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Fullerton 2013: a year in review

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Fullerton once again had many notable moments in 2013.

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January brought a permanent chief of police to Fullerton when the city council voted 5-0 to make Acting Chief of Police Dan Hughes its permanent chief. Hughes became the city's permanent chief after 17 months, when Chief Michael Sellers took a leave of absence after the Kelly Thomas death and retired during the leave.

The county of Orange also voted Jan. 16 to enter into an escrow agreement to purchase land for a homeless shelter in Fullerton.

February also brought a city council vote to issue judgment obligation bonds to replenish the city's liability insurance fund, pending court approval.

March became a perilous time for Fullerton Airport, as the FAA threatened to close the tower at the airport.

April brought a closure of the Hunt Branch Library. The library was opened in 1962 and was allegedly to be closed temporarily due to library staff being afraid of a sizable homeless encampment growing behind the library.

Fullerton City Council voted in May to increase water rates an average of 19 cents per household, which began July 1.

June had several events for Fullerton, which included the city council rejecting an agreement with the County of Orange to operate a homeless shelter. The homeless were also evicted from the camp set up behind Hunt Library. City hall also had a major flood during the month.

Fullerton also signed an historic Memorandum of Understanding in June with KOTRA, a non-profit governmental agency of the Republic of Korea, to promote Fullerton as a business destination for Korea.

Safe and Sane Fireworks were allowed in Fullerton for the 4th of July for the first time in over 20 years.

Fullerton College began to celebrate its 100th anniversary in August with various events.

Fullerton Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva made news with legislation she introduced, AB 912, which was subsequently vetoed. The legislation would have required insurance companies to pay for fertility preservation for cancer patients.

October brought another newsworthy month for Fullerton, which included the opening of a sensory garden at Commonwealth Elementary School. Other newsworthy events for the month included Fullerton City Council leasing the Hunt Branch Library to Grace Ministries International and also an 8-car crash in front of St. Jude Medical Center that tied up traffic for hours.

November brought the city's annual Veteran's Day parade and celebration to the forefront.

December began the Kelly Thomas trial, with former Fullerton police officers Manuel Ramos and Jay Cicinelli standing trial for the death of Kelly Thomas, a homeless, schizophrenic man. The trial is expected to end next month.

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