Promenade, traffic lights without power

DOWNTOWN — To make a dreary rainy day even worse, about 50 businesses on the Third Street Promenade were without power, and were expected to remain without electricity until as late as 2 a.m. Tuesday, said Vanessa McGrady of Southern California Edison. More than 2,000 customers were initially affected by a large outage, caused by an... Read more →


FAA: Santa Monica Airport must stay open

SMO — Although an agreement between the federal government and City Hall governing the operation of Santa Monica Airport expires in 2015, FAA officials say that’s no reason to expect significant change at SMO. And it’s certainly not a reason to look forward to an airport closure, the agency says. “In the FAA’s... Read more →


Spreading positivity through music

ROSE AVE — It’s been a challenging year for many. Unemployment is on the rise along with foreclosures. Confidence in elected officials is waning as the state’s debt keeps climbing. In this unpredictable time, it can be difficult to remain positive. That’s where Jazz musician and Santa Monica High School alum John... Read more →


New stats reveal greater number of dropouts

SMMUSD HDQTRS — Last school year 13.5 percent of local public high school students dropped out, an increase from 8.1 percent during the previous year, according to new statistics compiled by the California Department of Education. Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District officials blamed the steep increase on a new system for... Read more →


Rain breaks records, more expected

LOS ANGELES — A storm walloped parts of California with up to 7 inches of rain and spawned minor flooding, mudslides and road closures Monday, but forecasters warn the bad weather’s real impact may be yet to come. More than 3 additional inches of rain expected across the region by Wednesday will hit already saturated... Read more →


Desertification a real threat

Dear EarthTalk Can you explain what “desertification” is and why it is an important environmental issue? Jay Harris Nashville, TN Desertification is the degradation of land in already dry parts of the globe that results from various factors, including natural climate changes as well as human activity. As the name connotes it is... Read more →


Bus crash on PCH

CITYWIDE — It certainly was a manic Monday for one Metro bus driver who missed a freeway ramp early this morning, tried to make a U-turn and ended up with his bus disabled and blocking six lanes of Pacific Coast Highway in Santa Monica.  The driver, heading from a garage to his route up Santa Monica Boulevard, instead steered onto... Read more →


Slide closes PCH west of Malibu

MALIBU — A scenic stretch of Pacific Coast Highway west of Malibu has been closed because of a rock and mud slide as record rains soak Southern California. The California Highway Patrol says PCH was shut down at about 8:10 p.m. Sunday because of the slide near the border of Los Angeles and Ventura counties some 40 miles west of Downtown... Read more →


SMPD: A year without a deadly traffic accident

CITYWIDE — For the first time in a long time, Santa Monica experienced no fatal traffic accidents over the last 12 months, a remarkable statistic given the volume of vehicle trips that take place in this bustling city by the sea, authorities said. Santa Monica Police Department Investigator Chris Dawson, who handles traffic accidents,... Read more →


Olympic High deemed ‘model’ campus

LINCOLN BLVD — Olympic High School, which offers programs designed for students who have struggled to stay in school, has been named a 2011 Model Continuation High School by State Superintendent Jack O’Connell, making it one of 27 schools to receive the honor. “We at Olympic are delighted to have our school and staff... Read more →


Don’t leave packages unattended

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. Wednesday, Dec. 8, at 6:50 p.m., Santa Monica police officers responded to the 1100 block of 11th Street regarding a theft that recently occurred. The... Read more →


Saint John’s testing stem cell treatment for back pain

MID-CITY — Are you hurting to get rid of that pain in your neck or the ache in your lower back? If so, Saint John’s Health Center could help. Doctors at the Mid-City hospital are looking for candidates to participate in clinical studies for lumbar and cervical fusion procedures using adult stem cell technology instead of bone... Read more →


New nursing facility for veterans seeks patients

WEST L.A. — Veterans in need of assistance are being encouraged to apply for a bed at the new Veterans Home of California — West Los Angeles, a 396-bed, long-term assisted living and nursing facility located near the VA hospital on Wilshire Boulevard. The home provides veterans who qualify with a living environment that... Read more →


City Council favors locals in taxi cab compromise

CITY HALL — In a contentious coda to what had already been a process fraught with controversy, the City Council on Tuesday agreed to allow each of the five taxi companies that were awarded franchises to operate additional cabs, with the two Santa Monica-based companies getting a bonus of five cabs each. The decision came after the... Read more →