archiveSanta Monica Lookoutline
The Santa Monica Lookout, Santa Monica, California -- May 2013

Council Members Seek to Halt Tall Buildings in Downtown Santa Monica
May 31, 2013 -- Three City Council members are seeking a fourth vote for a motion that would place a moratorium on all development in Downtown Santa Monica that exceeds the current height limits.

Santa Monica College Students Shine Spotlight on Women Vets
May 31, 2013 -- As the war in Afghanistan winds down, many women soldiers are returning home to realize that their battles are far from over.

22nd Annual Santa Monica Festival to be Held Saturday
May 31, 2013 -- Santa Monica will showcase its culture and diversity and celebrate its status one of Southern California’s most innovative cities during the 22nd annual Santa Monica Festival, City officials said.

City Council Reviews Santa Monica's Half Billion Dollar Budget
May 30, 2013 -- An impending structural deficit was the major concern aired during a four-hour City Council study session Tuesday, as the council began reviewing Santa Monica's proposed $520.9 million annual budget Tuesday.

Santa Monica Moves Ahead with Plans for Dream Site Eyed by the State
May 30, 2013 -- Three years after its purchase, the process of turning the largest undeveloped City-owned parcel in Downtown Santa Monica into a new town center is well under way despite the prospect of a state-mandated sale.

Santa Monica Seeks Applicants for Boards and Commissions
May 30, 2013 -- If you’ve pondered serving your city as a volunteer, now is the chance to apply for nearly three dozen vacancies on Santa Monica’s boards and commissions.

Proposed Projects Could Help Bridge Looming Budget Gap, But at What Cost?
May 29, 2013 -- Santa Monica will see a balanced budget for the next two years, but a daunting $13 million deficit looms on the horizon. So does a key question: should the City encourage development to help get it out of the financial hole?

Santa Monica High School Gets New Principals
May 29, 2013 -- Santa Monica High School will welcome three new principals after the School Board approved the administrators' appointments this month.

Santa Monica Fire Department to Offer Free Hands-Only CPR Training
May 29, 2013 -- Sudden cardiac arrests often take place at home or in public, and when they do, only one-third of the victims get CPR from a bystander, often leading to unnecessary death.

Downtown Santa Monica Officials Call for More Height, Density for Projects
May 28, 2013 -- The Downtown Santa Monica Inc.(DTSM) Board voted Thursday to advocate for higher density and height in the commercial heart of the city and to allow for flexibility on eight opportunity sites.

Santa Monica Rent Control Board Postpones Trailer Park Decision Again
May 28, 2013 -- The stalemate over a mixed-use development on the site of one of Santa Monica's two remaining trailer parks will continue for another two months after the Rent Control Board tabled a final decision again last week.

Santa Monica Conservancy Offers Tour of Award-winning Gems
May 28, 2013 -- The Santa Monica Conservancy will offer a chance to stroll through the city’s past when it opens five award-winning historic places for public visits Sunday.

New Santa Monica Memorial Plans on View Monday
May 24, 2013 -- The 75th annual Memorial Day service Monday at Santa Monica's Woodlawn Cemetery will feature the unveiling of a new memorial for Santa Monicans who have died in wars since the City's founding in 1875.

Santa Monica College Student Takes Tough Road to National Scholarship
May 24, 2013 -- When Santa Monica College student Scott Pine arrived at a Manhattan penthouse last month for an Alumni Association reception, he was there as one of the school’s 13 student ambassador.

Good Taste -- Santa Monica Bistro Stands Test of Time
May 24, 2013 -- The other day, I was visiting a friend who recently had a baby at Saint John's Hospital. She was sleeping and not seeing visitors. I decided I would grab some lunch and come back. I agreed to meet my associate at a place that was walking distance to Saint John's to discuss business with a potential client.

Exclusive: Santa Monica Hopes to Protect “Dream Site” from State
May 23, 2013 -- As Redevelopment Agencies (RDAs) unwind throughout California, the State is threatening to force Santa Monica to sell part of a once-in-a-generation “dream site” in the heart of Downtown.

Santa Monica's Rent Control Board to Tackle New Development
May 23, 2013 -- After postponing a decision last month, Santa Monica's Rent Control Board will vote Thursday on whether to allow the East Village development to go forward.

Santa Monica College to Offer “Build Your Own Summer Camp”
May 23, 2013 -- Do you send your kid to Chinese Boot Camp or Spanish Boot Camp? Should they spend time this summer learning film or photography? Exercising by boxing or toning with Zumba?

Public Safety, Pension Top Santa Monica's Budget Costs
May 22, 2013 -- Santa Monica will spend some $150 million for public safety and for employee pensions -- nearly half of the General Fund expenses -- under a proposed budget unveiled Monday for the upcoming fiscal year, which starts July 1.

Jackson Browne Helps Raise Funds for Santa Monica-Malibu Schools
May 22, 2013 -- Two shows this weekend headlined by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee Jackson Browne raised more than $125,000 to benefit arts programs in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District.

Electric Cars and Emergency Radio Top Santa Monica City Council's Consent Calendar
May 22, 2013 -- The Santa Monica City Council is expected to spend nearly half a million dollars for ten electric cars and another quarter million for a rooftop emergency system when it takes up its consent calendar Tuesday.

Pension Costs to Put Santa Monica in Red
May 21, 2013 -- While Santa Monica can balance its budget over the next two years, it will likely face a $13 million deficit by 2017 due to rising pension costs and the end of its Redevelopment Agency (RDA), according to the City's proposed budget released Monday.

Santa Monica Place Overhaul Wins Major Award
May 21, 2013 -- Santa Monica Place has won the 2013 Best-of-the-Best VIVA Global Design and Development Award for its ambitious redevelopment of the indoor mall designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry in 1980.

Runners Rally to Heal Santa Monica Bay
May 21, 2013 -- Thousands of runners thronged to Santa Monica's coastline Sunday morning to race to save the bay.

Providence Tapped to Take Over Santa Monica’s Saint John’s Hospital
May 20, 2013 -- The owners of Saint John’s Health Center announced Friday that they had entered into exclusive negotiations with Providence Health & Services to take over the Santa Monica institution.

Saint John's Hospital Says It Has Enough Parking
May 20, 2013 -- Saint John's Health Center rejected Santa Monica City officials' claim that it doesn't provide enough parking to meet the requirements of its Development Agreement (DA).

Santa Monica's Esplanade Gets Green Light
May 20, 2013 -- A $10.7 million plan to revamp Colorado Avenue west of Fifth Street to accommodate passengers at the future Expo Light Rail line terminal got the unanimous approval of the City Council last week.

Santa Monicans Get Rowdy at Miramar Redevelopment Meeting
May 17, 2013 -- A routine meeting erupted into chaos Thursday night when opponents of a proposed $225 million redevelopment project for the Fairmont Miramar Hotel demanded the floor to speak.

Santa Monica Council Approves Sidewalk Repairs
May 17, 2013 -- A $2.4 million contract to repair Santa Monica’s streets and sidewalks topped the consent calendar approved by the City Council Tuesday night, followed by a $234,433 contract to buy nine police motorcycles.

Police Apprehend Santa Monica College Student after Shooting Threat
May 17, 2013 -- Santa Monica College and two adjacent schools were placed on lockdown Thursday after a college student threatened to shoot up the school and kill himself, according to Santa Monica Police.

Saint John’s Foundation Endorses Bid by Los Angeles’ Richest Resident
May 16, 2013 -- The Saint John’s Health Center Foundation threw its weight Wednesday behind a bid by its largest donor to buy the 61-year-old center from the SCL (Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth) Health System.

Corporations Are Not People, Says Santa Monica City Council
May 16, 2013 -- The Santa Monica City Council voted Tuesday night to throw its weight behind a movement to deny corporations constitutional protections.

City Council OKs Free Rides for Santa Monica College Students
May 16, 2013 -- For the fifth year in a row, Santa Monica College (SMC) students and employees will ride the Big Blue Bus (BBB) for free, after the City Council approved a $1.3 million contract between the college and the bus company Tuesday.

Landmark Status for Santa Monica's Last Bowling Alley Could Block Development
May 15, 2013 -- With a four-story mixed use development poised to replace Santa Monica's last remaining bowling alley, the Landmarks Commission voted Monday to consider designating the 55 year-old building a landmark.

Santa Monica Wins Kudos for Bike Initiatives
May 15, 2013 -- Two major bicycle advocacy groups recognized Santa Monica this week for its efforts to get people pedaling in the beachside city.

Good Taste --Quelling My Craving for Awesome Mexican Food at Casa Martin
May 15, 2013 -- I missed my traditional Cinco De Mayo meal, due to an event I was managing that night that had nothing to do with the holiday. So last week, I was still craving something Mexican. A burrito, a couple of tacos, a quesadilla. Any of those would do.

Special Expo Edition
Expo Line Takes Shape in Santa Monica

May 14, 2013 -- A little more than a year after construction started on Phase II of the Expo Line, Los Angeles' newest mass transit project is already making a visible impact on Santa Monica.

Expo Changes Real Estate Game in Santa Monica
May 14, 2013 -- With the coming Expo Light Rail, so too comes the promise of easier, traffic-free commutes from Downtown Los Angeles to Downtown Santa Monica.

Expo Construction Shuts Down Santa Monica Streets This Week 
May 14, 2013 -- Major construction projects are paving the way for the Expo Light Rail line as it rolls closer to Santa Monica, and several construction projects will affect the flow of traffic this week, City officials said.

To Preserve Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, Revise Specific Plan, Says Expert Panel
May 13, 2013 -- In order to save the Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica should develop the land around the 55 year-old venue to pay for the more than $50 million needed in repairs and upgrades.

Santa Monica Convention and Visitors Bureau Sees Global Gold
May 13, 2013 -- Nearly 60 percent of Santa Monica’s overnight guests last year were from foreign countries, and the number is growing thanks to the use of new tools and initiatives to tap a global market, officials at the 4th annual Travel & Tourism Summit said Thursday.

Santa Monica Women’s Commission Seeks Applicants
May 13, 2013 -- The Santa Monica Commission on the Status of Women -- which is actively implementing its 2010-2015 Strategic Plan -- is seeking applicants for openings starting July 1.

Santa Monica's Longest-Running Apartment Construction Still Stalled
May 10, 2013 -- In April 2012, Naren Desai, the owner of a small parcel in midtown Santa Monica, was hopeful that a construction project he started 15 years ago would move past the remaining hurdles necessary and that he would be finished.

City Council to Look at Revised Plans for Santa Monica Esplanade
May 10, 2013 -- The Santa Monica City Council will vote Tuesday whether to approve the final design of the Colorado Esplanade, which staff revised after the loss of redevelopment (RDA) money halved its funding.

Santa Monica College Seeks Applicants for Bond Committee
May 10, 2013 -- Santa Monica College is seeking applicants for the Citizens Bond Oversight Committee that oversees the implementation of three bond measures that are funding capital improvement projects at the college.
The vacancies are specifically for representatives of the local business communities of Santa Monica and Malibu, although applications for additional members are encouraged.

OPINION: Santa Monica Council Should Oppose “Absurd” and “Dangerous” Constitutional Amendment
May 10, 2013 -- “How can the City achieve and maintain its goal to be “business friendly” or promote economic growth if, at the same time, it is encouraging the adoption of a constitutional amendment denying business owners basic constitutional rights? How can it claim to be a progressive and open society while supporting the suppression of robust public discussion?”

Santa Monica Council Could Lobby to Change Tax Law
May 9, 2013 -- The Santa Monica City Council will weigh-in Tuesday on whether the State should close a tax loophole that is saving the Fairmont Miramar $1 million a year in property taxes.

Santa Monica College Wins Sustainability Award
May 9, 2013 -- Santa Monica College won the statewide annual Energy and Sustainability Awards competition for its efforts to make its facilities and operations more green, college officials announced Wednesday.

Good Taste -- Bikes and Mexican Food Help Kick off Santa Monica Bike
May 9, 2013 -- It was raining when I woke up. Pouring. Bummer. I was invited to an event at the Santa Monica Pier that involved lunch and a launch of a new E-Bike -- the first of its kind in the U.S. -- and I was worried that event would be cancelled, due to the rain. It was still sprinkling when I was driving the 405 South from Los Angeles, heading to Santa Monica.

How Santa Monica's Rent Control Agency Spends Its Money
May 8, 2013 -- As Santa Monica's Rent Control Board considers a 15 percent hike in registration fees to avoid a looming $500,000 deficit, some are concerned about where that money is going.

Santa Monica to Offer Citizens Academy to Boost Civic Participation
May 8, 2013 -- One day after more than 350 residents packed a spirited public meeting to discuss height and density guidelines for Santa Monica’s Downtown, City officials announced a new program to increase community involvement.

Free Pic and Ride for Mom Sunday at Pacific Park 
May 8, 2013 -- On Sunday, the first 1,000 moms to arrive at Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier will get a free family photo and Ferris wheel ride to make their 2013 Mother’s Day something to remember.

Residents Air Worries Over Height in Downtown Santa Monica
May 7, 2013 -- The mood was emotional -- and at times confrontational -- Monday night as residents filled the east wing of the Civic Center to weigh in on the future of development in Downtown Santa Monica.

LUCE Won't Fix Santa Monica's Housing Imbalance, Neighborhood Activist Says
May 7, 2013 -- Valerie Griffin, the former chair of the Wilmont Neighborhood Coalition, released an analysis of Santa Monica's Land Use and Circulation Element Wednesday that claims the plan fails to address the City's jobs-housing imbalance, especially in the Bergamot Area.

British Invade Downtown Santa Monica
May 7, 2013 -- Downtown Santa Monica took on a decidedly British bent last weekend as it held its first-ever Spring Jubilee to celebrate BritWeek.

Herb Alpert Sculptures to Become Signposts to Santa Monica’s Future
May 6, 2013 -- During the 1960s, Herb Alpert was world renown for his Tijuana Brass. Now, the trumpeter, composer and band leader is making a splash with his bronze sculptures.

Santa Monica Rent Control Board to Talk Fee Increase
May 6, 2013 -- Facing a $500,000 annual deficit, the Santa Monica Rent Control Board this week will continue to explore raising registration fees and having landlords for the first time pick up half of the cost.

New Formula Allows One Percent Rent Hike for Santa Monica Landlords
May 6, 2013 -- Beginning July 1, Santa Monica landlords can raise rents on controlled units by one percent as part of the annual General Adjustment (GA) approved by the Rent Control Board last month.

Santa Monica Bike Center Stays a Steady Course
May 3, 2013 -- After 18 months, Santa Monica's Bike Center - - the largest in the country - - is holding strong with more than 200 members using the facility on a regular basis.

Santa Monica Goes Bike Crazy in May
May 3, 2013 -- As part of National Bike Month, Santa Monica is challenging workers and residents to ditch their cars, including City staff, who are competing with Bike Center members and employees to see who can ride their bikes more.

Live Dan Brown Broadcast at Santa Monica Library
May 3, 2013 -- “What’s live in time but still not here where clocks chime three hours in arrears?” Answer: a live broadcast of author Dan Brown in New York at the Santa Monica Main Library.

Council Raises Landing Fees, Explores Partial Closure of Santa Monica Airport
May 2, 2013 -- After four hours of public comment and deliberation, the City Council voted unanimously to raise fees on planes landing at Santa Monica Airport (SMO), which the City currently subsidizes with General Fund money.

SMC Symposium Tackles Youth in Foster Care
May 2, 2013 -- Urban youth living in foster care will be the focus of a four-day symposium sponsored by the Santa Monica College Public Policy Institute, college officials announced Wednesday.

Good Taste: Ye Olde King's Head -- My Own Celebration of Brit Week
May 2, 2013 -- In celebration of Brit Week this week, I visited a Santa Monica Institution, Ye Olde King's Head, for drinks and appetizers.  A place for all things British, this authentic pub, restaurant and gift shop is a quaint and cozy spot to hang out.

Feds Investigate of Plane Crash, Santa Monica Airport Opponents Air Concerns
May 1, 2013 -- Federal officials are investigating a fatal mid-air collision Monday afternoon between two single-engine planes, one of which took off from Santa Monica Airport, that left two people dead and three injured.

Police Looking for Suspect in Marine Beating
May 1 , 2013 -- Police are looking for a man who punched and knocked out a U.S. Marine dancing at a Downtown Santa Monica nightclub shortly before midnight on February 22.

Santa Monica Businesses Need to Fix Their Signs, Officials Say
May 1, 2013 -- Santa Monica officials launched an education campaign last week to let local businesses know how their signs might be violating an ordinance that has been on the books since 1985 and that critics say has gone largely unenforced.

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