Santa Monica
Traditional Reporting for A Digital Age

The Santa Monica Lookout, Santa Monica, California -- SEPTEMBER 2022

Dem Club Membership Breaks with Tradition in 'Surprising Upset'
September 30, 2022 -- In a highly unusual move, Santa Monica's three most liberal groups are not in lockstep with their City Council endorsements, risking a takeover by a "conservative" majority.

Council Paves Way for All-Electric Future
September 30, 2020 -- Santa Monica took major strides toward an all-electric future Tuesday when the City Council approved policies that ban gas energy in all new construction and require developers to add EV chargers in multi-family buildings.

LETTERS -- A Case of Legislative Undersight
September 30, 2020 -- The State has come down firmly on the side of commercial, profit-driven businesses that have no obligation to ensure that residents will have the water and power they’ll need.

Santa Monica Rents Hold Steady in September
September 27, 2022 -- Rents held steady in Santa Monica this month as the median rent nationwide dipped for the first time since last December, according to Apartment List's monthly rent report released Tuesday.

LETTERS -- Drug Abuse Is Far from Victimless
September 27, 2022 -- Why is any local government normalizing and enabling addictive drug abuse by distributing syringes intended solely for injecting dangerous, illegal narcotics? Are these so-called leaders so empty-headed?

Local Coronavirus Cases Keep Dropping
September 26, 2022 -- After hitting a five-month low, coronavirus cases continued dropping in Santa Monica last week, although virus-related deaths continued to persist.

Thief Strikes Main Street Store
September 26, 2022 -- Shortly after 3 a.m. Saturday, a man rolled a garbage bin in front of Susu handbags on Main Street, smashed the front window and made off with more than $10,000 worth of merchandise.

UPDATE -- Sexual Assault Suspect Arrested at SMC
September 26, 2022 -- A suspected sexual predator who was luring female students from Santa Monica College's (SMC) main campus was arrested Monday morning, according to college police.

Negrete Target of First Election Hit Piece
September 23, 2022 -- The local hotel workers union fired the first attack of the 2022 Election season with a mailer targeting Councilmember Lana Negrete.

New Council Meeting Rules Could be Tested for Extra 3 Months
September 22, 2022 -- A test program to shorten City Council meetings and allow most public speakers to leave early could be extended an extra three months.

Major Donations Give Much-Needed Boost to Police Cadet Program
September 21, 2022 -- Four major Santa Monica-based businesses have donated a total of $400,000 to expand the Police Cadet Program decimated by budget cutbacks made during the coronavirus shutdown.

OPINION -- How Has Gelson's Project Gotten to This Stage?
September 22, 2022 -- The State’s mandate for more than 9,000 residential units is, in spirit and letter, intended to provide affordable housing. Yet 90 percent of Lincoln Center will be priced at market rates. That’s counterproductive.

Official Who Spearheaded City's Affordable Housing Efforts to Retire
September 20, 2022 -- Andy Agle -- who helped ensure more than 2,000 units were earmarked for low-income tenants and worked to acquire more than 20 acres of private land for the City -- will retire at the end of the year, City officials announced Tuesday.

Suicide Attempt, Juvenile Fight Lead to Hospitalizations
September 20, 2022 -- A suicide attempt near the pier Tuesday and a juvenile fight near Samohi on Monday led to two separate hospitalizations, according to police.

LETTERS -- Transparent Democracy
September 20, 2022 -- The process to enforce campaign finance irregularities takes time, and often voters don’t find out about even the most blatant violations until after the election, writes former Mayor Kevin McKeown.

EXTRA -- Transfer Tax Battle Could Shatter Fundraising Records
September 19, 2022 -- The battle over Mayor Sue Himmelrich's transfer tax measure promises to be a costly one, with a record-breaking fundraising advantage quickly erased with a single donation.

Local Weekly COVID Cases Drop Below 100, as Deaths Persist
September 19, 2022 -- Weekly coronavirus cases in Santa Monica dropped below 100 for the first time in five months, while local virus-related deaths rose, according to data from LA County Public Health.

Council Takes Steps to Boost Input from Section 8 Advisory Board
September 16, 2022 -- After a lengthy debate, the City Council on Tuesday unanimously voted to radically shrink -- and rename -- an advisory board comprised of Section 8 tenants to give it a stronger voice.

OPINION --Tragic Flight School Crash Reminder of Danger Posed by Airport
September 16, 2022 -- One thing Santa Monica Airport should absolutely not be used for is flying lessons. Among the more than 100 accidents since 1982 connected with the airport, 28 have involved student pilots.

Design Board to Review Another Tight-Fitting Downtown Project
September 15, 2022 -- A month after taking up a tight-fitting hotel project, Santa Monica's design board on Monday will review an affordable housing development that squeezes an eight-story 38-unit building into a single-family-sized lot Downtown.

Satellites and Sunspots at the SMC Planetarium
September 15, 2022 -- A fleet of satellites, increasing sunspots and a new lunar lander are among the topics the Santa Monica College (SMC) planetarium will explore next month.

Sheriffs Search Kuehl's Santa Monica Home
September 14, 2022 -- Los Angeles County Sheriff's investigators searched County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl's Santa Monica home Wednesday morning in connection with ongoing public corruption investigation, Sheriffs officials said.

Animation, Feminism and Self-Affirmation at Free SMC Media Talks
September 14, 2022 -- Unusual animation techniques, feminism lessons for inmates and tips for building resilience are the subjects of three upcoming talks at Santa Monica College (SMC).

LETTERS -- CEPS is An Unapologetic Lobby for Incumbents
September 14, 2022 -- Parents can safely dismiss anything Ted Winterer says as anti-parent, pro-politician agitprop. He’s looking out for CEPS. Not kids.

NEWS ANALYSIS -- Council Race Could Test SMRR's Clout
September 13, 2022 -- This year's City Council election could be a major test of the political clout Santa Monicans for Renters' Rights (SMRR) has wielded for four decades.

Local Coronavirus Cases Rise After Steady Drop
September 13, 2022 -- Coronavirus cases in Santa Monica rose slightly last week after steadily dropping for the past two months, according to Public Health data released this week.

Letters -- School District Leaders Deserve Praise, Not Baseless Criticism
September 12, 2022 -- I happen to believe our school board can walk and chew gum at the same time and can address both operational and infrastructure needs simultaneously, writes former City Councilmember Ted Winterer.

Hotel Union Flexes Muscle at SMRR Convention
September 12, 2022 -- High humidity and COVID fears resulted in a record low turnout at Sunday's Santa Monicans for Renters' Rights (SMRR) convention, paving the way for the hotel workers union to flex its political muscle.

Council Expected to Ask County's Help Removing Clean Needle Program from Parks
September 12, 2022 -- The City Council on Tuesday is expected to request that County officials help to immediately relocate a program that hands out clean needles to homeless addicts in Santa Monica parks.

Hotel Workers Union Endorses Raskin, Torosis, Zwick
September 9, 2022 -- Three City Council challengers have won the backing of the local hotel workers union, giving them a boost at Sunday's Santa Monicans for Renters' Rights (SMRR) political convention.

Two Killed in Plane Crash at Santa Monica Airport
September 9, 2022 -- The pilot of a single engine aircraft and his passenger died after the plane operated by a local flight school crashed at Santa Monica Airport.

LA County's Homeless Population Up 4 Percent, Down 23 Percent on Westside
September 8, 2022 -- Los Angeles County saw more homeless people in shelters during the coronavirus emergency than ever before, contributing to a drop in Santa Monica's homeless population.

Classic Car Show Celebrates Low Rider Culture
September 8, 2022 -- More than 200 classic cars, some dating back to the 1930s, will roll in to the Santa Monica Pier Saturday for a celebration of LA's famous low rider culture.

Police Union Endorses Negrete, Melkonians, Gielicz
September 7, 2022 -- Santa Monica's two public safety unions -- which have traditionally endorsed the same City Council candidates and backed them with ample war chests -- will not be in lockstep this year.

OPINION -- Response to Recent Attacks on SMMUSD
September 7, 2022 -- Sadly, we have people in our community who continue to spread their version of the big lie as if it were backed by truth. But the facts are the facts, writes School Board Member Jon Kean.

Apartment Providers Placed in Diversion Program
September 7, 2022 -- The owners and managers of two Santa Monica apartment buildings have been placed in a 12-month diversion program after the City filed a lawsuit alleging multiple illegal acts, City officials said last week.

Local COVID Cases Drop Again
September 6, 2022 -- Coranavirus cases in Santa Monica continued dropping last week as Los Angeles County moved into the "low community level" of transmission.

Five Santa Monica Artists Receive City Fellowships
September 6, 2022 -- Five Santa Monica artists working in diverse media -- from painting to digital -- will receive fellowships from the City to support their work.

OPINION --- Where is the Action Plan to Address Learning Loss?
September 6, 2022 -- It is time, now more than ever, to address the leadership crisis our public schools are facing.

Firefighters Endorse Negrete, Melkonians, Tororis for Council
September 2, 2022 -- The Santa Monica Firefighters union announced Tuesday it is backing Councilmember Lana Negrete, Rent Board Commissioner Caroline Torosis and Residocracy founder Armen Melkonians for City Council.

Mid-City Apartment Fire Displaces 2 Residents
September 2, 2022 -- Two residents were displaced after their unit in a Mid City apartment building suffered "significant damage" during a fire Thursday night, Santa Monica Fire Department officials said Friday.

School Board Slate Eyes Major Shake-Up
September 1, 2022 -- For what may be the first time in at least two decades, an organized slate of four challengers from Santa Monica and Malibu will try to gain control of the School Board.

Police to Hold DUI Checkpoint Friday
September 1, 2022 -- Santa Monica police on Friday will hold a driving under the influence (DUI) Checkpoint from 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. at an undisclosed location in the city.

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