September 30, 2020 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Candidates Start Jockeying For Santa Monica Council, Schools, Rent Control Board:

It is 2012. We have already celebrated Leap Day. The London Games are just around the corner. Next up on deck: the 2012 Presidential Election. While the nation will debate whether or not President Barack Obama should be unseated by Republican nominee Mitt Romney, voters in Santa Monica will also be mulling over candidates for city council, school board, rent control board, and the Santa Monica College (SMC) Board of Trustees.

Prospective candidates were officially allowed to pull papers on Monday, meaning candidates may now start jockeying for signatures to have their respective names put on the November 6 ballot.

In all, there are 12 local offices up for grabs this year.

One thing is for certain: the city council will certainly look different in 2013. Four of the seven council seats will be up for grabs in November, and at least one new member will fill one of those seats.

Some familiar faces are vying for those open seats, including Planning Commissioner Ted Winterer, local peace activist Jerry Rubin, and advocate Shari Davis.

Frank Gruber, an entertainment lawyer who has lived in Santa Monica for the past 29 years, was the first person to announce his candidacy for council.

A newcomer to the council race is John Cyrus Smith, a local journalist and teacher who earned several Emmy Awards for “Best Newscast” during 18 years as a TV News Producer at NBC4. Smith left his broadcast post last month to run for office.

A close race in 2010 saw Winterer 148 votes shy of winning a council seat; with four open seats this election cycle and only one council member officially declared for reelection, it will be interesting to see if Winterer can garner enough support to get over the top in 2012.

Five council members were voted into office two years ago: Kevin McKeown, Pam O’Connor, and Bob Holbrook claimed the three four-year seats up for grabs, while Gleam Davis and Terry O’Day were elected to finish the incomplete terms of Ken Genser and Herb Katz.

McKeown was the top vote getter with more than 13,000 votes, while Holbrook had the fewest of the five winners, barely edging out Winterer.

This year, Davis, who is currently finishing Katz’s term, is the only council member to announce her intentions to run again. It will be the first time she seeks a four-year term.

Mayor Richard Bloom’s time on the dais will come to an end after 13 years of service, as he is one of two candidates seeking to represent Santa Monica in the State Assembly.

Bloom is running against Besty Butler for the 50th Assembly District seat.

With Bloom moving on from the council, his pending vacancy means Santa Monica will have both a new mayor through 2014 and a fresh council member serving through 2016.

Interestingly enough, neither Council members Bobby Shriver or Terry O’Day has announced whether they intend to seek reelection.

Shriver has served on the dais since 2004 and most recently had a stint as mayor in 2010. O’Day came aboard the council to complete the remainder of Genser’s term after he passed away in 2010.

As candidates have until Aug. 10 to gather the 100 signatures necessary to have their respective names appear on the November ballot, there may still be more people who will seek a seat on the dais. Holbrook, McKeown, and O’Connor all still have two years remaining in their respective terms.

An interesting note: McKeown is the longest serving council member in Santa Monica history who has not served as mayor.

Whether he will for 2013-14 will be contingent upon the content of the new council.

With the council guaranteed to look different in 2013 and 2014, the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD) School Board has three seats — those of Board President Ben Allen, member Jose Escarce, and member Maria Leon Vasquez — up for grabs.

A big issue within the SMMUSD is proper representation of Malibu area schools on the two-city Board of Education.

Currently, all members of the SMMUSD Board are Santa Monica residents. Malibu residents have regularly been on record at public meetings that they feel slighted to not have a voting voice on the SMMUSD Board.

Even more, the limited representation directly impacts, often negatively, the amount of funding Malibu schools receive.

Though Malibu residents have an equal right to run for a School Board seat, Malibu-area candidates have a smaller voting pool to draw from, meaning they are not likely to garner enough electoral support to gain a seat on the Board.

An idea has floated around for some time to have Malibu cede from the SMMUSD and create its own school district.

Whether or not a Malibu School District happens remains to be seen. It also remains to be seen who from Malibu, if anyone, will file his or her candidacy for a Board seat.

Two seats from the Rent Control Board are also up for election, with current members Robert Kronovet and Ilse Rosenstein up for re-election.

No other candidates have been announced.

The Santa Monica College Board of Trustees has three seats up for re-election — those of Rob Rader, Margaret Quinones-Perez and Susan Aminoff.

Several state ballot measures are expected to be on the November ballot, including votes on Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed tax increases and determining whether the state should be on a two-year budget cycle instead of one.

Other ballot measures may repeal the Three Strikes Law, potentially put an end to death penalty punishment in California, increasing penalties for human trafficking and sex slavery, and call for mandatory labeling of genetically engineered foods.

There are also proposals to increase state income and business taxes, affect the way car insurance is determined, and call for a referendum on the State Senate Redistricting Plan. In addition to the presidential election, Sen. Dianne Feinstein is up for reelection and is seeking to retain her seat in Washington, D.C., through 2018.

The general election will be held nationwide on Nov. 6.

in News
Related Posts

Santa Monica Walk to End Alzheimer’s

September 29, 2020

September 29, 2020

Alzheimer’s Association encouraging residents to walk in small groups amid COVID-19 The Alzheimer’s Association is inviting Santa Monica residents to...

Lawsuit Filed Against Plaza Development

September 28, 2020

September 28, 2020

Slow-growth group says City is violating Surplus Land Act By Sam Catanzaro A slow-growth group has filed a lawsuit to...

City Of Santa Monica Being Sued Over Proposed Plaza Project: Santa Monica Beat – September, 28, 2020

September 28, 2020

September 28, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Santa Monica Being Sued Over Proposed Plaza Project. * LA Street...

Santa Monica Police Make Additional Arrests in Looting of REI

September 28, 2020

September 28, 2020

Marques Miles and Misty Jones arrested by Santa Monica Police Department Santa Monica police recently made additional arrests of two...

OpEd: The Miramar Project Will Be a New Architectural Jewel

September 27, 2020

September 27, 2020

The Miramar Hotel has been a central part of Santa Monica’s history and an integral part of the community for...

Edify TV: Trident Center Redevelopment

September 25, 2020

September 25, 2020

The Westside’s Trident Center is getting a major overhaul and new name as part of a flurry of development in...

Miramar Project to go Before City Council Tuesday

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

Councilmember Gleam Davis asks City Attorney whether she should rescue self from vote  By Sam Catanzaro  Santa Monica lawmakers will...

SMa.r.t. Column: Needed, A Heart Transplant

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

We have written about adaptive reuse in previous columns and have postulated that with proper incentives, the existing one, two...

Edify TV: Boulders Blocking Westside Encampment

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

City officials recently removed boulders placed on sidewalks by some Westside residents to prevent the formation of a homeless encampment....

Should Council Member Davis Recuse Herself From Voting? Santa Monica Beat – September, 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Should Council Member Davis Recuse Herself From Voting? * Increases In...

SMC to Be Online for Winter and Spring 2021

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

College cites lack of available vaccine  By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica College (SMC) has announced it will be delivering classes...

Edify TV: Al Fresco Program Ending?

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

During a COVID-19 pandemic many restaurants have found aid through the City of Los Angeles’ Al Fresco dining program, but...

Local Breweries Say They Have Been Unfairly Shuttered as County Passes Grant Program

September 24, 2020

September 24, 2020

$10 million grant program approved by Board of Supervisors  By Sam Catanzaro Will a $10 million grant program be enough...

Santa Monica Loses Vegan Restaurant

September 23, 2020

September 23, 2020

Space housing Santa Monica vegan restaurant Viva Vegan up for lease By Sam Catanzaro A vegan restaurant in Santa Monica...

Risks Posed by Wildfire Smoke

September 22, 2020

September 22, 2020

UCLA pulmonologist on how people can tell if the wildfires are making them sick By Toi Creel Even if you...