City Council

Pier lottery system debuts to mixed reviews

CITY HALL — A week after officials began using a lottery system to pick which acts get to fill the 26 performance spots on the Santa Monica Pier, the new system is getting mixed reviews from the musicians, artists and oddball entertainers who flock to the tourist magnet to amuse the masses and make money. The lottery system replaced a... Read more →


City releases taxi cab franchise rankings

CITY HALL — Responding to calls for more transparency in its taxi cab overhaul plan, City Hall officials this week released new information about how they determined which cab companies should be allowed to operate in Santa Monica under a proposal the City Council will consider later this year. The push to shift Santa Monica’s... Read more →


Talk about a steal of a deal

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, July 3, at 10:09 p.m., Santa Monica police officers responded to the 1800 block of Santa Monica Boulevard (Santa Monica BMW) regarding a... Read more →


Judge: Saint John’s intimidated nurses

MID-CITY — Bolstered by a federal judge’s ruling that Saint John’s Health Center engaged in illegal union busting, nurses at the hospital on Thursday staged a rally there demanding they be allowed to hold an election to determine if a union is favored by a majority of caregivers. For years, nurses at Saint John’s... Read more →

City Council

Council approves new general plan

CITY HALL — Wrapping up the six-year process of updating Santa Monica’s general plan with a marathon final meeting Tuesday night, the City Council unanimously approved the Land Use and Circulation Element (LUCE), agreeing to a framework that will guide development for the next 20 years. Though recent hearings on the document have... Read more →

City Council

Council approves sales tax for November

CITY HALL — The City Council on Tuesday moved toward placing a half percent sales tax increase before voters, deciding by a 6-1 vote to draft a ballot measure for this November’s election. The proposed measure would raise an estimated $13 million per year for City Hall by adding a half-cent transaction and use tax onto Santa... Read more →


Assembly approves BPA ban

SACRAMENTO — After twice voting down a bill that would ban a chemical some say is toxic from being used in baby bottles and other products, the state Assembly earlier this month approved the bill written by Sen. Fran Pavley (D-Santa Monica). The Toxics-Free Babies and Toddlers Act, or SB 797, would ban the use of Bisphenol-A (BPA) from... Read more →


Dakota Lounge gutted by fire

WILSHIRE BLVD — Investigators with the Santa Monica Fire Department today are trying to determine the cause of a blaze that tore through the Dakota Lounge early Tuesday morning, destroying everything but the music venue’s sound board and stage. No injuries were reported, said SMFD Division Chief Kent Coble. The fire broke out... Read more →


Woman pleads not guilty in Redding murder

AIRPORT COURTHOUSE — A Thousand Oaks woman pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of murdering an aspiring model and actress in her Santa Monica apartment. Kelly Soo Park, 44, is accused in the killing of Juliana Redding, 21, who was found dead on March 16, 2008, after her mother called police when she could not reach her daughter. In... Read more →


FAA wants 100K for flight path info

SMO — The FAA says it plans to charge residents $100,000 to review and release data from its six-month flight path test at Santa Monica Airport. A group of residents who said the test caused a drastic increase in flights over their homes in Sunset Park and Ocean Park requested the data after the FAA claimed the test had only a minimal... Read more →


Dangerous driving

Four people have been killed in Los Angeles County, and 299 suspected drunken drivers were arrested on L.A. County freeways this holiday weekend, the California Highway Patrol reported. The report covers the time period from 6:01 p.m. Friday through 6 a.m. Monday. During this 60-hour reporting period, there were four people killed in L.A.... Read more →

City Council

Council set to finalize LUCE

CITY HALL — After six years of work, Santa Monica’s general plan update — the document that will guide real estate development in town during the next 20 years — is headed for final approval tonight, culminating a month of sometimes contentious public hearings. The most significant changes to the draft version of the... Read more →


Police searching for missing senior

PUBLIC SAFETY FACILITY — Police are searching for a 77-year-old Santa Monica man who has been missing since June 28. Deputies with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s office said they found Donald Carter’s car parked on Friday night about 11 miles east of Interstate 5 in the Warm Springs area near Lake Hughes Road.... Read more →


Greening the economy

Dear EarthTalk: What does it mean when one uses the phrase, “building a green economy?” I’ve heard it repeated a few times lately and would like to have a better understanding of the concept. Rosie Chang, Islip, NY The phrase “building a green economy” means different things to different people, but in... Read more →