WHITTIER – A city plan calls for a new $35 million police station to be financed from money set aside for a new library and from reserves of Redevelopment Agency and the water utility. Whittier council members approved City Manager Steve Helvey’s plan late Tuesday, calling it creative but possible. “It’s a very detailed plan and it will take a tight budget,” Councilman Bob Henderson said. “I think it’s very doable.” The new 45,000-square-foot station is expected to be completed in 56 months. It will be built at Penn Street and Washington Avenue to the west of City Hall. A sign already is up at the site, Mayor Cathy Warner said. “It’s on the countdown,” she said. The present station is 20,000 square feet. It was built in 1955 when the city had 20 officers and some support staff. It now has 93 officers and 79 support personnel. The City Council also authorized Helvey to begin hiring firms to start the design process. However, he is limited to spending $50,000. Any contract above that will have to go to the City Council for approval. That will allow Helvey to hire a geotechnical firm to analyze the soil and ensure the area meets state earthquake safety standards for public safety buildings. To fund the project, $12.2 million will come from the city selling water rights to its utility authority that provides water service for the west side of Whittier. “The water rights belong to the whole city,” said Assistant City Manger Nancy Mendez, but only the old part is serviced. “One way to allow all residents to benefit equally is to sell \ to the utility.” About $6.2 million of the water rights money already had been set aside for a new library. The city also had set aside another $5 million in general fund money for a new library. Both amounts will be used for the new police station. That money is no longer needed for a new library because plans for it were stymied when state voters rejected a bond issue in June, officials said. The police station plan also projects that about $5 million will come from the sale of the Alpha Beta site in the Uptown area. That was where the new library was supposed to be built. The Redevelopment Agency also provide about $8 million. The agency will pay back about $3.6 million in loans owed to the city and provide another $4.5 million. In order to do the latter, the city will have to revamp its redevelopment plan to include a new police headquarters. Two other sources of funding are $3.2 million in two special general fund reserves that have never been used and $1.4 million in the city’s asset seizure fund. “We’ve had a public safety reserve and contingency reserve for many years that we’ve never touched,” Mendez said. Helvey also plans to use about $215,000 in general fund savings from this fiscal year. firstname.lastname@example.org (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3022 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!