Without the weather cues to mark the seasons, Californians track the passage of time via seasonal Starbucks drinks, custom candy in Target and Shen Yun commercials. While the retailers are pushing full steam ahead into the Spooky Season, political wonks have an intermediary time marked by the start of the endorsement rush. 

Candidates for local offices are touting endorsements on a daily basis as they prepare for big fundraising pushes in advance of the heavy campaign work and a trio of council candidates are among the first beneficiaries of a significant union endorsement. 

Lana Negrete, Armen Melkonians and Caroline Torosis were endorsed by Santa Monica firefighters this week. 

“Santa Monica is navigating the early stages of its economic and cultural recovery. These complex challenges stand before us with no simple and immediate solutions” said Local 1109 President Dom Bei. “Public safety and homelessness remain at the top of Santa Monica’s greatest concerns and they are shared by our residents, businesses, workforce and visitors alike.”

The union said this year’s crop of candidates, including those that didn’t get the official nod, were all very strong. 

“Our Santa Monica Firefighters have been on the frontlines, fully committed to helping Santa Monicans at their greatest time of need. Local 1109 believes these candidates, whom have earned the 1109 endorsement, possess the necessary experience, commitment and diversity of views to effectively support our mission and efforts. We are confident in their ability to successfully prioritize public safety in Santa Monica and continue to support a Fire Department that has faithfully served our community for over 130 years,” said Bei

While the fire service is the first to make its selections, several other groups will likely announce soon. 

The endorsement process for the Chamber of Commerce, Police Union and Democratic Club are either complete or near completion at this time. Santa Monicans For Renters’ Rights, the city’s historically influential, home-grown political party, will hold its annual convention on Sept. 11. 

A newly formed Political Action Committee (PAC), A Brighter Future, has endorsed four challengers in the school board race (Angela DiGaetano, Esther Hickman, Stacy Rouse and Miles Warner.)

Outside Santa Monica, endorsements for the Supervisor’s race are piling up. 

Bob Hertzberg has been endorsed by Santa Monica police and fire unions, State Sen. Ben Allen, Assemblyman Richard Bloom, U.S. Senator Alex Padilla and a host of labor groups. 

Lindsey Horvath has been endorsed by the LA Times, many democratic clubs and a swath of Santa Monica officials (Kristin McCowan, Kevin McKeown, Pam O’Connor, Judy Abdo, Ted Winterer, Oscar de la Torre, Phil Brock, Gleam Davis, Christine Parra, Nancy Greenstein, Rob Rader, Laurie Lieberman, Maria Leon-Vasquez and Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein.

Santa Monica’s neighborhood associations will be hosting their candidate workshops in the coming weeks and the Santa Monica Daily Press will launch its candidate evaluations on Sept. 12.