News

After protests, city officials reconsider tree removal

DOUGLAS PARK — The Santa Monica Community Maintenance Department is conferring this week to find an alternative to the removal of one of the tallest trees here. The decision comes in response to a surge in public outrage against the proposed tree removal. The tree, an Australian bunya bunya, is known for dropping heavy, bowling... Read more →

News

City pursues ownership of Lincoln Boulevard

LINCOLN BOULEVARD — An unsightly stretch of Highway 1 that has long been thought of needing a little TLC could soon be in the hands of City Hall. City officials have renewed discussions with the California Department of Transportation — better known as Caltrans — about relinquishing the state’s control of a 1.2 mile... Read more →

City Council

Light Rail could cause complications for circulation

<i>Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series that tracks the city’s expenditures appearing on upcoming Santa Monica City Council consent agendas. Consent agenda items are routinely passed by the City Council with little or no discussion from elected officials or the public. However, many of the items have been... Read more →

Environment

Slick recovery

Dear EarthTalk I haven’t heard much of late about big oil spills like the infamous Exxon Valdez. Has the industry cleaned up its act, or do the media just not report them? Olivia G. via e-mail In the wake of 1989’s massive Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska’s Prince William Sound, when 11 million gallons of oil befouled some... Read more →

News

Foundation focuses attention on athletics

16TH STREET — For the past 27 years, the Education Foundation of Santa Monica & Malibu has been one of the school district’s biggest donors, buying new library books, paying for dance instruction and providing academic enrichment grants to teachers. Now the nonprofit organization is directing its focus outside the... Read more →

News

Puppetry center falls victim to slumping economic times

BROADWAY — Now even puppets are unemployed. After more than a dozen years entertaining Santa Monica’s children and their families, the Santa Monica Puppetry Center is closing its doors, the latest casualty of the slumping economy. Steve Meltzer, the founder of the center and a skilled puppeteer who worked on the cult... Read more →

City Council

O’Day resigns from Planning Commission

CITY HALL — Terry O’Day, an environmental activist who helped lead a campaign to defeat an anti-development measure last fall, resigned from the Planning Commission on Thursday citing a need to focus more attention on his family and career. The one-time City Council candidate and married father of two young children submitted his... Read more →

News

Expo could hinder funding for subway

SM LIBRARY — As officials with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority plan for a subway extension to Santa Monica, one of the questions it will face is whether the western part of L.A. County will have the demand to support two public transit infrastructures, the other being light rail. Included in the proposal for the Westside... Read more →

News

In the eye of the beholder

Editor’s Note: This is a series in which Daily Press writers overhear and observe happenings around Santa Monica. BERGAMOT STATION — A sequence of loud beeps echoes across the near empty parking lot here as a big rig completes a many-point turn Thursday morning. A few feet away, a sign prohibits that very action. At just before... Read more →

Crime

Youths vandalize elementary schools

OCEAN PARK — A local elementary school received an unexpected outdoor lounge recently when a group of local juveniles moved some classroom furniture to the roof of one of its buildings. The incident took place on the weekend of July 18-19 when three youths, whose identities are being withheld because of their age, reportedly... Read more →

Airport

Congressmembers urge FAA to move on safety matters

CITY HALL — Just a few days following the crash landing of a single-engine plane at Santa Monica Airport, two congressional representatives wrote a letter asking the new FAA administrator to restart negotiations with local city officials over runway safety measures. The Aug. 5 letter from Congresswoman Jane Harman and Congressman Henry... Read more →

Crime

Taxi driver robbed at gunpoint

Crime Watch is a weekly series culled from reports provided by the Santa Monica Police Department. These are arrests only. All parties are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Saturday, Aug. 1, at 2:26 a.m., A Santa Monica Police officer on routine patrol in the 1600 block of 20th Street was flagged down by a taxi driver who... Read more →

News

Renovation of affordable housing development on horizon

OCEAN PARK — There are better meals ahead for the tenants of a Santa Monica affordable housing development. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved an approximately $499,000 contract with AZ Home to renovate the kitchens in all 22 units of a 62-year-old building at 175 Ocean Park Blvd. The county Housing... Read more →

News

From guzzling to sipping

CITYWIDE — In just a few short weeks, customers at Santa Monica car dealerships have traded in hundreds of clunkers for sleeker, more fuel-efficient cars — but the lifespan of the “cash for clunkers” program, also know as the Car Allowance Rebate System, and its actual energy savings are still up for... Read more →

Homelessness

Other ACLU suits ended camping enforcement

CITY HALL — If history means anything, then Santa Monica city officials might be forced to suspend enforcement of its anti camping ordinance. That’s what officials in Los Angeles and Laguna Beach did as part of their settlement with the American Civil Liberties Union after it sued the cities for allegedly arresting homeless... Read more →