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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

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Growing Number of Retired Santa Monica Educators Earn Six-Figure Annual Pensions
March 20, 2018 -- More than 150 retirees from Santa Monica College and local public schools earned at least $100,000 each in pensions last years, according to recently released data from a public-spending watchdog group.

Santa Monica Rent Board to Discuss Eliminating Surcharges for Existing Tenants
March 20, 2018 -- After removing surcharges passed on from landlords to new tenants, Santa Monica’s Rent Control Board on Thursday will discuss doing the same for the remaining renters in the city’s more than 25,000 controlled units.

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Santa Monica College Emeritus Writing Students to Showcase Their Work
Emeritus Chronicles cover art March 20, 2018 -- Writers in the Santa Monica College (SMC) Emeritus Program bring a long lifetime of experience to their work and often a lifetime waiting to to see it in print. Their wait is over. Next month students in four Emeritus classes will read from the stories and poems included in the 2018 edition of the annual literary journal “Emeritus Chronicles.”

EXTRA Santa Monica-Malibu School Board Closer to Deciding Malibu Split
March 20, 2018 -- The Santa Monica-Malibu School Board is edging closer to a decision on Malibu’s campaign to split from the District, with a new report detailing the "significantly" high cost to Malibu of equalizing the loss of funding to the Santa Monica-based district.

Santa Monica Hires New City Architect
March 19, 2018 -- The architect in charge of managing a $172 million capital improvement project for the Los Angeles Zoo has been hired as Santa Monica's new City Architect, City officials announced last week.

Art @ Tongva Series 'Wonder Room' Kicks Off Art @ Tongva Season in Santa Monica
March 19, 2018 -- For an evening next week, Santa Monica's Tongva Park's intimate spaces will be filled with surprising performances as the City kicks off the 2018 Art @ Tongva season with the fifth annual Wonder Room.

Total Departures at Santa Monica Airport Hold Steady, As Jet Traffic Nosedives
March 16, 2018 -- Last month, the number of jet flights from Santa Monica Airport took a nosedive compared to February of last year, but the total number of departures held steady, according to the latest statistics released by the City.

Santa Monica Prepares for LA Marathon Sunday
March 16, 2017 -- On Sunday some 20,000 runners, along with spectators, family and friends, will descend on Santa Monica for the final three miles of the LA Marathon.To help residents and spectators navigate the street closures and find alternate ways to get near the finish line, the City is providing maps, schedules and handy tips on its website.

Annual Benefit Concert Raises $86,000 for Santa Monica, Malibu Schools
Rick Springfield March, 16, 2018 -- The Santa Monica-Malibu Education Foundation’s annual benefit concert this month starring Grammy winner and early 1980s rock star Rick Springfield raised more than $86,000 for local public schools, Foundation officials said Friday. Proceeds will support arts programs at all District schools next year.

Santa Monica Officials Explore Ways to Get People Downtown Without Cars
March 15, 2018 -- Santa Monica's ongoing battle to balance parking needs Downtown and wean motorists from its congested streets took another turn last week, with the City Council directing staff to explore new strategies at the urging of Downtown officials.

Santa Monica-Malibu Students Hold Demonstrations in Wake of Florida School Shootings
March 15, 2018 -- Thousands of students at Santa Monica and Malibu public schools walked out of classes on Wednesday as part of a District-sanctioned demonstration to show solidarity with students at a Florida high school where a mass shooting claimed 17 lives one month earlier.

Santa Monica Police to Conduct DUI Checkpoint Friday
March 15, 2018 -- Santa Monica police will conduct a DUI checkpoint Friday at a time when California is experiencing a "disturbing" increase in crashes involving drug-impaired drivers, police said.

Suspects in Santa Monica's Most Violent Crimes Were Repeat Offenders
Crime scene tape March 13, 2018 -- At least six of the suspects charged with some of the most violent crimes in Santa Monica since the beginning of 2017 were either felons or on probation, fueling concerns that a state law to alleviate overcrowding in state prisons could be a contributing factor.

Efforts to Temporarily Halt Santa Monica's Home-Sharing Law Fails in Court
March 14, 2018 -- Santa Monica can continue enforcing its "home-sharing" law after a U.S. District Court last week denied a motion by AirBnB and HomeAway for a preliminary injunction.

Airport Art Walk to Feature Works By Santa Monica College Ceramics Students
March 14, 2018 -- Santa Monica College's ceramics students will showcase their works during the 12th Annual Santa Monica Airport ArtWalk a week from this Saturday.

EXTRA Santa Monica Could Be Testing Ground for Tesla's First Supercharger Restaurant
March 13, 2018 -- Tesla's first combination restaurant and supercharger station, teased by Elon Musk in a Tweet in January, is being proposed for Santa Monica's auto row, according to plans submitted to the City Tuesday.

Santa Monica Taps Highly Touted Folsom Police Chief for Top Post
Police Chief Cynthia Renaud March 13, 2018 -- Folsom Police Chief Cynthia Renaud -- who is credited with helping lower property and violent crime in the Sacramento County city -- has been tapped to head the Santa Monica Police Department, City officials announced Tuesday. She will start the job at the end of April with an annual salary of $265,440, officials said.

President Trump to Touch Down in Santa Monica Tuesday Afternoon
President Trump March 12, 2018 -- President Donald Trump will make a pit stop at Santa Monica Airport Tuesday afternoon on his first trip to California as president, City officials confirmed. The president will arrive by helicopter from LAX between 2:45 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. before a motorcade whisks him to an evening fundraiser in Beverly Hills, officials told The Lookout.

New Santa Monica Homeowners Among Hardest Hit By Federal Tax Code
March 12, 2018 -- New homeowners in Santa Monica are estimated to be among the hardest hit in California by a reduction in mortgage deductions in the new federal tax code, according to an organization tracking the ups and downs of the law.

Suspect Charged in Santa Monica Shooting Last Month
March 12, 2018 -- Santa Monica police detectives filed attempted murder charges on Friday against a suspect involved in a shooting Downtown last month.

Man Who Jumped from Santa Monica Pier Identified, Ruled a Suicide
March 12, 2018 -- The body of a man who jumped into the ocean from the Santa Monica pier shortly before midnight Friday has been identified in an incident police have determined was a suicide.

Interim Police Chief Says Major Crimes in Santa Monica Up but Low by Historic Standards
March 9, 2018 -- With a string of violent crimes stoking community fear, Santa Monica Interim Police Chief Kenneth Semko on Thursday said major crime had risen 6 percent in the first two months of 2018, adding that police have been re-deployed to provide “an immediate” impact on both crime and the community’s “perception of safety.”

Impro Theatre Takes Off Into the 'Twilight Zone' in Santa Monica This Month
Twilight Zone logo March 9, 2018 -- LA’s Impro Theatre invites Santa Monica audiences to take a trip into another dimension this month using its trademark improvisational style to tackle the classic early 60’s sci-fi television show, "The Twilight Zone." The shows -- which use audience suggestions to create improvised episodes -- take place the weekend of March 16 to 18 at The Edye.

Suspect Charged in Strong-Armed Robbery on Montana Avenue
March 8, 2018 -- Santa Monica police filed charges Thursday morning against the suspect in the strong-armed robbery of a woman on Montana Avenue earlier this week.

Santa Monica City Council Approves Emergency Law Impounding E-Scooters Posing a Public Hazard
March 8, 2018 -- Amid rising concern about public safety, the Santa Monica City Council Tuesday imposed an emergency law to impound “shared mobility” devices, such as e-scooters, when their use poses a hazard to others on the City’s streets and sidewalks.

New Police Chief for Santa Monica to be Announced 'Shortly,' City Manager Says
March 8, 2018 -- Nine months after then-Santa Monica Police Chief Jacqueline Seabrooks announced she would retire, the City is about to name her permanent replacement, City Manager Rick Cole tweeted Wednesday.

'Stairway' Concerts Showcase Talents of Santa Monica-Malibu Music Students Next Week
Stairway to the Stars logo March 8, 2018 -- Nearly 1,000 Santa Monica-Malibu public school students will showcase their talents next week at the 69th annual “Stairway of the Stars” concerts at Santa Monica High School's historic Barnum Hall auditorium. The three concerts -- which include music students from every school in the district -- take place next Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7 p.m.

Santa Monica’s Homeless Population Continued to Rise in 2018 but at Slower Pace
March 7, 2018 -- After a 26 percent jump in Santa Monica’s homeless population last year, the City said Tuesday the total had increased again this year, but at a much slower pace.

Santa Monica Considering “Tiny House Village” and other New Shelter for Homeless City Manager Says
March 7, 2018 -- Although the City has already done “more than its fair share,” Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole says concepts such as erecting a “Tiny House Village” for the rising homeless population are being discussed but only as part of a region-wide effort.

Santa Monica College Concerts Feature 'Socially Conscious' Choral Music
March 7, 2018 -- Santa Monica College (SMC) this month will feature everything from intimate jazz and symphonic grandeur to "socially conscious" choral music as part of its spring concert series.

LETTERS -- Current Santa Monica Voting System Not Accountable to All Voters
March 7, 2018 --
Never has a Latino from the Pico neighborhood been elected to the City Council, and the only one to ever sit on the dais had financial reasons to seek office.

Long-Awaited Santa Monica Early Childhood Center to Break Ground at Civic Center
Rendering of early childhood center
March 6, 2018 -- Three decades after it was first proposed, an early childhood education center will break ground at the Santa Monica Civic Center this month, officials from Santa Monica College (SMC) announced last week. A joint partnership between SMC and the City, the Santa Monica Early Childhood Lab School will serve as many as 110 infants, toddlers and preschoolers.

City Considers Big Rate Hikes for Downtown Santa Monica Parking Structures
March 6, 2018 -- Parking in City-operated parking structures for popular downtown Santa Monica could rocket by up to 71 percent to reach $30 on weekends for motorists who stay around for the day, according to a new report.

Trip to Downtown Santa Monica Offers Psychedelic Experience
Tunnel Vision mono closeup March 6, 2018 -- Visitors to the Downtown will be treated to a mind-twisting experience when they visit triangle square across the street from Santa Monica Place this spring. "Tunnel Vision" -- a series of ten sculptures composed of 20-foot linear rings by Los Angeles-based visual artist Jen Stark -- offers the sense of peering into a giant kaleidoscope.

Family of Second Young Santa Monica Woman Pleads for Help After Violent Episodes
March 5, 2018 -- Leigh Collins awoke to a knife-wielding attacker late last month in her Santa Monica apartment. Now her family has embarked on a path similar to one trod just a few weeks earlier by a desperate Santa Monica father facing huge hospitals bills after his young daughter also was attacked by an assailant.

PART V -- Former Mayor Bob Holbrook's Journey from Political Neophyte to Elder Statesman
Bob Holbrook March 3, 2018 -- From those who ran with Bob Holbrook when he was first elected to public office 35 years ago to those who run Santa Monica City Hall today, all have turned to the former mayor for guidance. We asked some of them to weigh in for this last part of The Lookout's series celebrating Bob's more than three decades of public service.

PART I -- A Tribute to Former Santa Monica Mayor Bob Holbrook
PART II -- More Testimonials to Former Mayor Bob Holbrook
PART III -- Former City Council Colleagues Pay Tribute to Bob Holbrook
PART IV -- The Incredible Mayor Bob and Other Tales

Fire Erupts at Condominium Complex in Santa Monica
March 5, 2018 -- Santa Monica Firefighters extinguished a "massive" fire that broke out Saturday night in a condominium complex in Ocean Park before it could spread to adjacent buildings, Fire Department officials said.


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