Festival celebrates nature and nurturers

CLOVER PARK — Just in time for Mother’s Day, locals can celebrate their own moms and Mother Nature together at the zero-waste, 19th annual Santa Monica Festival this Saturday. The festival is being put on by the Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division, Community and Cultural Services Department, Arts Commission and Office of... Read more →


Pot found on 8-year-old, mother arrested

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. Tuesday, April 27, at 2:20 p.m., Santa Monica police officers responded to McKinley Elementary School after a teacher there found marijuana and cigars on... Read more →


Local girl wins PTA award for song

DOWNTOWN — Through her inspiring love for her father, Sophie Smyth, a 10-year-old fifth grader from Santa Monica, has won the Award of Excellence certificate from the National PTA-sponsored Reflections Program. She competed against 65,000 other entries from students throughout California for the award, which was for a song she... Read more →

City Council

Rent control commissioner barred from increase vote

CITY HALL — When the Rent Control Board makes its annual decision on the maximum allowable rent increase this summer, it will do so without Commissioner Robert Kronovet having a say. Kronovet, who owns a six-unit, rent-controlled apartment building in Santa Monica, has been barred from voting on the rent increase by the California Fair... Read more →


SM businesses recognized for sustainability

PICO BLVD — While the Oscars had comedian Steve Martin and actor Alec Baldwin, those who attended the 15th annual Sustainable Quality Awards Wednesday had local attorney Tom Larmore and his guitar. The Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce chair led the crowd in a song about garbage. While not a common theme for most award ceremonies, the... Read more →


Garden designs up for a vote

SM AIRPORT — Hoping to encourage more residents to replace their water-sucking lawns with plants that thrive in the natural climate, City Hall is sponsoring a contest to select the designs for three demonstration “sustainable gardens” to be planted at Santa Monica Airport. Russell Ackerman, City Hall’s water... Read more →


Macerich reports $6.4M loss

DOWNTOWN — Santa Monica-based mall operator Macerich Co. today reported a loss of $6.4 million, or 8 cents per share, for the quarter ended March 31, compared with net income of $14 million, or 18 cents per share, for the same period in 2009. Macerich, a real estate investment trust, reported quarterly net operating income up 1.8... Read more →


Man who jumped off pier charged with multiple felonies

DOWNTOWN — A man accused of leading police on a high-speed chase in a stolen vehicle that ended with him jumping off the Santa Monica Pier was charged Tuesday with multiple felonies. Prosecutors said Gerjuan Deshon Harmon, 27, is also suspected of burglarizing two UCLA dorm rooms prior to Saturday’s chase. Harmon, who prosecutors... Read more →


Noise complaints pile up at SMO

SM AIRPORT — The complaints have been flooding in-boxes and tying up phone lines at Santa Monica Airport in recent weeks, the result of a concerted effort by nearby residents to oppose what they say is an unacceptable level of airplane noise caused by a shift in the takeoff routes of some low-flying propeller planes. The Federal... Read more →

City Council

Resolution to ACLU homeless case coming

CITY HALL — A tentative deal has been reached to resolve a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union against Santa Monica that accused City Hall officials of harassing and intimidating homeless residents in an attempt to drive them out of town, according to a document ACLU attorneys filed in federal court on Monday. “The... Read more →


Council wants more out of proposed Agensys DA

BERGAMOT STATION — Less well-to-do cities would throw out the welcome mat for a company like Agensys, a biotech firm researching cancer treatments that is both a clean manufacturer and a provider of high-paying jobs. But not Santa Monica. The company, which already occupies several buildings in the city, wants to expand and consolidate... Read more →


SMRR takes stand against office development

OLYMPIC HS — The leading political party in Santa Monica is sharpening its stance in favor of residential development over commercial space as City Hall prepares for a final series of meetings to complete its general plan update. Santa Monicans for Renters’ Rights, which has backed a majority of the sitting City Council members,... Read more →


State Supreme Court to hear BBB discrimination case

DOWNTOWN — A former Big Blue Bus driver who sued City Hall for allegedly firing her because she got pregnant will have a chance to argue her case before the California Supreme Court. The high court, which agreed to take the case April 22, will be asked to make a ruling on whether a “mixed-motive” defense exists under the... Read more →


Leaps and bounds

Dear EarthTalk I am very interested in purchasing household cleaners whose ingredients and final product are not tested on animals. Where do I look? Debbie Reek via e-mail According to most animal advocates, the fact that manufacturers of household cleaners still use animals to test the toxicity of their products is not only inhumane —... Read more →


Ocean Park facelift OK’d by council

OCEAN PARK BLVD — Plans to beautify and environmentally enhance a nine-block section of Ocean Park Boulevard got the City Council’s unanimous support last week, bringing a long-desired project a step closer to completion. City Hall planners said they’re still about a year away from breaking ground on the project, which... Read more →