Ruckus in the emergency room

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. Monday, Jan. 3, at 2:44 p.m., Santa Monica police officers responded to the 2100 block of Santa Monica Boulevard — Saint John’s Health Center... Read more →


VA tries housing-first model for homeless vets

DOWNTOWN — Homeless service providers at the Veterans Administration, Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and several non-profits including Santa Monica-based OPCC are working on a new initiative aimed at housing the 60 most vulnerable, chronically homeless veterans on the Westside. The goal is to direct VA housing vouchers... Read more →


Deasy picked to lead LAUSD

DOWNTOWN L.A. — John Deasy, chief deputy to Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Ramon Cortines, was appointed Tuesday to take over for Cortines when he retires this spring. Deasy has been with the district since August, serving as a top deputy to Cortines, 78. The LAUSD Board of Education announced the selection after a... Read more →


Drug arrests spike at Samohi

SAMOHI — A spike in drug arrests at Santa Monica High School this academic year is causing concern among parents and police officers and has prompted leaders of the school’s PTSA to call a meeting to address the issue. So far this school year there have been 35 drug arrests at Samohi, up from 17 during the entire previous... Read more →


Dude, where’s my car?

If you’ve ever been shopping in Downtown, it’s probably happened to you before. You’re loaded up with purchases and ready to head home, but there’s just one problem — you can’t find your car. Well those parking in the structures adjacent to Santa Monica Place now have a tool they can use to locate their... Read more →


City Hall wants fee increases for recreation programs

CITYWIDE — City Hall is proposing nearly across-the-board fee increases for recreation programs and permits to use city facilities — a move that officials say is needed to stave off cuts as financial projections show a growing budget gap despite a recently passed half percent sales tax hike. The proposed increases would... Read more →


Small quakes occur under Santa Monica Bay

HERMOSA BEACH — Several small earthquakes have jiggled the ocean floor off Southern California. A magnitude-3.1 quake at 8:52 a.m. Tuesday was the closest to the mainland, occurring under Santa Monica Bay four miles west of Hermosa Beach. The U.S. Geological Survey’s community reporting system indicates it was felt lightly along... Read more →


Former Samohi principal to serve on state ed board

Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday selected former Santa Monica High School Principal Ilene Straus to serve on the state Board of Education, according to reports. Straus, who oversaw Samohi’s transition to the House System, which broke up the campus into six small learning communities, is currently an assistant superintendent in the Beverly... Read more →


Local couple to study plastic pollution in the Pacific

SMC — A married couple with a love of the ocean are embarking on a journey across the South Pacific, all in an effort to document the damage done by plastic. Santa Monica College biology professor Dr. Garen Baghdasarian and his wife Sara Bayles, a writer/blogger and environmental activist, will set sail in March on the 5,000-mile... Read more →

City Council

Council to formally deny land use appeal

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 part of... Read more →


O’Connor gets new term on Metro board

DOWNTOWN — Santa Monica City Councilwoman Pam O’Connor has been re-elected to serve on the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority board, a post she’s held since 2001. O’Connor was unanimously chosen to serve a third four-year term on Thursday by representatives from the 20 Westside and Southbay cities... Read more →


Trio of local residents elected Dem delegates

DOWNTOWN — As the state and county Democratic parties make endorsements and shape their platforms over the next two years, three additional Santa Monicans will have the chance to weigh in. At a meeting on Sunday, Genise Schnitman, Ben Allen and Chris Braun were elected to two-year terms as delegates to the California Democratic Party... Read more →


Green for going green

Forget the big bills for water and gardeners. City Hall is offering big bucks to homeowners who choose to replace grass with sustainable, drought-resistant plants. Homeowners who make the transition are eligible for up to $5,000 in rebates. Removing grass in a parkway can net up to $1,000. Upgrading a sprinkler system can be worth a $500... Read more →


JCPenney gives big to Boys & Girls Club

More Santa Monica students will be able to participate in after-school programs at the local Boys & Girls Club thanks to a $7,500 grant from retail giant JCPenney. The grant is part of a larger $5 million grant distribution benefiting the YMCA of the USA, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, National 4-H and FIRST (For Inspiration and... Read more →


Bluefin tuna an endangered dish

Dear EarthTalk: Are Atlantic bluefin tuna really about to go extinct? What are the contributing factors and what is being done to try to head off this tragedy? — Edward Jeffries, Norwalk, Conn. According to many marine biologists, Atlantic bluefin tuna, one of three closely related bluefin tuna species, are in danger of going... Read more →