In what was at times another high-stakes, high-drama year across Santa Monica, here is The Mirror’s run-down of the top headlines from July 2012.
Please note that some of the stories mentioned took place up to a week before or after the publication date, depending on whether it was a recap or preview piece.
• A day of pride, patriotism, flag waving, and family fun was enjoyed by thousands at the Sixth Annual Santa Monica 4th of July Parade as it made its way down Main Street.
• The Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District announced it will cut about $2.5 million in spending for 2012-13.
• Pilot David G. Riggs who buzzed the Santa Monica Pier almost four years ago and was later convicted for recklessly operating an aircraft in violation of the California Public Utilities Code had his probation reportedly revoked by a Los Angeles Superior Court commissioner for failure to complete community service.
• City council members considered how to maintain Santa Monica’s diverse charm and distinct communities as part of a study session on neighborhood conservation.
• Santa Monica detectives investigated the City’s first homicide of the year after resident Ryan Taylor Bright stabbed Laguna Beach’s Jensen Gray at a party at Archstone Santa Monica apartments, located at 425 Broadway.
• Four of the six Council members voted in favor of an ordinance that proposed banning smoking for new occupancies of multiunit residences.
• A proposed plan to provide flight schools at Santa Monica Airport a cash incentive to carry out their take-off and landing practices to nearby airports was indefinitely tabled by Council members.
• Council members voted to reduce free two-hour parking to free 90-minute parking come October following a number of changes to parking rates across the City.
• Preliminary plans for a mixed-use project in Santa Monica at 3401 Pico Boulevard were met with apprehension from residents at the Planning Commission as the project called for 300 residential units, more than 500 parking spaces, and about 5,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial area.
• Council members unanimously approved a ballot measure that would limit general adjustments for rent controlled units to 75 percent of the annual percentage change of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) with a zero to six percent adjustment range.
• Council members voted to tear down the California Incline in fall 2013 with the rebuilding project expected to take between 12 and 18 months to complete.
• Council members met to determine whether developer Marc Luzzatto could proceed with his plans to convert the Village Trailer Park from a trailer park into a mixed-use project complete with apartments, condominiums, office units, park space, and more. No decision was made after five hours of deliberation.
• The RAND Corporation was given the go ahead by Council members to scrap some of its parking spaces and convert them into more than 17,000 square feet of office space.
• In perhaps what was one of the rarest occurrences in Santa Monica governance, an ordinance banning smoking in multi-unit residences failed to muster enough votes in its second reading that would have made the ordinance law just two weeks after Council green-lit the first reading.