Gleam Davis

Name: Gleam Olivia Davis

Age: 60

Occupation: Attorney

Neighborhood of residence: North of Montana (I also have lived in Ocean Park and Wilmont)

Own or rent: Own

Marital status/kids: Married for 24 years with one son who is 20 years old

Party affiliation: Democrat


  1. Should Santa Monica provide more city sponsored services to homeless individuals including establishing a sober living facility in city limits?

Because there has been an uptick in the number of homeless persons in Santa Monica, I would support increasing the intensity or type of City and non-profit services provided to homeless persons. I have no objection to the presence of sober living facilities in the City.

  1. Does the solution to traffic require life be made easier or more difficult for drivers?

In addressing traffic, the goal should be to provide options to drivers who do not want to sit in traffic. That is why I support increasing Big Blue Bus service, Breeze Bike Share services, cycling infrastructure, and pedestrian friendly development patterns and amenities.

  1. Does the city have too many alcohol outlets and should there be stronger limits on acquiring alcohol licenses?

The City does not need any more liquor stores but I have no problem with alcohol licenses for restaurants and bars where food also is served.

  1. What percentage of your daily travel needs are met using something other than a private car?

It’s difficult to express as a percentage. At least once per week, I use Big Blue Bus to get to my office in El Segundo and I am trying to walk more.

  1. What, if any, apps are on your phone/computer/tablet right now were developed by a Santa Monica company?

I have ParkMe and the Santa Monica Library apps on my mobile devices.

  1. The city’s zoning rules now allow for marijuana dispensaries but the city has delayed implementing the clause. Has the city been too cautious, too reckless or just right in its approach to marijuana?

I think the City has been thoughtful in its approach to marijuana dispensaries. It makes sense to wait and see if Proposition 64 (which proposes to legalize marijuana) passes and then decide how to proceed.

  1. What is your definition of overdevelopment and what is your plan to prevent it?

For me, overdevelopment is development that does not allow for the preservation or reuse of interesting existing buildings, that does not allow the creation of active or meditative open spaces, and that is not environmentally or economically sustainable. I think that the City’s staff and the various boards and commissions that review proposals are good gatekeepers that prevent “overdevelopment” from getting very far in the City’s planning process. If for some reason, an undesirable project came before the council, I would vote against it.

  1. Hobbies?

Reading and travel.

  1. Do you spend more time streaming video or watching cable TV?

Neither. I have DIRECTV.

  1. All cities have struggled to find money for affordable housing in the past few years. Is the current ballot measure raising the local sales tax the appropriate way to fund affordable housing?

I support Measures GS and GSH which will provide a new source of funds for affordable housing and for our public schools. As the need for affordable housing is so great, these new funds will be an important but not sufficient source of funding for affordable housing.

  1. How have you been involved in the Santa Monica Community in non-election years?

Being on the City Council keeps me very busy in election and non-election years. I attend numerous meetings and as many events as I can squeeze into my schedule.

  1. Have you ridden any of the attractions at Pacific Park? If so which ones and how often?

I have ridden almost all of them. I love the Pacific Wheel and just rode it with some out-of-town visitors about two weeks ago.

  1. How aggressive should the city be in its pursuit of closing the airport?

The City should continue to work towards closing the airport at the earliest possible time.

  1. To what degree should Santa Monica integrate with the surrounding municipalities?

Santa Monica has to work closely with surrounding communities. We are bordered on three sides by the City of Los Angeles and are part of a larger region. Many of our most intractable problems—traffic, homelessness, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions—are regional problems that require regional solutions.

  1. Businesses often talk about the difficulty of working in Santa Monica. Why is the current level of regulation appropriate and should the city do more to encourage and support the business community?

The City needs to figure out a way to streamline the permit and other processes that subject businesses to long delays. Small, local businesses, in particular, cannot tolerate from a time or expense standpoint the burdens that makes it difficult to open a new business or remodel an existing space. To remedy this, the City could create an expedited permitting program for local and small businesses.

  1. What is the correct approach to operating the Santa Monica Airport?

Unfortunately, with homes so close to the airport, the airport has become an unwelcome neighbor. It is noisy and the planes emit unhealthy pollution and greenhouse gases into the surrounding community. The intransigence of the FAA has prevented us from making substantive changes to the airport’s operation that might improve the situation. Therefore, we must close the airport at the earliest opportunity.

  1. Where do you stand on the local ballot measures (GS, GSH, LV, SM and V)?

I support GS, GSH, SM and V. I am opposed to LV.


Why are you running for council, what makes you qualified to lead, and what role do you see yourself playing on the dais if elected?

I am running for re-election because I bring a thoughtful and nuanced perspective to the issues before the council. As it is with national politics, Santa Monica’s electorate is unfortunately polarized. I listen to and work with councilmembers and residents on both sides of the divide and I think it is important to re-elect someone who can build the bridges necessary to keep Santa Monica progressive and forward-looking. If I am re-elected, I would like to work on building community consensus around the need for more housing-both market-rate and affordable. Although Santa Monica’s capacity is not limitless, by using sustainable growth patterns that do not displace current residents, Santa Monica could build more market-rate and affordable housing that would allow our kids and grandkids to return to and live in their hometown. My second goal is to improve the quality, integration, delivery and visibility of arts, educational, and social service programs in our community. I want to break down barriers so that these endeavors have the opportunity to innovate and flourish and so residents have a better awareness of the support systems and range of enriching activities available to them. My third goal is to regain control of the land at Santa Monica Airport and begin to build a great park.


What were the council’s best decisions in the past two years? What were the worst?

I am particularly happy that, at its retreat in August 2015, the Council elected to include the community’s ability to “Learn and Thrive” as one of its top five priorities. That commitment is the foundation of all our work around wellbeing and helped us win recognition from, among others, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. By focusing on wellbeing, we can build a community where each individual has an opportunity to succeed. This will make our community stronger and more resilient. I think that the City Council made a bad decision in removing the possibility of an occasional Tier 3 housing development along Wilshire and Santa Monica Boulevards, east of Lincoln. Placing housing on those boulevards is a crucial component of converting them from automobile thoroughfares to complete streets that accommodate transit, pedestrians, and cyclists. With the removal of the option of a Tier 3 housing project from those boulevards, at least one site has abandoned plans to build housing and, instead, will build a 100% commercial building.


How has the city’s pursuit of sustainability been appropriately balanced with economic, development and financial concerns?

I do not believe that there is a tradeoff between environmental stewardship and a robust economy. If anything, Santa Monica has demonstrated that leading-edge environmental programs can co-exist with economic vitality. Too often, sustainability initiatives such as the single-use plastic bag ban and energy self-sufficiency are met with resistance on the ground that they will reduce the City’s economic health. Time, however, has proven the opposite to be true. Santa Monica’s popularity as a place to live and work has only grown because of its commitment to sustainability. Santa Monica has been able to accomplish this through initiatives such as its sustainability audits for business and the Sustainable Quality Awards that recognize businesses that share and exemplify Santa Monica’s commitment to our environment.