Santa Monica Lookout
September 21, 2023

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EXTRA -- Downtown Activist Attacked in Palisades Park
September 21, 2023 -- John Alle -- a Downtown business activist known for his crusading efforts to fight crime and anti-social behavior -- was hospitalized after being attacked by a homeless man in Palisades Park Tuesday afternoon, according to police.

DUI Driver Arrested After Police Chase Ends at Pier
September 21, 2023 -- A man recklessly driving a stolen vehicle led police on a late-night chase Wednesday that ended with his arrest at the Santa Monica Pier, according to police.

City Could Adopt AI-Equipped Camera Pilot Programs
September 20, 2023 -- Two City pilot programs that use AI-equipped cameras to deter crime and scan for parking violations should be permanently implemented, transportation officials told the City Council Wednesday.

Is the City Headed in the Right Direction?

Convicted Santa Monica Killer Charged with Cellmate's Murder
September 20, 2023 -- Ramon Escobar -- the convicted serial killer who committed two of his 2018 murders in Santa Monica -- has been charged with murdering his prison cellmate earlier this year, prosecutors announced Monday.

Jupiter, Rocketry and DIY Space Images at the SMC Planetarium
September 19, 2023 -- Upcoming shows at the Santa Monica College (SMC) planetarium will run the gamut -- from Galileo’s first fuzzy views of Jupiter's moons to extremely high resolution images of the universe.

Santa Monica Boosts Efforts to Tackle Homeless Problem in Parks
September 19, 2023 -- The City is increasing police patrols and stepping up efforts to clean up encampments in public parks frequented by the homeless, according to a report to the City Council last week.

Barnes & Noble Returns to The Promenade
September 18, 2023 -- Five years after shutting down, Barnes & Noble will return to the Promenade, marking "a pivotal moment" in the revitalization of the struggling pedestrian strip, Downtown officials announced Monday.

SMPD Gets Over $6 Million to Combat Retail Theft
September 18, 2023 -- The Santa Monica Police Department will receive more than $6 million in State funding to combat organized retail theft in the city, police officials announced last week.

Low-Income Residents Could Get Free E-Bikes
September 15, 2023 -- Santa Monica residents enrolled in low-income assistance programs could soon be eligible for up to $2,000 from the City to pay for a new e-bike, City officials announced Thursday.

LETTERS -- Residents Just Want You to Do Your Job
September 15, 2023 -- Apparently Couuncilmember Lana Negrete has still not resolved why labor item co-author Phil Brock threw her under the bus when he revealed a secret last-minute deal, writes Former Mayor Kevin McKeown.

OPINION -- Abandoning the Rules for Politics
September 15, 2023 -- Tuesday’s City Council meeting was unfortunately a showing of how politics took precedence over facilitating a fair and unbiased meeting, writes Councilmember Lana Negrete.

Much Noise, No Action on Union Protests
September 14, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday engaged in lengthy debates about parliamentary procedure before listening to dozens of speakers address an issue that had been pulled from the agenda.

Traffic Officer Hospitalized After Being Struck by DUI Driver
September 14, 2023 -- A motorist was arrested for driving under the influence of drugs after striking an SMPD traffic enforcement scooter Wednesday afternoon, seriously injuring the officer, according to police.

City Clerk Denise Anderson-Warren to Retire
September 13, 2023 -- When Denise Anderson-Warren joined the City Clerk's office homelessness was the hot-button issue and political factions were fighting for control of the City Council.

Zero-Bail Protocol to Take Effect
September 13, 2023 -- Starting next month, most suspects arrested in Santa Monica for non-violent felonies and misdemeanors will be released on the spot or immediately after booking without bail, police officials said Wednesday.

OPINION -- Council Abandons Residents
September 13, 2023 -- I cannot recall another time ever when a Council majority deliberately chose to abandon the work of the City, writes former Mayor Kevin McKeown.

Police Investigate Tip From 'Creep Catching Unit'
September 12, 2023 -- Police detectives are investigating allegations of attempted lewd acts with a minor after meeting with a private vigilante group that targets online predators, police said Tuesday.

Coastal Clean Up Day This Month at Former 'Inkwell' Beach
September 12, 2023 -- Santa Monica College (SMC) is inviting volunteers to take part in Coastal Cleanup Day this month at a once-segregated stretch of beach frequented by a legendary Black surfer.

Lobbying Efforts Pick Up Steam in Voting Rights Case
September 11, 2023 -- Proponents of both fighting and settling the voting rights lawsuit against the City are stepping up their lobbying efforts as the City Council prepares to discuss the issue in closed session Tuesday.

OPINION -- Let the Appeals Court Decide Voting Rights Case

OPINION -- It's Time to End City's Voting Rights Fight

City Council to Tackle Noise
September 11, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday will explore ways to quell early morning hotel union demonstrations, quiet roaring cars and tone down raucous musicians on the Promenade.

Water Around Pier Under Continued Health Advisory
September 8, 2023 -- The water near the Santa Monica Pier remained under a Public Health advisory Friday as bacteria levels exceeded State standards that make it unsafe to swim.

Santa Monica to Hold 9/11 Day of Remembrance
September 8, 2019 -- Early Monday morning, the Fire Department will honor the memories of the 2,977 people, including two Santa Monicans, who died in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

The Last Taxis in Town
September 7, 2023 -- Fourteen years ago, Santa Monica was a wild west for taxi cabs, as the City scrambled to curb the 511 permitted cabs operated by 55 companies.

SMC Gallery to Exhibit Works by Arts 'Pioneer'
September 7, 2023 -- Selected works by d’Arcy Hayman, "one of the great unsung heroes of 20th century art," will be on view at the Santa Monica College (SMC) Emeritus Art Gallery, exhibition organizers said.

Monthly Poll Finds Overwhelming Opposition to Early Morning Union Protests
September 6, 2023 -- A monthly poll of Santa Monica residents shows overwhelming opposition to early morning protests by the hotel workers union and lukewarm support for settling and seven-year-long voting rights lawsuit.

SMC Honors Constitution Day With Talks By Legal Scholars
September 6, 2023 -- (UPDATED) Santa Monica College (SMC) will commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution on September 17, 1787 with two talks on the nation's guiding document this month.

Police Search for Suspects Who Targeted Montana Avenue Businesses
September 5, 2023 -- Police are searching for three masked suspects and beefing up security along Montana Avenue after three stores were vandalized, with two of them broken into, early Monday morning.

Man Arrested for Attempted Rape
September 5, 2023 -- A man was arrested for attempted rape Saturday after the victim fought off the naked assailant who broke into her apartment in Santa Monica's Mid-City Neighborhood, according to police.

Power Outage Shuts Down Samohi
September 5, 2023 -- Samohi closed down on Tuesday after a major blown fuse triggered a power outage, District officials announced Monday night.

Police Increase Patrols Labor Day Weekend, Most City Facilities Closed Monday
September 1, 2023 -- There will be more police officers visibly patrolling Downtown streets, the beach and public parking structures as visitors descend on Santa Monica over the Labor Day weekend.

Meetings Focus on Equity, Racial Justice
August 31, 2023 -- This month, the City will hold a workshop to discuss racial justice and begin hammering out a citywide equity plan at a kickoff event that includes information on a new grant program.

SMMUSD Ranked Among State's Top School Districts
August 30, 2023 -- SMMUSD was ranked among the top school systems in California by Niche, while Samohi and Malibu High School were rated among the top high schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, District officials announced Wednesday.

Police Launch Extra Traffic Enforcement Efforts
August 30, 2023 -- As Labor Day weekend approaches, Santa Monica traffic officers are cracking down on behaviors responsible for collisions involving motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.

Santa Monica Rents Rise After 3-Month Drop
August 29, 2023 -- Santa Monica rents rose 1.8 percent in August, bucking a nationwide trend that saw rents dip for the first time since February, according to Apartment List's monthly report.

Man Found Dead in Palisades Park Shot Himself
August 29, 2023 -- A homeless man found dead by police in Palisades Park early Monday morning had turned a gun on himself after firing shots in the air, according to police.

City Council Cracks Down on Knives and Guns
August 28, 2023 -- The City Council last week banned persons from openly carrying large blade knives, daggers and swords in public and imposed additional regulations for gun retailers and owners.

Body of Man Found in Palisades Park
August 28, 2028 -- Police are investigating the death of a man who may have been homeless that took place in Palisades Park early Monday morning.

LETTERS -- Revolving Door “Justice” Presaged Violent Crimes
August 28, 2023 -- Appallingly, government policies and officials play a decisive role in facilitating violent crime.

COVID Cases Continue Rising
August 25, 2023 -- A convergence of events is driving up the number of confirmed COVID cases and hospitalizations, although they remain far below the levels at this time last year, according to LA County Public Health Officials.

OPINION -- Cut the Losses and Settle This Lawsuit
August 25, 2023 -- Maybe an at-large election system was OK in the past, but now that big money is involved, we need voting reform.

Man Caught in Time Stealing Rolex
August 25, 2023 -- Police arrested a Florida man Monday after he tried to make off with a $40,000 watch from the Rolex store at Santa Monica Place, police officials said Friday.

EXTRA -- Supreme Court Reverses Voting Rights Ruling
August 24, 2023 -- In a major blow to the City, the California Supreme Court on Thursday reversed an Appeals Court ruling that had found Santa Monica's at-large election system did not discriminate against Latino voters.

Charges Filed Against Homeless Man for Series of Hate Crime Assaults
August 24, 2023 -- The LA County District Attorney’s Hate Crimes Unit on Thursday filed charges against a homeless man who attacked a worker on Main Street and assaulted two City workers.

SPECIAL REPORT -- Police Officers, Firefighters Dominate Top Earners List
August 23, 2023 -- When it comes to pay, it's a good time to be a sworn public safety worker in Santa Monica, thanks to recent salary hikes and plentiful overtime due to longstanding staffing shortages.

SMC Planetarium Focuses on Jupiter, Eclipses, Equinoxes and Rocketry
August 23, 2023 -- The Santa Monica College (SMC) planetarium next month will take a look at Jupiter, explain equinoxes and discuss upcoming solar eclipses.

OPINION -- Standing on the Right Side of History
August 23, 2023 -- We will all be remembered for where we stood on the voting rights of minorities -- probably more than any other issue we address as City Council members.

Finance Director to Retire After Overseeing City's Most Challenging Budgets
August 22, 2023 -- Finance Director Gigi Decavalles-Hughes, who oversaw the City's budgets during unprecedented economic shocks, will retire in December after 12 years in the post, the City announced Monday.

City Attorney Seeks Advice on Potential Councilmember Conflict
August 22, 2023 -- Can City Councilmember Lana Negrete take part in Council discussions and decisions regarding the sale of the City owned Civic Auditorium to the School District? That was the question City Attorney Doug Sloan asked the State's ethics commission Friday.

Police Seek Additional Victims of Suspected Rapist
August 21, 2023 -- Police are looking for additional victims of a suspect arrested in Santa Monica this month for assault to commit rape.

Water Quality Under Pier Gives Santa Monica Beaches a Bum Rap, City Officials Say
August 21, 2023 -- Recent reports in the media questioning the water quality around the Pier present a skewed picture of Santa Monica beaches, which are safe for swimming, City officials said Friday.

NEWS ANALYSIS -- Council to Take Position on Hotel Union Strike
August 18, 2023 -- A Councilmember item on Tuesday's agenda will test the power of the hotel workers union and the backing of strikers by incumbents seeking reelection next year.

Councilmember Items Crowd Tuesday's Agenda
August 18, 2023 -- The City Council will take up nine items placed by Councilmembers on Tuesday's agenda, with most tackling hot-button issues.

EXTRA -- Council Could Ban Some Knives Amid Rise in Stabbings
August 17, 2023 -- Less than a month after a man was fatally stabbed on Santa Monica beach, the City Council will take up a law on Tuesday to prohibit openly carrying large blade knives, daggers and swords in public.

COVID Cases, Hospitalizations on the Rise
August 17, 2023 -- Coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are rising in LA County -- and in Santa Monica -- although they remain at near-record lows, Public Health data released on Thursday show.

Protesting Noise -- A Tale of Two Cities
August 16, 2023 -- When it comes to the noisy union protests outside hotels embroiled in bitter contract negotiations, Santa Monica and Beverly Hills have taken divergent paths.

Santa Monica Poised to Create Poet Laureate Post
August 16, 2023 -- Santa Monica could soon have its own poet laureate to create new literary works that celebrate "the spirit and the special qualities" of the city, according to an item on Tuesday's City Council agenda.

Newly Formed 'Save the Civic' Group Opposes School District's 'Risky' Venture
August 15, 2023 -- The School District is taking a costly risk that will distract it from its core mission if it purchases the Civic Auditorium from the City, the newly formed Save the Civic group warned Monday.

New Fire Chief Same as the Old Chief
August 15, 2023 -- Santa Monica will replace departing Fire Chief Danny Alvarez with Wolfgang Knabe, the interim chief who held the post before Alvarez was hired a year and a half ago.

OPINION -- School District's Civic Plan "Ill-Advised" and "Risky"
August 15, 2023 -- We believe the District has more pressing needs than building a very costly gym at its high school. And we think the District’s own website would agree with us.

19 Santa Monica Restaurants Listed on Popular "Surcharge List"
August 14, 2023 -- Diners at a growing number of Santa Monica restaurants are forking out more than they expected to cover surcharges and fees automatically added to their bill.

Federal Court Decision Could Boost Mental Health Beds for Homeless
August 14, 2023 -- A federal appeals court on Friday paved the way for a trial in a groundbreaking lawsuit claiming Los Angeles County has not acted quickly enough to tackle its growing homeless problem.

School District Releases Plans for Civic Auditorium
August 11, 2023 -- (UPDATED) The School District on Friday unveiled a nearly $227 million plan -- excluding the purchase cost -- to upgrade and re-adapt the Civic Auditorium.

Free Concert Series Features Cutting-Edge Music
August 11, 2023 -- Singing in invented voices and experimental cool jazz are among the cutting-edge musical offerings at the remaining Soundwaves free concerts this year at the Santa Monica Public Library.

New Bidding Process Shortens Project Timelines
August 10, 2023 -- An expedited bidding process for smaller projects implemented by Public Works is reducing the time it takes to procure a contractor by at least half, according to a report sent to the City Council Thursday.

Police Arrest Homeless Man for Attempted Murder
August 10, 2023 -- A homeless man was arrested for attempted murder early Wednesday morning in the beating of another homeless man outside the public library branch in Ocean Park, according to police.

Late Summer Music in Two Parks
August 9, 2023 -- Music lovers can spend the rest of the summer weekends enjoying world and American roots music and the talents of local youth in two Santa Monica parks, City officials announced this week.

Legislature Set to Decide Fate of 20 Housing Bills
August 9, 2023 -- Landlords could be limited to collecting the equivalent of one month's rent as security deposit and cities could be prohibited from encouraging landlords to turn away or evict tenants who have committed a crime.

LETTERS -- When Is a Strike Not a Strike?
August 9, 2023 -- I live across the street from this “strike.” If this was a real strike, why are these hotels still functioning? And why hasn't the whole blue collar staff walked out?

3 SMC STEM Majors Engage in Cutting-Edge Research
August 9, 2023 -- Three Santa Monica College (SMC) students are participating in internship research projects in Massachusetts after winning a prestigious fellowship founded by MIT researchers.

Tensions Escalate on Hotel Picket Lines
August 8, 2023 -- Union workers and hotel representatives are blaming each other for growing tensions on the picket lines as demonstrations picked up steam during a third wave of strikes.

Man Arrested for Attacking Councilmember Part of Legal Revolving Door, Police Say
August 7, 2023 -- When Councilmember Phil Brock was attacked on the Promenade on July 16, it marked the third time the suspect was arrested in less than a month, a pattern Santa Monica police say reflects a legal revolving door.

City Awards More than $500,000 in Arts Grants
August 7, 2023 -- Santa Monica has awarded 56 grants totaling $525,525 to local artists and arts organizations, City officials announced on Monday.

Five Santa Monica Hotels Targeted in Third Wave of Union Strikes
August 4, 2023 -- Unite HERE Local 11 staged a third wave of strikes at dozens of Los Angeles area hotels on Friday -- including five in Santa Monica -- as negotiations with more than 40 hotels remain deadlocked.

Homeless Man Sentenced to 12 Years for 2020 Stabbing
August 4, 2023 -- A homeless man convicted of stabbing another homeless man sleeping in Reed park three years ago was sentenced to 12 years in state prison last week.

EXTRA -- Judge Upholds Transfer Tax Hike
August 3, 2023 -- A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge on Thursday issued a tentative ruling that found former Mayor Sue Himmelrich's transfer tax does not violate California's single-subject rule.

Movement to Save The Civic Picks Up Steam
August 3, 2023 -- A grassroots movement to save the Civic Auditorium is picking up steam as two of Santa Monica's most prominent groups on Thursday announced they will assume leading roles in the effort.

LETTERS -- City's Baseless Lawsuits Vilify Housing Providers
August 3, 2023 -- The City Attorney's office has adopted a strategy of initiating lawsuits against property owners and managers, some of them baseless, including the lawsuit against me.

Santa Monica Rents Drop for Third Straight Month
August 2, 2023 -- Santa Monica rents continued decreasing in July and have now dropped by -2.1 percent this year after a 7.3 rise during the same period last year, according to Apartment List's August report.

Fire Chief to Depart After Brief Tenure
August 2, 2023 -- Fire Chief Danny Alvarez will return to Burbank to head its Fire Department after a year and a half tenure in Santa Monica, City officials said in a surprise announcement Wednesday.

EXTRA -- Hotel Workers Union Submits Bed Tax Initiative
August 1, 2023 -- Unite HERE Local 11 submitted a ballot initiative to the City Clerk on Tuesday that would impose a 7 percent bed tax on Santa Monica hotels to create an affordable housing fund for hospitality workers.

Man Fatally Stabbed at Santa Monica Beach
August 1, 2023 -- A man was fatally stabbed at Santa Monica Beach Monday afternoon, with the incident at the popular tourist destination aired by local news stations and shared on social media.

Asteroids, Women Astronauts and the Theory of Relativity
July 31, 2023 -- In August, the Santa Monica College (SMC) planetarium will explore the struggles of women astronauts and present a math-free explanation of Einstein's theories of relativity.

Council Expands Uses, Heightens Security in Promenade Area
July 31, 2023 -- Santa Monica's struggling Third Street Promenade got a much-needed boost last week that should have visitors dancing in restaurants and enjoying movies on a rooftop.

Planning Appointments Expose Council Rift
July 28, 2023 -- (UPDATED) A divided City Council went 10 rounds Tuesday night before appointing three Planning Commissioners, two of them incumbents.

COVID Cases, Deaths Remain at Near Record Lows
July 28 -- The number of confirmed coronavirus cases reported in Santa Monica over the past two weeks remained at a near record low, and no new deaths were reported, according to LA County Health data released Thursday.

Celebrate National Night Out on Tuesday
July 28, 2023 -- More than 1,000 potential "superheroes" are expected to gather on the City Hall lawn Tuesday evening to celebrate National Night Out, an annual event promoting police-community relations.

Council Ends Negotiations to Sell Civic Auditorium for Affordable Housing
July 27, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday terminated negotiations with Community Corp, Santa Monica's biggest affordable housing developer, to buy the historic Civic Auditorium.

City Hires Communications Manager
July 27, 2023 -- A former newspaper reporter who most recently served as spokesperson for Long Beach Utilities has been hired as the City's communications and public information manager.

Travel Overspending Stirs Heated Council Debate
July 26, 2023 -- Councilmember Phil Brock's over-budget travel spending triggered a heated debate at Tuesday night's Council meeting that devolved into personal and political attacks.

Police To Hold Traffic Safety Operations
July 26, 2023 -- The Santa Monica Police Department (SMPD) will conduct a traffic safety operation focused on enforcing laws that impact motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.

Council Delays Fines for Leaf-Blower Violations
July 25, 2023 -- Gardeners in Santa Monica can continue using gas-powered leaf blowers for half a year without fear of being fined after a crackdown approved by the Council goes into effect next month.

LETTERS -- Hotel Union Should Take Its Bad Ideas Elsewhere
July 25, 2023 -- Tourism has bounced back in Santa Monica, with the number of visitors doubling over last year. Leave it to Unite Here Local 11 to cloud this sunny news.

Pressure Builds for Open Hearing on Civic Auditorium
July 24, 2023 -- History is repeating itself and only "a resident revolt" like the one that saved the Pier 50 years ago can secure the future of Santa Monica's iconic Civic Auditorium, the city's leading slow-growth group warned Sunday.

Monthly Poll Finds Most Support "Pretextual Stops," Oppose More Taxes
July 24, 2023 -- A monthly poll of civically engaged Santa Monica residents found most support "pretextual" traffic stops by police but strongly oppose using AI cameras to distribute parking tickets.

Civic Auditorium Back on Closed Session Agenda
July 21, 2023 -- After causing an uproar at this week's City Council meeting, closed door negotiations with the School District and Community Corporation to purchase Santa Monica's historic Civic Auditorium will take place on Tuesday.

Freeway, PCH to Close for Emergency Bluff Work
July 21, 2023 -- Unstable land in a portion of the Santa Monica Bluffs will force the emergency closure of major access roads in and out of the city on Tuesday and Wednesday, City officials announced Friday.

Individual with COVID Attended Tuesday's Council Meeting , City Officials Say
July 20, 2023 -- During a record low level of COVID-related hospitalizations, Santa Monica officials announced Thursday that an individual who attended Tuesday's City Council meeting had tested positive for the virus.

Santa Monica Poised to Crack Down on Gas-Powered Leaf Blowers
July 19, 2023 -- For nearly a quarter century, gardeners have been blowing off a 1990 Santa Monica law that bans all motorized leaf blowers. On Tuesday, the City Council is poised to crack down on gas-powered blowers and authorize the use of electric ones.

Hotel Union Submits Ballot Initiative for Country's Highest Minimum Wage
July 19, 2023 -- The hotel workers union on Tuesday filed a ballot initiative requiring Santa Monica hotels to pay their workers at least $30 per hour, which would make it the highest minimum wage in the nation.

Brock's Actions: A Welcome Sign of Citizen Involvement or a Potentially Dangerous Example?
July 18, 2023 -- Councilmember Phil Brock's run-in with a homeless man on the Promenade Sunday -- which made local headlines -- has raised concerns over his involvement in the man's arrest and the message it could send.

Hotels, Workers Union Still Deadlocked
July 18, 2023 -- (UPDATED) Two weeks after the hotel workers union staged its first wave of strikes, which included walkouts at five Santa Monica hotels, negotiations remain deadlocked.

Santa Monica Taps Interim Transportation Director
July17, 2023 -- Deputy City Manager Anuj Gupta will head the Department of Transportation (DOT) while the City conducts a nationwide search for a permanent director.

Councilmember Brock Attacked on The Promenade
July 17, 2023 -- Councilmember Phil Brock, a vocal supporter of boosting public safety efforts, was attacked on the Third Street Promenade Sunday afternoon by a man who appeared to be homeless, the Councilmember told The Lookout.

COVID Hospitalizations Hit Record Low
July 14, 2023 -- The number of patients in Los Angeles County hospitalized with COVID dropped to its lowest level since the pandemic began 40 months ago, according to Public Health data released Thursday.

Suspect in 2021 Carjacking Sentenced
July 14, 2023 -- A suspect involved in a series of armed robberies that targeted restaurant valet drivers was sentenced to 18 years in prison for a 2021 kidnapping and robbery in Santa Monica.

Three Planning Commissioners Seek Reappointment
July 13, 2023 -- Three Planning Commissioners with a total of 28 years on Santa Monica's most visible and powerful board are seeking to be reappointed by the City Council Tuesday for another four years.

Prosecutors Won't Seek Death Penalty in Bulger's Killing
July 13, 2023 -- Prosecutors won't seek the death sentence against the Mafia hitman and the Massachusetts gangster charged with the 2018 beating death of former Santa Monica resident and Boston mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger in a federal prison.

$1.5 Billion Biennial Budget Restores Cut Services
July 12, 2023 -- With projected revenues expected to slowly continue growing, the Santa Monica City Council last month approved a biennial budget that totals nearly $1.5 billion and restores cut services.

Red Cross Seeks Blood Donors Amid Shortage
July 12, 2023 -- The Red Cross is seeking blood donors this month to prevent a critical blood shortage as its supply rapidly dwindles, the organization announced.

SMPD Seeks Council Approval to Use Military Grade Ammunition
July 12, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday will take up a Police Department request to use military grade ammunition in patrol rifles that is deemed safer to use in populated urban areas.

Santa Monica to Prep for More Ballot Funding Measures
July 11, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday is expected to take initial steps to place funding measures on the 2024 ballot after voters approved a slew of new taxes last year.

Hotel Workers Stage Second Wave of Walkouts
July 10, 2023 -- Less than one week after returning from a three-day walkout at five Santa Monica hotels, union workers staged a second wave of strikes at hotels near LAX on Monday.

Police Reform Commission Takes Up Identity Profiling
July 10, 2023 -- Blacks were involved in a disproportionate number of traffic stops in Santa Monica last year compared the the size of their population, according to a report that will be presented to the Police Reform Commission on Tuesday.

Armed Woman Surrenders to Police After 5-Hour Standoff
July 9, 2023 -- An armed woman barricaded inside a Downtown Santa Monica motel room surrendered to police Sunday evening after a five-hour standoff.

Two Teens Shot at Beach Party
July 8, 2023 -- Two teenage girls were shot by a lone gunman at a large party near the southern border of Santa Monica beach Friday night, according to police.

Hotels File Unfair Labor Charges Against Workers Union
July 6, 2023 -- The bargaining group for 44 hotels in LA and Orange counties has filed unfair labor practice charges against the hotel workers union alleging it violated the law by striking over claims unrelated to the employees' contracts.

Police Thwart Suicide Attempt at Palisades Park Bluffs
July 6, 2023 -- For the third time since March of last year, police thwarted a suicide attempt Wednesday morning in the area around Palisades Park.

Santa Monica Hotel Rates Second Highest in California
July 5, 2023 -- Santa Monica was the second priciest summer destination in California for hotel stays this year, according to a survey by

Hotel Union Strike Ends, More Could Follow
July 5, 2023 -- Several thousand hotel workers, including those at five Santa Monica hotels, returned to work on Wednesday after what union officials warn is "just the first wave of strikes and disruption."

City Wins Injunction in Housing Discrimination Case
July 4, 2023 -- A family living in a Santa Monica rent-controlled apartment has been paid more than $1 million in a housing discrimination case, while the City won injunctions against the building's owner and manager, City officials said Tuesday.

Workers Strike at 5 Santa Monica Hotels
July 4, 2023 -- Workers at five Santa Monica hotels remained on strike for a third straight day on Tuesday as labor negotiations reached a standstill at some four dozen hotels in the Los Angeles region.

Santa Monica Rents Drop Again in June
June 30, 2023 -- Santa Monica rents fell for the second month in a row, dropping to the lowest level in more than a year, according to Apartment List's latest monthly report released Thursday.

Pier Waters Under Health Advisory As Large Crowds Expected This Weekend
June 30, 2023 -- The large crowds expected to flock to Santa Monica Beach to escape a heat wave over the Independence Day weekend should avoid wading into the waters near the Pier.

LA County's Homeless Population Continues Rising
June 29, 2023 -- Los Angeles County's homeless population rose 9 percent last year, reaching an estimated 75,518 people, nearly three-quarters of them living on the streets, according to results of the 2023 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count released Thursday.

Monthly Poll Finds Little Support for Measure Restricting Guns
June 28, 2023 -- A monthly poll of Santa Monica residents concerned with public safety found that the majority oppose a proposed law that would place restrictions on gun sales and ownership.

Conductors Wanted: No Experience Needed
June 28, 2023 -- You don't need to read music or have experience conducting to shape musical improvisations at an open public workshop presented by Soundwaves in Santa Monica on Sunday.

Court Tries to Pin Down Voting Rights Standards
June 27, 2023 -- During oral arguments Tuesday in the voting rights case against the City, the California Supreme Court focused on how to interpret a law that sets no numerical threshold and fails to define key words.

Downtown to Add More Private Security
June 27, 2023 -- Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. (DTSM) will add another layer of private security to work with police under a $1.7 million contract approved by the agency's board this month.

Coastal Commission Delays Could Kill New Malibu HS Building, District Officials Warn
June 26, 2023 -- A plan to build a new Malibu High School building is being jeopardized by delays at the California Coastal Commission, School District officials said Monday.

Council Could Seek to Squirrel Away Travel Funds
June 26, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday will consider whether to re-appropriate travel funds its members haven't spent "to supplement existing Council Discretionary funds" in the upcoming fiscal year.

Final Showdown Tuesday In Voting Rights Case
June 23, 2023 -- The final showdown in a seven-year voting rights lawsuit against the City -- which could alter the future of both state and local politics -- will take place at 10 a.m. Tuesday, when the California Supreme Court hears oral arguments in a case.

Rents to Rise 2.8 Percent in September
June 23, 2023 -- The Rent Control Board on Thursday approved a mandated 2.8 percent rent increase that kicks in September 1 and opted to place a $67 cap.

OPINION -- Traffic Stops and Race
June 23, 2023 -- Are traffic stops in Santa Monica racially discriminatory? Thanks to the CA Racial and Identity Profiling Act (RIPA), we now have data from SMPD to help answer this question.

Police to Hold DUI Checkpoint Friday
June 22, 2023 -- Santa Monica police will hold a DUI checkpoint on June 30, weeks after a a drunk driver severely injured a pedestrian in a sobering reminder of the consequences of driving under the influence.

Council To Take Up Airport Contracts
June 22, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday is poised to approve contracts to upgrade the Santa Monica Airport runway and provide leasing services for commercial spaces on the 227-acre site.

Mars, Meteors and a Motion Picture of the Universe
June 21, 2023 -- "Universal Pictures" will take on a new meaning at The Santa Monica College (SMC) planetarium next month with a look at a cutting-edge telescope that can take a motion picture of all that we think exists.

Longtime Santa Monica Activist Who Helped Preserve Coastal Skyline Dead at 79
June 20, 2023 -- Julie Lopez Dad -- a slow-growth tenant activist known for her commitment, intelligence and kindness -- died Saturday at age 79 in her Ocean Park apartment. The cause of death has not been determined.

Celebrate America' Returns After 3-Year Hiatus
June 20, 2023 -- Sidelined for three years by the COVID emergency, "Celebrate America" -- the city's only fireworks display marking the nation’s independence -- will return this year.

Homeless Bank Robber Arrested
June 20, 2023 -- A homeless man from out of state was arrested Tuesday morning after robbing a bank in Downtown Santa Monica, according to police.

Iconic Hotel, Former Department Store Win Preservation Awards
June 16, 2023 -- The rehabilitation of two prominent Downtown buildings and projects that chronicle the history of two minority neighborhoods are the winners of the Santa Monica Conservancy 2023 Preservation Awards.

Santa Monica Celebrates Juneteenth
June 16, 2023 -- Santa Monica will hold the 31st annual Juneteenth celebration on Saturday at Virginia Avenue Park, while City Hall and other public facilities will close on Monday.

EXTRA -- Santa Monica Drafting 'Cutting Edge' Gun Law
June 15, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday unanimously directed staff to draft an ordinance that would be the "best gold standard" for placing restrictions on gun sales and ownership.

Santa Monica Pier Is California's Most Polluted Beach
June 15, 2023 -- The Santa Monica Pier is the most polluted beach in California, earning straight Fs that landed it on Heal the Bay's notorious Beach Bummer List for the second straight year.

Residents Urge Stronger Action to Curb Growing Homeless Problem
June 14, 2023 -- More than a dozen Santa Monica residents took to the podium at Tuesday's City Council meeting to share their personal encounters with the homeless and urge stronger action to curb crime and anti-social behavior.

Council Jacks Up Solid Waste Rates After 3-Year Freeze
June 14, 2023 -- With one public speaker and no discussion, the City Council on Tuesday approved solid waste rate hikes that will result in steady increases over the next five years.

EXTRA -- Council Takes Up Lawsuits Stemming from 2020 Riots
June 13, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday took up four lawsuits -- including a federal case filed by Black Lives Matter (BLM) -- claiming the City violated the rights of protestors during the May 31, 2020 riots in Santa Monica.

Council Approves Nearly $13 Million in Contracts
June 13, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday approved half a dozen five-year contracts totaling nearly $13 million for services ranging from private security at parking structures to maintenance of police radio operations.

Historical Novels Featured in Summer Reading Program
October 12, 2023 -- Two historical novels about Asian women set more than 400 years apart are the subjects of a Santa Monica Library reading program that runs through August 12.

Council Poised to Approve $2.2 Million Contract for Parking Structure Security
June 12, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday is expected to extend for five years a pilot program that provides overnight security patrols credited with lowering crime at City parking structures in the Downtown area.

Transportation Director Ed King to Retire
June 9, 2023 -- Ed King -- who rose through the transportation ranks from traffic checker to bus driver to eventually heading Santa Monica's Big Blue Bus (BBB) -- is retiring after 46 years of service, City officials announced Friday.

Former School District Employee Kills Himself During Police Standoff
June 9, 2023 -- A former custodian for the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD) fatally shot himself early Monday morning during a standoff with Santa Monica police who were attempting to serve him with an arrest warrant.

Impact of Supreme Court Ruling on Local Voting Rights Case Debatable
June 8, 2023 -- A surprise U.S. Supreme Court decision Thursday striking down Alabama's congressional map is a major victory for minority voters, but its impact on the voting rights lawsuit against Santa Monica is debatable.

SMC Student Team Wins Design Competition
June 8, 2022 -- A team of Santa Monica College (SMC) design students won a competition to re-imagine MaCher, Inc. products by redesigning a travel carry bag for consumer electronics, school officials announced this week.

Transfer Tax Hike Lawsuit Hearing Set for August
June 7, 2023 -- The parties in a lawsuit that seeks to void Santa Monica's transfer tax hike have filed motions for a hearing in Los Angeles County Superior Court set for August 3.

Pier Waters Under Health Advisory
June 7, 2023 -- Los Angeles County health officials have issued an advisory for the water around the Santa Monica Pier, which exceeds State standards for bacteria.

OPINION -- A Call for Action from the Trenches
June 7, 2023 -- Things are very dire in Santa Monica. Locals and tourists are not wanting to come to downtown SM due to the appalling conditions we see on a daily basis and it is hugely affecting our businesses.

Solid Waste Rates Set to Rise
June 6, 2023 -- Single-family customers in Santa Monica could see their bi-monthly solid waste bill rise over the next five years -- from about $84 to $141 -- under rate hikes the City Council will take up Tuesday.

Plane Flips While Landing at Santa Monica Airport
June 6, 2023 -- A single-engine Cessna plane flipped as it landed at Santa Monica Airport Monday afternoon, marking the third accident involving the City's airport in nine months.

Few Approve of Council's Performance, Poll Finds
June 5, 2023 -- A monthly poll of Santa Monica residents found that crime and homelessness remain the top concerns, while few approve of the new City Council's performance so far.

Pedestrian in Critical Condition, Driver Arrested for Felony DUI
June 5, 2023 -- A drunk driver crashed and severely injured a pedestrian sitting on a bus bench shortly before midnight Friday, according to police.

Council Weighs in on Nearly $1.5 Billion Proposed Biennial Budget
June 2, 2023 -- Last week, the City Council weighed in on a proposed biennial budget totaling more than $1.487 billion, an increase of some $114 million over the previous two-year fiscal budget.

SMC Fashion Students to Showcase Their Designs
June 2, 2023 -- LA Mode 2023 -- the Santa Monica College (SMC) Fashion Program's annual show on June 16 -- will feature a dozen student collections inspired by eclectic global styles.

School Board Hires District Administrator as Superintendent
June 1, 2023 -- After an "arduous national search," the School Board on Thursday tapped one of its own, unanimously voting to promote District Executive Director Dr. Antonio M. Shelton to superintendent.

Santa Monica Rents Drop During Peak Moving Season
May 31, 2023 -- Following a brief two-month rise, rents in Santa Monica dropped by -0.9 percent in May and have fallen -0.4 percent so far this year, according to Apartment List's latest monthly report released Wednesday.

Local Store Clerk Cited for Selling Alcohol to a Minor
May 31, 2023 -- A Santa Monica store faces administrative action from the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) after police cited a clerk for selling alcohol to a minor, SMPD officials announced Wednesday.

Theft Drives Crime Hike in Santa Monica
May 30, 2023 -- The number of serious crimes reported in Santa Monica rose by 14 percent during the first quarter of 2023, driven by a spike in larceny, according to SMPD crime data released last week.

Two Men Charged with Burglary, Mail Theft
May 30, 2022 -- County prosecutors last week filed residential burglary and mail theft charges against two men caught on camera stealing mail from a Santa Monica apartment complex in Ocean Park.

Homeless Man Assaults, Stabs Tourists on Pier
May 30, 2023 -- A homeless man assaulted two women and stabbed two men who came to their defense in separate incidents Saturday night at the Santa Monica Pier, according to police.

Uller Sex Abuse Filings Could Trickle In For Years
May 23, 2023 -- When the City Council last month voted to settle the remaining sexual abuse cases filed by 124 plaintiffs against the City, officials announced the closure of a tragic chapter in Santa Monica history.

U.S. Ambassador to Address SMC Graduating Class
May 25, 2023 -- A U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations will address Santa Monica College's (SMC) 2023 graduating class at the first in-person commencement ceremony to be held live since 2019, school officials announced this week.

Council Beefs Up Security at Pier, Downtown Parks
May 24, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday unanimously voted to approve two contracts totaling nearly $2 million to beef up security at the Pier and at three Downtown parks.

Santa Monica Is Third Least Affordable City for Home Buyers
May 23, 2023 -- Santa Monica is the third least affordable city in the country to buy a home, according to an analysis of 300 U.S. cities by WalletHub released Tuesday.

Police to Be on Lookout for Violations Involving Motorcyclists
May 23, 2023 -- Extra officers will be patrolling Santa Monica's streets Thursday and Friday looking for violations that involve motorcycles, which proliferate on the nation's roads during summer.

Supreme Court Sets Date for Oral Arguments in Voting Rights Case
May 22, 2023 -- Two and a half years after agreeing to take up the closely watched Voting Rights lawsuit against the City, the Supreme Court on Monday set a date for oral arguments.

County Health Continues to Collect Detailed Data as COVID Wanes
May 22, 2023 -- As coronavirus cases, hospitalizations and virus-related deaths drop to levels not seen since the pandemic began, LA County Health officials vow to continue the "robust collection" of "timely local data."

Santa Monica Travel Market Continues to Recover
May 19, 2023 -- Santa Monica's tourism industry is on a steady road to recovery, with both the number of visitors and the money they spent rising significantly last year, tourism officials announced at a summit Wednesday.

SMC Planetarium Explores Invisible Secrets
May 19, 2023 -- From dark matter and nebulae to deep sky exotica, the Santa Monica planetarium next month will explore a series unusual phenomena hidden in the universe.

Council to Consider Law to Curb Skyrocketing Catalytic Converter Thefts
May 18, 2023 -- Ninety-nine percent of all catalytic converter theft cases in Santa Monica -- which total 50 per month -- have gone unsolved because there are no laws defining and prosecuting them, City officials said.

Two Juveniles Arrested for Armed Robbery Tied to Multiple Crimes
May 18, 2023 -- Police on Monday arrested two juveniles tied to multiple serious crimes in Santa Monica when one of them accidentally shot himself in the hand shortly after an armed robbery, police said.

Council to Focus on Security
May 17, 2023 -- From maintaining police radio towers on Santa Monica's tallest rooftop to retaining ambassadors at its busiest parks, Tuesday's City Council consent calendar focuses largely on security.

Two SMC Students Headed to Washington DC
May 16, 2023 -- Two Santa Monica College (SMC) students are headed to the nation's capitol this summer to participate the inaugural Community College Global Affairs Fellowship program, college officials announced this week.

NEWS ANALYSIS -- Advertising Averse Santa Monica Embraces Digital Kiosks
May 16, 2023 -- (UPDATED) "The Future is Here," City officials announced this week, and Santa Monicans next month can get a first hand glimpse of what it will look like when kiosks spring up on commercial sidewalks across the city.

SMC Presents a View From Space
May 16, 2023 -- For nearly half a year, Raja Chari saw 16 sunrises and sunsets a day. On June 1, the NASA astronaut will share his experiences during a Distinguished Scientist Lecture at Santa Monica College (SMC).

Westside Food Bank Donors Can Provide 2-for-1 Meals
May 15, 2023 -- Those who donate to the Santa Monica-based Westside Food Bank (WSFB) will see their donations matched dollar-for-dollar, up to $100,000, through the end of June, agency officials announced last week.

Drug Overdoses Drive Dramatic Hike in LA County Homeless Deaths
May 15, 2023 -- The death toll among LA County's homeless jumped from less than 1,300 in 2019 to more than 2,200 in 2021, largely fueled by a dramatic rise in drug overdoses, according to a Public Health report released Friday.

Unanimous Council Vote Masks Deep Disagreements About Homelessness
May 12, 2023 -- In the end, it was unanimous. All the Councilmembers present agreed that the City should continue, and in some cases expand, the ambitious and costly programs and initiatives it began embarking on decades ago to tackle an entrenched homeless problem.

Council Paves Way to Replace Mall Movie Theater with Museum
May 11, 2023 -- The saga of Santa Monica's first new movie theater in 20 years ended quietly Tuesday night with an ordinance swiftly approved by the City Council without comment.

Rent Board Announces 2.8 Percent Rent Increase
May 11, 2023 -- The Santa Monica Rent Control Board on Tuesday announced a mandated 2.8 percent annual rent increase starting on September 1.

Council Approves Agreement That Removes 'Builder's Remedy' Projects
May 10, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday approved a settlement agreement that will avert a lengthy legal battle over an untested development policy and scale back nearly a dozen projects that could have been built largely outside the City's control.

Suspect Charged in Overdoses of Santa Monica Girls
May 9, 2023 -- A Los Angeles man has been charged with selling counterfeit pills containing fentanyl that led to the life-threatening overdoses of three 15-year-old girls in Santa Monica last May.

SMC Student Film to Screen at Cannes
May 9, 2023 -- "Azizam" -- a short film written and directed by Santa Monica College (SMC) student Alci Rengifo -- will be screened at The American Pavilion at the world-renown Cannes Film Festival this month.

Slow-Growth Group Opposes 'Builder's Remedy' Settlement Agreement
May 8, 2023 -- Santa Monica's most powerful slow-growth group on Monday urged the City Council to put the brakes on a proposed settlement agreement that would avert 13 "builder's remedy" projects totaling nearly 4,200 units.

Remains Found in Santa Monica ID'd As Founder of Sobriety App
May 8, 2023 -- The remains of a man who had been missing for nearly a year and a half were identified Saturday after being found in the courtyard of an abandoned building in Santa Monica last month, police said.

EXTRA -- WS Could Pull 13 'Builder's Remedy' Projects Under Proposed Settlement Agreement
May 5, 2023 -- A major developer could pull 13 "builder's remedy" projects and resubmit them under Santa Monica's ministerial planning process as part of a settlement agreement the City Council will consider Tuesday.

Council Set to Fill Newly Created Tax Advisory Committee
May 4, 2023 -- Five applicants are vying to sit on a newly formed committee that will advise the City Council on how to use more than $4 million a year to fund "on-going urgent community priorities."

EXTRA -- Santa Monica's Homeless Numbers Rise After COVID-Driven Drop
May 4, 2023 -- A total of 926 individuals were counted during this year's homeless census in Santa Monica, an increase over last year but fewer than were counted in 2019, according to results released by the City Thursday.

Grant Funding on Tuesday's Agenda
May 3, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday is expected to give the go-ahead to seek a $5 million housing grant from the State and to hand out more than $10 million in human services grants.

Police to Hold Traffic Safety Operations Friday
May 3, 2023 -- Santa Monica police on Friday will conduct traffic safety operations to crack down on drivers who put the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists at risk and to curb behavior that leads to motorcycle crashes.

Pickleball Courts Would Cost More than $5 Million
May 2, 2023 -- Santa Monica finds itself in a pickle: Advocates of the booming pickleball craze are pushing for new courts, but the cash-strapped City has no funds available to build them.

Monthly Poll Finds Most Residents Oppose Gender-Neutral Restrooms
May 2, 2023 -- A monthly poll of Santa Monica residents concerned with public safety found a vast majority of respondents oppose the Council's vote to require gender-neutral public restrooms in new buildings.

Cash-Strapped City Faces Record Pension Deficit
May 1, 2023 -- The City of Santa Monica is facing an unfunded pension liability of nearly half a billion dollars as it struggles to recover from the coronavirus shutdown and pay a $122.5 million settlement approved by the City Council last week.

Santa Monica Reads 'The Sum of Us'
May 1, 2023 -- Santa Monica Reads, one of the nation's longest running community-wide reading programs, will discuss a bestselling book that shifted the debate on the ills of racism.

300th COVID-Related Death Reported in Santa Monica
April 28, 2023 -- Data posted on LA County's Public Health Surveillance dashboard Thursday indicate that the 300th COVID-related death in Santa Monica was reported during the past two weeks.

State Gives BBB Nearly $23 Million to Electrify Fleet
April 28, 2023 -- Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus (BBB) has received a $22.9 million State grant to purchase 5 battery electric buses (BEBs) and develop infrastructure to charge up to 104 buses, City officials announced Thursday.

Santa Monica Rents Rise for 2nd Straight Month
April 27, 2023 -- The median rent in Santa Monica increased 0.8 percent in April, marking the second straight monthly rise after dropping for half a year, according to Apartment List's latest monthly report released Thursday.

Juveniles Charged With Assault After Attacking Man With Skateboards
April 27, 2023 -- Assault charges have been filed against two juveniles who attacked a fellow Expo Line passenger with skateboards last week after exiting the train at the Downtown terminal.

Council Approves Gender-Neutral Public Restrooms
April 26, 2023 -- With a 6 to 0 vote by the City Council on Tuesday, Santa Monica became the second city in California, and likely the nation, to require gender-neutral public restrooms in new buildings.

SMC Symposium Explores Cross-Racial Solidarity
April 26, 2023 -- Santa Monica College (SMC) will host a symposium next month featuring a series of events that explore ways to forge a stronger democracy through cross-racial ties.

EXTRA -- Council Votes to Settle Remaining Sexual Abuse Cases for $122.5 Million
April 25, 2023 -- The City Council Tuesday evening voted 5 to 0 to pay $122.5 million to settle the remaining lawsuits filed by 131 plaintiffs who claim a former City employee sexually abused them when they were children and teens two to three decades ago.

A Star Is Born -- and Dies -- at SMC Planetarium
April 25, 2023 -- The Santa Monica College (SMC) planetarium next month will take a look at the life cycle of stars, the surface of exoplanets and America's first space station.

Council Poised to Set Aside 3 More Properties for Affordable Housing
April 24, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday is expected to pave the way for affordable housing at the sites of the old Downtown Fire Station, City TV's shuttered studio and two small parcels by the Expo Line terminus lot.

Samohi to Host Panel on Mental Health Crisis Among High School Students
April 24, 2023 -- Santa Monica High School will host one of six panels in LA County next month that address the deteriorating mental health of high school students in the U.S.

Councilmembers Concerned About Gender-Neutral Public Restrooms
April 21, 2023 -- (UPDATED) Several Councilmembers are expressing concerns about supporting an item on Tuesday's agenda that would require gender-neutral public restrooms in new buildings.

Diner Injured After Homeless Stranger Smashes His Table
April 21, 2023 -- A man was hospitalized Thursday evening after a stranger smashed two chairs on the table where he and his partner were dining outside the California Pizza Kitchen Downtown, police said.

Council to Take Up Sexual Abuse Lawsuits Filed By Another 131 Plaintiffs
April 20, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday will take up a flood of lawsuits filed by 131 plaintiffs who claim former City employee Eric Uller sexually abused them when they were children and teens more than 20 years ago.

Prices Climb, Turnover Persists for Rent-Controlled Units, Report Finds
April 20, 2023 -- Move-in prices for Santa Monica's rent-controlled units -- which have seen a high turnover rate -- climbed to record levels last year as fewer tenants moved out, according to annual Rent Control data released last week.

Council Unaware of AI Camera Programs
April 19, 2023 -- Two pilot programs using AI-equipped cameras are being launched by City staff without the approval of Councilmembers, some of whom have concerns but generally back the programs.

School District to Transition to 100 Percent Green Power
April 19, 2023 -- The School District is transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy after a rise in Southern California Edison's (SCE) base price made the move more attractive, District officials said Tuesday.

EXTRA -- Council Could Require Gender-neutral Public Restrooms in New Buildings
April 18, 2023 -- New buildings in Santa Monica will be required to provide gender-neutral public restrooms under an ordinance the City Council is will take up on Tuesday.

Major Improvements to Begin Along Wilshire
April 18, 2023 -- Work is set to begin May 1 on major improvements to Wislhire Boulevard meant to cut down on traffic collisions and enhance transit service, City officials announced Tuesday.

City Tests AI Cameras to Deter Unwanted Behavior
April 17, 2023 -- The City of Santa Monica will soon begin testing the use of AI-equipped cameras to monitor "unwanted incidents" at the Main Library and issue parking tickets along the bus route to LAX.

Hotel, Shared Mobility Company Win Top Sustainability Awards
April 17, 2023 -- A hotel near the Pier and a company that rents shared bikes and scooters have won Santa Monica's top sustainability awards, City officials announced Monday.

Councilmember Items Back on the Agenda
April 14, 2023 -- More than one and a half years after the City Council took steps to curb the flood of items Council members place on the agenda, the practice continues.

Virginia Park Could Be Renamed After Local Civil Rights Leader
April 13, 2023 -- The City Council early Wednesday morning was poised to kick off a process to rename the Pico Branch Library at Virginia Avenue Park after Santa Monica entrepreneur and Civil Rights activist Lloyd C. Allen.

School District Seeks Candidates for Financial Oversight Committee
April 12, 2023 -- The volunteer committee that reviews matters that could significantly impact School District finances before the School Board takes action is seeking qualified candidates.

Council Votes to Draft Minimum Wage Law for Health Care Workers
April 12, 2023 -- The City Council directed staff shortly after midnight Tuesday to draft a minimum wage ordinance for health care workers that one Council member acknowledged could be "irrelevant."

Combating Racism Together Is Theme of Community Events Next Month
April 11, 2023 -- Heather McGhee's best-selling book -- "The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together" -- about the shared costs of racism will be the theme of a number of events in Santa Monica next month.

City Has Spent More than $1.7 Million in Legal Fees in Uller Sex Abuse Cases
April 11, 2023 -- The City has paid more than $1.7 million in legal fees to outside attorneys for services related to sexual abuse cases involving former City employee Eric Uller, a public records request revealed Tuesday.

Santa Monica Could Set Minimum Wage for Healthcare Workers
April 10, 2023 -- The City Council Tuesday night is expected to take the initial step to set a minimum wage for healthcare workers of at least $25 per hour, nearly $9 higher than Santa Monica's current minumum wage.

County Health Recommends Booster Shots for All, Bucking Trend
April 10, 2023 -- LA County Health officials are continuing to recommend COVID booster shots for all residents 6 months and older, bucking a growing trend to restrict the shot to those most at risk of becoming severely ill.

Armed Robbery, Attempted Carjacking at Beach Tuesday Night
April 5, 2023 -- Four suspects were arrested for armed robbery and two wanted for an attempted carjacking remain at large in two separate incidents at Santa Monica Beach Tuesday night.

Behemoth Returns to Santa Monica
April 5, 2023 -- What's green, has two heads and weighs more than 6,000 pounds?

Proposal Would Allow Use of Vouchers for Shared Housing
April 4, 2023 -- Section 8 vouchers could be used to rent rooms in shared housing under a proposed change to Santa Monica's housing administrative plan.

SMC to Showcase New Malibu Campus
April 4, 2023 -- Nearly seven years after passing one of its last major hurdles, Santa Monica College's new Malibu campus will hold an open house this month to showcase the three-acre campus that has been 20 years in the making.

Monthly Poll Reflects Little Confidence in New City Department
April 3, 2023 -- A monthly poll of civically engaged Santa Monica residents taken last week found that nearly two-thirds don't believe a new City department created to reduce homelessness will succeed.

3 Residents, Dog Jump in Pool to Escape Fire
April 3, 2023 -- Three residents and a dog escaped an apartment fire in Santa Monica Sunday morning by jumping into the complex's pool, Fire Department officials said.

Few Qualify for Much Touted 'Right to Return' Program
March 31, 2023 -- A total of 11 applicants have qualified for Santa Monica's nationally publicized "Right to Return" program that gives priority for affordable housing to households displaced from the city's Black and Latino neighborhoods more than 60 years ago.

DMV Becomes State's Leading Voter Registration Source
March 30, 2023 -- A statewide automatic registration program implemented five years ago has quickly turned the DMV into the most commonly used vehicle for registering voters in California, according to a report released Thursday.

Event Celebrates 'The Godmother of Santa Monica'
March 30, 2023 -- Overshadowed in her lifetime by her two husbands, Arcadia Bandini arguably became more famous than both and put her permanent stamp on Santa Monica.

Battle Lines Drawn Over State Housing Bill
March 29, 2023 -- A State housing bill that would extend and expand a key "builder's remedy" provision tested in Santa Monica cleared its first hurdle last week as opponents prepare to mount a counter-attack at the ballot box.

SMC Presents 'Race Relay – Santa Monica'
March 29, 2023 -- A live, multimedia, interactive presentation at Santa Monica College (SMC) this week will explore the many faces of racism through personal stories and a community dialogue.

School District Spending More than $5 Million to Repair Rain-Damaged Buildings
March 28, 2023 -- Record-breaking rains have left School District officials scrambling to fix more than 110 existing leaks in waterlogged buildings, officials said in a letter this week.

Santa Monica Rents Rise After Declining 6 Months
March 28, 2023 -- Santa Monica rents rose for the first time in seven months, as the national rental market appears to be returning to conditions before the coronavirus shutdown, according to Apartment List's latest monthly report released Tuesday.

Council Takes Major Step to Meet State-Mandated Housing Quota
March 27, 2023 -- The City Council last week approved zoning changes to implement the City’s State-Certified Housing Element while attempting to preserve what is left of Santa Monica's seaside character.

Are You Prepared for a Tsunami?
March 27, 2023 -- If you feel the earth shake and hear the ocean roar, head inland or seek higher ground and follow the "Tsunami Evacuation Route" signs posted on roads near the coast.

Westside Food Bank Warns of 'Hunger Cliff'
March 24, 2023 -- With California poised at the edge of a "Hunger Cliff," the Westside Food Bank (WSFB) is bracing for a surge in the need for food starting next week, according to the Santa Monica-based non-profit.

New COVID Workplace Requirements Kick In
March 24, 2023 -- While Los Angeles County remained in the Low COVID-19 Community Level for the 10th consecutive week, workplaces -- including schools -- must adhere to new California OSHA requirements, Health officials said Friday.

Little Progress Moving Needle Exchange Program Indoors
March 23, 2023 -- More than six months after former Mayor Sue Himmelrich requested that the County move a program that hands out clean needles to drug users indoors, the effort has reached a standstill.

Council Approves Modified BBB Contract with SMC
March 23, 2023 -- With fewer in-person classes on campus, Santa Monica College (SMC) will pay less than half of its pre-pandemic cost for students, faculty and staff to ride the Big Blue Bus for free.

Majority of Council "Offended" By Street Vendor Discussion
March 22, 2023 -- A seemingly innocuous item on Tuesday's agenda calling for better communication with street vendors triggered a heated debate that managed to offend the majority of the City Council.

Police Bust Apparent Cell Phone Theft Ring
March 21, 2023 -- A missing phone ringing inside a car in the parking lot of a Main Street nightspot led police to more than 20 phones stolen by what appears to be an organized theft ring of Columbian nationals.

Loews Hotel, Union Reach Agreement for Laid Off Workers
March 21, 2023 -- The 320 hotel workers laid off for the renovation of the Loews Santa Monica Hotel will receive recall rights, free family health insurance and pension contributions during the expected nine-month closure, union officials announced Monday.

City Could Face Lawsuit Over New Gun Licensing Fee
March 20, 2023 -- A gun rights advocacy group is threatening to challenge Santa Monica's "ridiculous" concealed carry weapon (CCW) licensing fees, arguing they discourage residents from exercising their second amendment rights.

Two Stabbed in Early Morning Fight Sunday
March 20, 2023 -- Two victims were hospitalized with stab wounds after a fight broke out between two groups at the northern end of Palisades Park in the early hours of Sunday morning, according to police.

Flu Joins COVID in LA County This Season
March 17, 2023 -- There have been an estimated 540 flu-related deaths in Los Angeles County since October, with California experiencing the greatest number of per capita cases in the nation, according to the latest local and national health data.

Homeless Man Charged in Series of Sexual Assaults
March 17, 2023 -- A homeless man was charged Thursday with a series of nighttime sexual assaults on homeless women late last summer, including one in Santa Monica, according to police.

SPECIAL REPORT -- Why Homeless Knife Attacks Have Increased in Santa Monica
March 16, 2023 -- A dangerous mix of legal knives, illegal drugs and lenient State laws are likely driving a surge in stabbings among the homeless in Santa Monica, according to police.

Homeless Man Stabs City Worker in Palisades Park
March 16, 2023 -- A City worker was stabbed by a homeless man he tried to rouse from his sleep Wednesday morning in Palisades Park, according to police.

Council Sets Fees for Concealed Carry Weapon Licenses
March 15, 2023 -- Santa Monica residents will pay $617 for a concealed carry weapon (CCW) license after the LA County Sheriff's Department (LASD), which charged $150, stopped processing them for the city.

Santa Monica Review Celebrates 35th Year
March 15, 2023 -- Santa Monica College's (SMC) literary journal celebrates its 35th anniversary with an eclectic issue that will be showcased at three events and a reading.

EXTRA -- After 7 Years, Voting Rights Lawsuit Could Be Decided Soon
March 14, 2023 -- Nearly two-and-a-half years after the California Supreme Court took up a 2016 voting rights lawsuit against the City, the closely watched case is likely coming to an end.

SMC Training Programs Win Exemplary Award
March 14, 2023 -- Two certified healthcare training programs at Santa Monica College (SMC) have been recognized as nationwide models by the National Council for Continuing Education and Training (NCCET).

Council Creates Department to Focus on Housing and Homelessness
March 13, 2023 -- After once again declaring homelessness its top priority, the City Council on Saturday unanimously directed staff to create a new department and allocate new tax dollars to tackle the persistent problem.

Man Injured After Narrowly Escaping Motel Blaze
March 13, 2023 -- A man was hospitalized Saturday after "narrowly" escaping an early afternoon blaze at the Holiday Motel & Suites in Santa Monica, where he lived, Fire Department officials reported.

County Relaxes Coronavirus Guidelines
March 10, 2023 -- Coronavirus cases in Santa Monica and LA County continued dropping as Public Health officials announced Monday the County will relax its guidelines to align with the State.

Homeless Man Charged with Attempted Murder in Hate Crime Attacks
March 10, 2023 -- A homeless man was charged with assault and attempted murder on Wednesday after attacking three Black victims with a metal pipe one week ago.

3 City Owned Parking Lots Earmarked for Affordable Housing
March 9, 2023 -- The City Council is poised to set aside three surface parking lots in the Mid-City Neighborhood for low-income housing, bringing Santa Monica a step closer to meeting its State-mandated housing goal.

War, Big Tech and Black Horror at SMC Literary Series
March 9, 2023 -- A rising Black author, an expert on "Tech Goliaths" and a top commander in the Gulf War are among the "noteworthy spectrum" of writers featured in Santa Monica College's (SMC) Literary Series this spring.

Electrification Roadmap Just a Start, City Officials Say
March 8, 2023 -- When the City released a "roadmap" to electrify existing buildings, the document -- touted in a press release -- caught many residents and property owners by surprise.

Police Seek Help Unraveling January Crash, Beating
March 8, 2023 -- Santa Monica police are trying to unravel the beating of a woman found in a crashed jeep in January who says she has no memory of what happened.

Crypto Ponzi Scheme Targets Local Latino Investors
March 7, 2023 -- A consumer alert issued by the City Tuesday warns that Latino households in Santa Monica are being targeted by a crypto Ponzi scheme at the center of a federal enforcement action.

City Revenues to Take Five Years to Recover
March 7, 2023 -- Santa Monica's economy is "showing signs of softening" and revenues are not expected to fully recover for another five years, according to a recent report to the City Council.

Transitioning to Electricity Could Cost Property Owners Up to $1 Billion
March 6, 2023 -- Given the age of Santa Monica's building stock, it will likely cost property owners between $500 million and $1 billion to electrify all existing buildings, according to a cost analysis by the City.

Health State of Emergency Ended With Little Fanfare
March 3, 2023 -- The coronavirus emergency declared by the State, County and City three years ago quietly terminated at 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday without any official announcement that a landmark moment had been reached.

Construction of Nearly 700 Housing Units Kicks Off
March 2, 2023 -- Tishman Speyer broke ground Monday on a senior building that launches the initial phase of the "Santa Monica Collection" development, which in total will add 677 housing units at eight Downtown sites.

Police Arrest Motorcyclist Involved in Road Rage Robbery and Assault
March 2, 2023 -- Santa Monica detectives accompanied by SWAT officers arrested a man at his Compton home Thursday for an assault with a deadly weapon and robbery that took place during a road rage incident last summer, according to police.

SPECIAL REPORT -- City Report Weighs Pros and Cons of Driverless Cars
March 1, 2023 -- As the first entirely driverless car in LA County prepares to hit Santa Monica streets this month, the City's top transit official released a report on the local status of autonomous vehicles (AVs).

Monthly Poll Finds Strong Support for LA's "Inside Safe" Homeless Program
March 1, 2023 -- A monthly poll of Santa Monica residents found the vast majority wants the City to follow Los Angeles' more "aggressive" approach to tackling homelessness.

Santa Monica Rents Drop for 6th Straight Month
February 28, 2023 -- Santa Monica rents dipped by -0.7 percent in February, marking the sixth straight monthly drop, with the median rent now standing at $2,157, according to a report released by Apartment List on Tuesday.

Social Justice Lecture Series at SMC Offers Eclectic Lineup
February 28, 2023 -- What do Marilyn Monroe and the Pico Neighborhood have in common? The theme of social justice, which will be explored during a lecture series at Santa Monica College this spring.

EXTRA -- Santa Monica Releases 'Roadmap' for Existing Buildings to Go All Electric
February 27, 2023 -- Santa Monica on Monday published an "Electrification Roadmap" that would eventually require property owners to transition from gas to electric before they can rent, sell or make major renovations to existing buildings.

Pacific Park's Sea Dragon Takes Final Bow
February 27, 2023 -- Pacific Park's 27-year-old Sea Dragon is retiring after making a splash in movies, videos and starring in a children's book, park officials announced Monday.

Wary Council Discusses Ways to Tweak Housing Plan
February 24, 2023 -- The City Council trod carefully on Tuesday when discussing how to implement its housing plan, fearing that any changes viewed as restricting development could incur the wrath of the State.

Picasso Meets Einstein at the Ruskin Theater
February 24, 2024 -- Actor and director Steve Martin's first full-length play -- which chronicles a fantasy meeting between Einstein and Picasso in 1904 -- opens at the Ruskin Theater in Santa Monica tonight.

Santa Monica to Add 15 Electric Buses
February 23, 2023 -- Santa Monica's Big Blue Bus (BBB) is poised to add as many as 15 battery electric buses, helping it transition its fleet to zero emissions buses by 2030.

No Citations Issued During "Shoulder Tap" Operation
February 23, 2023 -- A police sting operation this month to nab adults who buy alcohol for minors resulted in no citations, according to the Police Department.

Exercise, Eat and Dance at the Promenade This Spring
February 22, 2023 -- Visitors to the Promenade this spring can sample unique foods, sweat off the calories and dance like like no one is watching on select weekends this spring.

Suggestion to Transfer Housing to Palmdale "Immoral and Repulsive," Former Mayor Says
February 22, 2023 -- Preliminary talks with Palmdale officials to transfer some of Santa Monica's housing quota for cash would likely require funding from a ballot measure whose sponsor calls the fledgling proposal an "abomination."

Palmdale Council Votes to Explore Housing Deal With Santa Monica
February 21, 2023 -- (UPDATED) A skeptical Palmdale City Council last week voted to continue conversations with Santa Monica City officials to build State-mandated housing in the inland city in exchange for cash.

Santa Monica College Invites Public to Dance
February 21, 2023 -- If the music moves you, you may want to develop your dancing skills at a series of classes and learning workshops at Santa Monica College (SMC) this spring.

Police Arrest Parolee for Armed Carjacking
February 17, 2023 -- A carjacking at a beach parking lot Thursday evening led to a police chase, a collision with multiple vehicles and a helicopter search for a suspect who remains at large, police said.

New Wavelengths, Launching the Dragon and Space Weather at the SMC Planetarium
February 17, 2023 -- The Santa Monica College (SMC) John Drescher Planetarium will update two new space missions and take a focused look at Earth's "Evil Twin Sister" during a series of free live shows next month.

Fewer Officers Tackling More Crime, Chief Tells Council
February 16, 2023 -- Facing a serious staffing shortage, Santa Monica police are initiating more calls for service, as both crime and arrests are on the rise, Police Chief Ramon Batista told the City Council Tuesday.

Boards and Commissions to Meet in Person
February 16, 2023 -- After three years meeting remotely, Santa Monica Boards and Commissions will begin holding in-person meetings next month, City officials announced Thursday.

North of Montana 7th Most Expensive Zip Code in U.S.
February 15, 2023 -- North of Montana was the 7th priciest zip code in the U.S. last year with a median home sale price of $4.378 million, according to a ranking released this week by

Council Votes to Declare Homelessness Emergency
February 15, 2023 -- The City Council Tuesday night unanimously voted to declare a Local Emergency on Homelessness that will boost funding and speed up hiring to address a worsening crisis.

No Reliable Data to Support Key Housing Number
February 14, 2023 -- The data used to approve City policies, establish financial support programs and pass tax measures for "severely rent-burdened" households is wildly inaccurate.

Council Caught in a Tight Spot on Development
February 13, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday will face a volatile political dilemma -- change the unique nature of Santa Monica's four Neighborhood Commercial (NC) districts or open the floodgates to virtually unchecked State-sanctioned development.

Pacific Park Wheel Reels With Love
February 13, 2023 -- One of LA's most romantic places will light up with symbols of love for Valentine's Day in Santa Monica.

County Remains at Low COVID Community Level Despite Fast-Spreading Subvariant
February 10, 2023 -- A highly contagious COVID subvariant that has not resulted in an increase in hospitalizations and deaths is now the dominant strain in Los Angeles County, health officials said Friday.

EXTRA -- Santa Monica Set to Declare Homelessness Emergency
February 9, 2023 -- The City Council on Tuesday is expected to declare a state of emergency on homelessness that will make it easier to address a crisis that has persisted for decades and is worsening.

SMC to Launch New Equity-Centered Biotech Program with $1 Milllion Grant
February 9, 2023 -- Santa Monica College (SMC) will launch a new "equity-centered" biotech career program to help fill a growing demand for "cancer-fighting scientists" in the region, school officials said.

Bloom Makes Move from Legislator to Judge
February 8, 2023 -- Former Santa Monica Mayor Richard Blooom -- who rose from neighborhood activist to influential Assemblymember -- has been appointed as a Judge in the Los Angeles County Superior Court.

Miramar Match Helps Ed Foundation Raise Nearly $250,000
February 8, 2023 -- A $25,000 match from the Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows and its owner MSD Partners spurred 372 donors to give $236,940 to the Education Foundation last month.

County Approves Record Budget to Fight Homelessness
February 7, 2023 -- One month after declaring a state of emergency on homelessness, the LA County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a record $609.7 million budget to tackle the growing crisis and allocated an additional $76.9 million.

Santa Monica History Museum to Provide Free Admission to Low-Income Visitors
February 7, 2023 -- Those receiving food assistance (SNAP) benefits can now visit the Santa Monica History Museum for free as part of a nationwide program to attract low-income visitors.

Developer Scores $375 Million Financing to Develop Vons Downtown Site
February 6, 2023 -- One day after Vons market closed its doors, Related California announced Monday it has secured $375 million in financing to build a 280-unit apartment development on the prime Downtown site.

City Hires Cultural Manager with Eclectic Background
February 6, 2023 -- The City of Santa Monica has tapped the vice president of a design and architecture podcast with a degree in electronic music composition as its new Cultural Affairs manager.

Workplan Outlines City's Efforts Tackling Homelessness
February 3, 2023 -- During the last three months of 2022, the City issued 14 emergency housing vouchers, provided medical and psychiatric services to 478 homeless individuals and issued 1,047 sleeping violations in public parks, according to the latest Homelessness Workplan report.

County Urges Boosters as COVID Wanes
February 3, 2023 -- LA County Health officials are urging more than 4 million residents to get the latest booster shot regardless of their health condition amid a drop in COVID hospitalizations and deaths.

Two Men Charged for Armed Robbery in September
February 2, 2022 -- Two men were arraigned on Wednesday after Santa Monica detectives tracked them down -- one in court and the other in jail for unrelated cases.

Miramar Development Plan

Santa Monica Realtor Sullivan Dituri. Link:
Sullivan-Dituri Real Estate
2111 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica CA 90403
Tel: 310.453.3341

Santa Monica College
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Bay Cities Italian Deli,
food and groceries.
Call: (310) 395-8279
1517 Lincoln Blvd.
Santa Monica

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