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  • 07/19/2019 11:52 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    According to the assessment roll from the LA County Assessor, Santa Monica's 25,000 or so assessor's parcels are collectively worth $39.5 billion. This places Santa Monica 3rd in the County of Los Angeles for property values, which is totally impressive when you consider the relative populations of the top 3 cities.

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  • 07/19/2019 11:48 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    In last week’s article we discussed what and who controls our city. It’s not the city council and certainly not the residents – it’s technology, corporate capitalism and their hired developers. The future is here, but not evenly distributed. Just how much will economics hurt our environment, our culture, our heritage? Can we slow this train, stop it, control it, reverse it? Hopefully yes, but certainly not easily.

    Our city leaders seem to operate in an imaginary world. We’re scrambling to keep rising rents under control, homeless under control, traffic, rising crime, limited natural resources, gentrification and, financial expenditures all under control!!!  What can we do to re-evaluate these policies and get back to some sanity. Do we adapt or just renew from generation to generation? There are answers, but unfortunately not the way things are headed at city hall.

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  • 07/19/2019 11:22 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    Cities across the country are supporting Santa Monica's efforts to defend its homesharing law as a California Appeals Court decides whether to reconsider a case filed by online platforms.

    Last week, eleven cities and counties filed an amicus brief responding to a petition by Airbnb and calling for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to reconsider its March ruling upholding the City's law.

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  • 07/18/2019 8:25 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    Santa Monica property values are the third-highest in Los Angeles County, according to data the county assessor released Monday.

    The combined assessed value of the city’s properties has soared 27% over the past five years to $39.5 billion and is now second only to Los Angeles and Long Beach. While the growth in local property values mirrors the rest of the Westside, Santa Monica’s proximity to the coast and high-quality public services and schools sets it apart in the real estate market, spurring sales and new development, said county assessor Jeffrey Prang.

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  • 07/18/2019 8:16 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    After three years of preparation, construction began this month on the modernization of the 14.7-acre Santa Monica City Yards located adjacent to Bergamot Station on Michigan Avenue. The City Yards hosts the city's maintenance and industrial services, such as water operations, street maintenance, and fire training.

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  • 07/15/2019 8:37 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    Siricki founded a company designed to function as a bridge between students and landlords.

    Nearly 12 years later, Zuma Housing stands as the westside’s largest student housing provider. With offices in both Los Angeles and Istanbul, Siricki’s company employees around 50 people. The young entrepreneur constructed a housing company built around the needs of students, with the motivation to help other international students like himself.    

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  • 07/15/2019 8:17 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    More than 1,400 buildings in Santa Monica are still seismically vulnerable despite efforts by the city to ensure building owners retrofit their properties.

    A report released by the city’s building and safety department one week after two major earthquakes shook the Los Angeles area shows that 77% of vulnerable buildings in Santa Monica have not yet been earthquake-proofed. City Council passed a law in March of 2017 requiring building owners to retrofit buildings that are likely to suffer serious damage in an earthquake.

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  • 07/15/2019 8:15 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    The Rent Control Board (RCB)  is recommending to City Council that renters should be allowed to challenge citations that code enforcement officers issue to their landlords.

    The board voted unanimously last week to write a letter to the council recommending the local law be amended to allow a tenant to challenge a citation issued to their landlord pertaining to their unit. Vice chair Nicole Phillis began pursuing the policy in May, when longtime renter Eileen Carry was evicted after refusing to take down a patio trellis that both she and her landlord were cited for because it violated local code that restricts the height of fences and hedges.

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  • 07/12/2019 9:34 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    As two major jolts and a swarm of aftershocks rattle Southern California, the vast majority of the owners of Santa Monica's most vulnerable buildings have yet to file evaluation reports under the City's seismic retrofit program, Planning Department records show.

    The owners of more than 1,000 "soft story" buildings -- apartment buildings with flimsy first floors held up by thin columns above a carport -- have not filed reports as their September deadline approaches, according to data provided to the Lookout by the City.

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  • 07/12/2019 9:33 AM | Margaret Fulton (Administrator)

    Following residents’ longstanding concerns regarding mansionization and neighborhood character, the city is reviewing development standards in the R-1 single-family areas, which incidentally represents about one-half of our city’s total area. This led me to a rabbit hole of questions with woefully few answers. Following is the first of a two-part article exploring mansionization and related issues.

    What controls our city?– not the environment, or quality of life, or even our appetite for cars.? It is our corporate economy and the developers they side with! And of course investors are primary over residents.

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