From COVID-19 and development to crime and politics as usual, 2021 was a busy year in the Santa Monica news cycle. As the year comes to a close, here are the top stories from each month.
Tensions Flare at Santa Monica City Council Meeting
January 28, 2021 – Tensions flared and pointed accusations were raised at this week’s Santa Monica City Council meeting among lawmakers during a debate over whether Councilmember Oscar de a Torre can participate in action surrounding a voting rights case brought against the city by his wife. Full article here.
Santa Monica Teen Dies From Fentanyl Overdose After Contacted by Dealer on Snapchat
February 11, 2021 – “Please watch your kids,” says the Santa Monica mother of a 16-year-old who recently died from a fentanyl overdose after a drug dealer contacted her son–a straight-A student getting ready for college–via Snapchat. Full article here.
All Santa Monica Schools to Reopen in April
March 30, 2021 – All Santa Monica public school students will have the option to return to the classroom in April. Full Article Here
Elon Musk Backs New Santa Monica Tesla Supercharging Station
April 11, 2021 – A new Tesla supercharging station spearheaded by billionaire Elon Musk could soon be headed to Santa Monica. Full article here.
Councilmember Kevin McKeown Abruptly Announces Retirement
May 26, 2021 – Longtime Santa Monica City Councilmember Kevin McKeown abruptly announced his retirement during a meeting this week. Full article here.
Santa Monica City Council Approves Main Street Weekend Closures
June 15, 2021 – Santa Monica lawmakers last week approved a pilot program to close a stretch of Main Street to traffic on select weekends throughout the summer. Full article here.
Water Near Santa Monica Pier Remains Questionable as Beach Closures Lifted Following Sewage Discharge
July 15, 2021 – Beach closures have been lifted following the discharge of 17 million gallons of raw sewage into Santa Monica Bay but at some beaches–including near Santa Monica Pier–the water currently contains high levels of bacteria, potentially due to the spill. Full article here.
Editorial: Unprofessionalism and Racial Insensitivity at Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. Leaves a Lot to Be Desired
August 20, 2021 – A recent incident in which an executive at Downtown Santa Monica, Inc. flippantly used the events of the holocaust in an attempt to push the agenda of the organization raises the question: is it time for new leadership at DTSM? Full article here.
Santa Monicans Frustrated After Getting Ticketed for Return of Weekly Street Sweeping
September 2, 2021 – Many Santa Monica residents are voicing frustration after getting hit with $73 parking tickets, saying they were not informed that weekly street sweeping returned to the city this week. Full article here.
Former Mesa PD Chief to Lead Santa Monica Police Department
October 15, 2021 – Ramon Batista, Jr., the former police chief of Mesa, Arizona, has been selected to lead the Santa Monica Police Department (SMPD). Full article here.
Santa Monica City Councilmember’s Music Store Robbed for the Second Time This Year
November 30, 2021 – Santa Monica City Councilmember Laura Negrete is co-owner of the Santa Monica Music Center, a family business, and the shop was robbed for the second time in three months. Full article here.
New LA County District for Santa Monica More Conservative
December 20, 2021 – Last week a new map for LA County Board of Supervisors districts went into effect with changes that make Santa Monica’s district more conservative. Full article here.