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50 years ago

West­mor­land City Coun­cil by a 3-2 vote last night ousted Tony Belew Jr. as mayor and city po­lice com­mis­sioner, and in the same ac­tion named Tommy Gal­lardo to take over the two posts. Coun­cil­men An­thony Ro­driguez Jr., Joe Reyna and Gal­lardo voted for Belew’s re­moval, while Belew and Howard Dick­er­son cast neg­a­tive votes.

The dra­matic and sud­den ac­tion by the coun­cil came af­ter Belew was sharply crit­i­cized by three of his fel­low coun­cil­men for fail­ing to no­tify them re­gard­ing the al­leged res­ig­na­tion of Po­lice Chief Philip Co­cova on Jan. 23.

Belew, who ad­mit­ted he might have “slipped” in not no­ti­fy­ing each coun­cil­man of the res­ig­na­tion, later said he was “sur­prised” at the coun­cil’s dras­tic ac­tion in strip­ping him of the ti­tles of mayor and po­lice com­mis­sioner.

40 years ago

CALIPATRIA — About 150 stu­dents staged a 20-minute walk­out at Calipatria High School this morn­ing in a show of sup­port for Prin­ci­pal Miyoshia Ikeda.

It was the lat­est de­vel­op­ment in a com­mu­ni­ty­wide con­tro­versy that has erupted over a school board ac­tion Thurs­day to not re­new Ikeda’s con­tract as prin­ci­pal next year. The ac­tion was taken in a spe­cially called ex­ec­u­tive ses­sion.

Ikeda is a tenured teacher and can re­main in that ca­pac­ity at the school. His fir­ing from the prin­ci­pal po­si­tion takes ef­fect at the end of the cur­rent school year.

The stu­dent ac­tion came af­ter 98 per­sons from the com­mu­nity jammed a school board meet­ing Mon­day night in sup­port of re­tain­ing Ikeda as prin­ci­pal.

The stu­dents met in the mid­dle of cam­pus about 9:30 a.m., then marched to District Su­per­in­ten­dent Ed­die Ikard’s of­fice. The youths chanted slo­gans such as “We want Ikeda” and car­ried posters. One poster stated “If Ikeda goes, Ikard goes too.” An­other said “Fair­ness to Ikeda.”

30 years ago

Con­struc­tion of a pipe­line to ship water from Im­pe­rial County to San Diego County has long been viewed as a pipe dream be­cause of the ex­pense, but Im­pe­rial Ir­ri­ga­tion District of­fi­cials are now look­ing to an ex­ist­ing Mex­i­can aque­duct to solve the water prob­lems of both coun­ties.

IID of­fi­cials Wed­nes­day met with rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Mex­i­can gov­ern­ment to dis­cuss the fea­si­bil­ity of ship­ping IID water to the San Diego County Water Au­thor­ity by con­nect­ing the two agen­cies’ sys­tems to a pipe­line that presently trans­ports Colorado River water from Mex­i­cali to Ti­juana, said IID Pres­i­dent Tony Gal­le­gos.

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