Environment

Diesel cleans up

Dear EarthTalk I’ve been hearing about the great gas mileage for Volkswagens that use diesel fuel. But is it better for the environment to use diesel or unleaded gasoline? K. Cronk, Bay City, MI In the past, diesel fuel was always considered dirtier than gasoline. But newer standards regulating sulfur content and improved technology... Read more →

Government

Voters could decide new fees for clean water projects

SACRAMENTO — Los Angeles County residents may be asked whether to approve new fees that would support clean-water projects under a bill authored by Assemblywoman Julia Brownley (D-Santa Monica) that passed the state Legislature on Friday. If signed into law by Gov. Schwarzenegger, the bill, AB 2554, would authorize the Los Angeles... Read more →

News

Measure Y divides business community

DOWNTOWN — With a school district activist and a Chamber of Commerce leader heading the effort to pass Measure Y, the ballot initiative that would increase the local sales tax by a half percent, backers are portraying the tax hike as a needed revenue booster that has broad based appeal. For school supporters and those concerned about... Read more →

News

SM Place welcomes Nordstrom

SANTA MONICA PLACE — With the Third Street Promenade and the newly opened outdoor mall, Santa Monica is no stranger to high-end shopping. However, with the grand opening of Nordstrom at Santa Monica Place on Friday, locals can now enjoy having the comforts of the fashion retailer chain in their very own neighborhood. “The quality... Read more →

Briefs

Tune in and learn from the tube

Whoever said television rots your brain definitely isn’t familiar with CityTV, Santa Monica’s public cable television station. Thanks to a partnership between CityTV and the California State University at Dominguez Hills viewers can take a break from watching mind-numbing reality television and enroll in college classes simply by... Read more →

News

Motorcycle sting set

If you plan on taking your hog out for a ride up the coast this Sunday, you better make sure you know all the rules of the road. That’s because Santa Monica police will conduct a “Motorcycle Safety Enforcement Operation” this weekend in areas that are either regularly used by motorcyclists or where there have been previous... Read more →

News

Feds announce local grants to curb smoking, reduce obesity

PALISADES PARK — Residents of Santa Monica and cities across Los Angeles County will soon be able to take advantage of $32.1 million worth of programs aimed at reducing smoking and preventing obesity, thanks to a federal grant announced Wednesday. L.A. County will receive $16.2 million for tobacco prevention and $15.9 million for... Read more →

Crime

Former BBB employee sentenced in EZ pass fraud case

AIRPORT COURTHOUSE — A former Big Blue Bus supervisor found guilty of abusing City Hall’s rideshare program that provides employees with free bus passes if they take public transit to work has been sentenced to 30 days in jail and ordered to pay restitution and spend 45 days on a beach cleanup crew. Chief Deputy City Attorney... Read more →

City Council

Top 20 salaries in City Hall all over $200K

CITY HALL — The 20 highest paid employees at City Hall each earned more than $200,000 last year, including a sergeant in the Santa Monica Police Department who took home roughly $8,000 more than his boss, the chief of police, a review by the Daily Press of 2009 wage and tax statements revealed. The majority of those on the top 20... Read more →

News

Alleged cooking oil thieves nabbed

SM BLVD — There’s a new type of scavenger at work on the streets of Santa Monica. Rather than scrounging for aluminum cans, this kind of trash can entrepreneur is looking to turn a profit by recovering used cooking oil from restaurant receptacles and re-selling it as biodiesel. There’s just one hitch. As two would-be... Read more →

Education

Brownley bill holds charter schools to open standards

SACRAMENTO — Charter schools would be held to the same standards for public meetings and open records as traditional public schools under a bill sent to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. The bill by Assemblywoman Julia Brownley won final approval in the state Senate Tuesday. In addition to public records and meetings requirements, the Santa... Read more →

News

Showdown brewing over bicycle lane

CITY HALL — Bicycle activists and their allies on the Planning Commission and City Council are headed for a high-stakes clash with bio-tech firm Agensys over a proposed bike lane they want incorporated into a proposed office development the company is planning on the east side of town. Proponents of the idea say it’s crucial that... Read more →