CEMEX & Bell vs. The People
The Vote – City of Bell Approves Settlement with CEMEX
Councilmember Alicia Romero – Motion to approve settlement with CEMEX
Councilmember Ali Saleh – 2nd motion to approve settlement with CEMEX
Mayor Fidencio Gallardo – Voted to approve settlement with CEMEX
Vice Mayor Ana Maria Quintana – Voted against settlement with CEMEX
Councilmember Nestor Valencia – Voted against settlement with CEMEX
The Bell & CEMEX Settlement:
We heard testimony that CEMEX can make up to $70 million a year at the site, so when the City of Bell settles for $400k a year, we know they will not prioritize utilizing these funds to mitigate the impacts on our health from this project. This is nowhere near enough money to protect our health from the impacts at the CEMEX site. This feels like a payoff, selling out our communities because the City of Bell is fiscally vulnerable after years of city mismanagement and malfeasance.
As the City of Bell settles, we prepare to continue the fight in the courtroom. Keep an eye out for updates on our lawsuit against the City of Bell and CEMEX.
The Real Disappointment of the Night:
Unfortunately, at this point many of us expect elected officials to want to do wrong by us, so we fight. At this point we expect companies to target our communities as a dumping ground, so we fight. At this point we expect government agencies who are supposed to protect us to fail, so we fight.
What is heartbreaking is when we witness residents come out to a public meeting to say they don’t care that we are being contaminated, say we should be used to it, say we should accept more pollution since our communities are already filled with it, say they don’t care about the surrounding communities of Bell Gardens, Maywood, Commerce and East LA that will be impacted as long as Bell gets some money, all seemingly to support their preferred political friend or family member. We received communications that residents were being intentionally misinformed and told lies about East Yard and our motivations by Bell Councilmembers. Unfortunately, at this point many of us expect elected officials to mislead members of our communities for their own political gain and to provide cover when they are harming our communities, SO WE FIGHT!!!
We build power in our communities because we recognize the best leader is someone who will follow the lead of our communities. Someone who will prioritize our health and well being.