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Monthly Poll Gauges Downtown Safety, Proof of Vaccination
By Jorge Casuso
September 27, 2021 -- As the City Council prepares to take steps Tuesday to hasten Downtown's economic recovery, a poll of involved Santa Monica residents found most respondents don't believe enough is being done to keep the area safe.
The monthly Santa Monica Pulse survey released Monday and conducted between September 17 and 23 found that 73 percent of the approximately 170 residents polled believe more could be done to keep the area safe.
Another 12 percent said enough is being done, while 15 percent weren't sure, according to the poll sent via text by the hotel union watchdog group Eyes on Local 11.
The poll was conducted after Councilmember Phil Brock placed an item on the September 14 agenda asking staff to review safety and security measures in the area of the Promenade, where some merchants and residents complain the homeless have become entrenched.
The issue will be taken up again Tuesday night, as well as at a meeting Wednesday hosted by Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. (DTSM), where police officials will release crime statistics and discuss crime-fighting measures.
The meeting will take place from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Santa Monica Place.
The item was one of eight placed by Councilmembers on the September 14 agenda, furthering a trend that prompted the Council to take steps to curb their use ("Council Takes Steps to Curb Own Agenda Items," September 17, 2021).
The poll asked if Councilmember items "are an effective way to raise concerns to the City Council." Sixty percent of those who responded to the Pulse poll were not sure. Some 32 percent said yes, while about 8 percent said no.
The high percentage of those who are unsure could indicate "many residents are unfamiliar with this Council protocol," according to Eyes on Local 11, which began conducting the brief monthly poll in February.
The poll also asked residents about another Councilmember item introduced by Brock that asked staff to draft a noise ordinance that would limit amplified sound, specifically music, in public parks.
When asked if such an ordinance should also include "other forms of potentially disruptive noise, including loud speakers or bull horns," 55 percent said yes. Another 30 percent said no, while 15 percent were not sure.
Residents are almost evenly divided over requirements to show proof of vaccination at indoor bars, wineries, breweries, lounges and nightclubs in Los Angeles County.
Half of those polled oppose the policy, another 47 percent support it, while 3 percent were unsure.
The response reflects a similar question in last month's poll that found residents were split on implementing a vaccine mandate in Santa Monica for City employees and for indoor public spaces.
As with previous polls, the latest Santa Monica Pulse poll was sent to some 1,000 residents who "previously opted in to receive more information on education efforts surrounding crime and safety in their city." It had a response rate of 17 percent.
Those who wish to be included in the next poll, should email their name and cell phone number to SaMoPulse@gmail.com. To view the poll results
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