://redondobeach.patch.com/blog/apply
Bruce Szeles October 11, 2012 at 12:34 PM
Why would any resident oppose putting this issue to a vote? Seems like this site is opposed to residents voting on issues that matter to them and the future of RB. This "revitalize" site seems to be saying "only our view is fact". This reminds me of the yes on measure G team all over again. No stones to post their own name just like DR.
L. Campeggi October 11, 2012 at 02:43 PM
Bruce, you're right on the money about the "revitalize redondo" few lacking the honesty to identify who they are. To follow or give credibility to "no names" on such a serious and monumental matter is synonymous with the "blind leading the inept." Redondo Beach residents are proving not to be that easily led or that easily mis-led. Meanwhile, the latest telephone survey being conducted right now (sponsored by whom? AES?), labels supporters of No Power Plant as "environmental extremists." 7,400+ registered Redondo Beach voters, verified by the county, are sure to not take kindly to being called "extremists" for any reason! And by the way, not wanting an increase in dangerous particulate pollution from an unneccesary power plant in our town is not "extreme." It's common sense and exactly what the City of Redondo Beach should be promoting as a Vitality City for better health! Name calling, bullying, threats, misinformation, fear-mongering, propaganda; the lengths to which those who want a new, higher-polluting power plant here will go is sickening. They'll spend unGodly sums of money to protect their profits for their Virginia-based, Fortune 200 company, and leave the pollution here. We say Power to the People. Come join the No Power Plant team, volunteers and supporters at our next fund raiser, Tuesday, October 23, 2012 at The Ocean Bar, 1301 Manhattan Avenue in Hermosa Beach from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. www.facebook.com/nopowerplant www.nopowerplant.com
sheri patterson October 11, 2012 at 07:49 PM
Who thinks revitalizing Redondo Beach with a higher polluting and unnecessary power plant is revitalization? What a deceptive site.
Jim Light October 11, 2012 at 09:44 PM
7,468 signatures were validated. We needed 5,974 to qualify. The petition had the support of more voters than any elected official in Redondo
Kent McCaman, Captain of Industry October 12, 2012 at 10:29 PM
Hmm... "Jim Light, Mayor of Redondo Beach" would probably be a guy with community support.
sheri patterson October 12, 2012 at 10:46 PM
If only our elected officials were as bright, committed, thoughtful, honest and principled as Jim Light--- Redondo Beach residents have suffered from the poor planning, lack of vision and councilman forgetfulness (in who they represent) for far too long. One bright moment in Redondo is that local activism is alive and well and POWERFUL. What a difference a community can make when residents start tuning in and paying attention (and volunteering!). I hope we begin to see the tide change in who we send to office in Redondo Beach. It's time to bring back ethics and a desire to be of service as the prerequisites for running for office. I'm very grateful Jim has agreed to run in District 1. What a breath of fresh air that will be.
Jim Light October 13, 2012 at 12:07 AM
Not as cool as "Captain of Industry" ; )
Diane Naletich October 15, 2012 at 03:00 AM
Congratulations on your hard work!! This is a victory so far.
Melanie L Cohen October 15, 2012 at 03:49 AM
Thanks, Diane. But this is only the halfway point. We still need folks to turn out and vote for the initiative . And Lezlie C and SheriP , I totally agree with your statements. I received the "phone survey" . What a bunch of malarky. Believe me, I would not be out on the street talking to folks daily, if our City Council (except for Bill Brand) were doing their jobs. We need to rezone the property and change the course of RB. Bring it to its new destiny. A wonderful place to visit for residents and tourists alike. Thanks again to all those who brought this initiative to ballot. See you at the City Council meeting Tuesday evening to make sure the council doesn't try and stop the progress of the March 2013 vote
Mary Ruth Ewell October 17, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Any citizen who would want the AES Redondo Money Plant to continue to increase particulate pollution are simply ignorant of the facts of the 7 State Commissions that came out to testify before the Redondo City Council over the last year. I realize in canvassing that not all my neighbors are willing to use critical thinking in reviewing these facts, which is a matter of doing your homework. I was especially dismayed when Beach Cities Health District did not do their fact-finding homework ( a one page, double sided summary was provided for them last year and earlier this year) and wrote off assessing the health problem that AES pollution is causing as a "political issue", led by one Doctor, in particular, speaking out of his area of expertise. And they are paid to represent & protect the citizenry from health hazards. Pleeze! Promote Vitality Cities and ignore the elephant in the living room...of 6500 Redondo students and more senior citizens than they SAY they are serving? Mary Ewell


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