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Friday, September 20, 2019

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EXTRA Santa Monica Resident Charged with Alleged Involvement in Healthcare Fraud Schemes
September 20, 2019 -- Santa Monica resident Sara Soultani was among 25 defendants charged for their alleged involvement in healthcare fraud schemes that sought more than $150 million in payments, federal prosecutors announced Friday.

Barricaded Suspect Prompts Major Police Response
September 20, 2019 -- A man who barricaded himself behind a dumpster at a Santa Monica auto dealership was apprehended early Friday morning after a standoff with police that lasted several hours.

Santa Monica Hosts Walk to End Alzheimer’s Sunday
September 20, 2019 -- The Alzheimer’s Association will hold a walk in Santa Monica on Sunday to raise awareness and funds to battle the mentally crippling disease. The annual walk will begin at 10:30 a.m. in Tongva Park across from Santa Monica City Hall.

Union Facts Council Deaf to Housekeepers

Students Who Participate in Global Climate Strike Will Be Marked "Unexcused," District Officials Say
September 19, 2019 -- Santa Monica and Malibu students who skip class on Friday as part of the Global Climate Strike will receive an unexcused absence, District officials said Thursday.

OPINION -- Local 11's Changing Definition of Workplace Safety
September 19, 2019 -- After a lawsuit challenged Long Beach's authority to cap housekeeper workloads by square footage, the hotel union denied its original description of the law's purpose.

Yahoo! Removes Story Based on Santa Monica Paper's "Satirical Post"
September 18, 2019 -- Yahoo!'s news site on Wednesday removed an article based on a "satirical post" in a Santa Monica newspaper -- but not before a brief media storm sent the parties involved into damage control.

Felon Found Guilty of Fatal Stabbing in Tongva Park
Jessie Ramirez Perez September 18, 2019 -- A felon on probation was found guilty of second degree murder in the fatal stabbing of a man sleeping on a park bench across from Santa Monica City Hall last year. Jessie Ramirez Perez, faces 15 years to life in prison, police said Wednesday.

City Offers Grants to Enliven Reed Park
September 18, 2019 -- The City of Santa Monica is offering $500 grants for winning ideas to activate Reed Park and bring more people together, officials announced Wednesday.

Santa Monica Bank Robber Wanted for 'Cultural Appropriation,' News Site Reports
September 17, 2019 -- A story posted Tuesday on the Yahoo! news site reports that an at-large bank robber wearing a "Day of the Dead" mask is wanted by Santa Monica police for "cultural appropriation."

Long Beach Hotel Workers Ordinance Gets Court Hearing Next Month
September 17, 2019 -- A challenge to the Long Beach law that served as a model for Santa Monica's hotel workers ordinance is headed to Los Angeles County Superior Court next month.

Kids at 15th Anual PALpalooza Kids Flock to 15th Annual PALpalooza at Pacific Park
September 17, 2019 -- On Friday, hundreds of kids from Police Activities League (CalPAL) chapters across Southern California were treated to a free fun-filled evening at Pacific Park.

Santa Monica Hotel Settles Worker Complaints with Labor Board
September 16, 2019 -- The JW Marriott Le Merigot in Santa Monica last week agreed to pay more than $35,000 in worker bonuses and offered to reinstate a fired worker as part of a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board, union officials announced Monday.

Santa Monica Lawmaker's Plastic Recycling Bill Fails to Win Support
September 16, 2019 -- (UPDATED) Santa Monica State Senator Ben Allen vowed Monday to bring back a bill that would phase out the sale and distribution of single-use plastics after California lawmakers adjourned early Saturday without taking action.

Four Drivers Arrested for DUI at Friday's Checkpoint in Santa Monica
September 16, 2019 -- Santa Monica police made four DUI arrests at a checkpoint Friday to screen for motorists driving under the influence, officials said Monday.

SPECIAL REPORT Santa Monica Tops List of California Cities with Biggest Pensions
August 13, 2019 -- The City of Santa Monica this year will make separate payments to 28 retired employees whose pensions were so large they exceeded IRS limits, an analysis of pension data by The Lookout found. In fact, Santa Monica had more retirees whose pensions exceeded the federal limit than any other city in the state.

Suspected Burglar Hospitalized After Police-Involved Shooting
September 13, 2019 -- A suspected burglar was shot and wounded by Santa Monica police Thursday evening after he barricaded himself in a backyard with a gun, where he was confronted by police and taken into custody.

Learn How to Keep Children Safe Online at the Santa Monica Library
September 13, 2019 -- As part of National Cybersecurity Month, the Santa Monica Public Library will present a series of free classes next month to help keep children safe online.

Battle Over 'McMansions' Escalates in Santa Monica as New Standards Head to Council
Monster Mansion Mailer detail September 12, 2019 -- In the image, a masked burglar who resembles a terrorist is breaking into a home to steal its value. The postcard -- mailed to Santa Monica homeowners this week -- is an effort to rally them before the Council considers proposed revisions to curb the size of Santa Monica homes.

Santa Monica Police to Conduct Second DUI Checkpoint in Three Weeks on Friday
September 12, 2019 -- As Santa Monica police prepare to conduct their 15th DUI checkpoint since 2016 on Friday and the second in the past three weeks, data released by the department shows the extent of the problem of driving under the influence.

COAST Creates Slice of Car-Free Life in Santa Monica
Coast icon detail September 12, 2019 -- On Sunday, attendees at Santa Monica's COAST celebration will "bike, skate, scoot, run, walk and roll" along two miles of city streets that will be closed to traffic from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., City officals said.

Santa Monica Tightens Loopholes in Home-Sharing Law
September 11, 2019 -- The City Council on Tuesday closed a series of loopholes in Santa Monica's home-sharing law that allowed a house on upscale Adelaide Drive to be rented as a quasi youth hostel.

Back-to-School Fundraising Drive Nets Nearly $670,000
September 11, 2019 -- The Santa Monica Education Foundation's back-to-school fundraising campaign raised $669,222 from 798 donors to fund staff and programs at local public schools, the non-profit's officials said.

Santa Monica-Based Lab Targeted in New York Vaping Investigation
September 10, 2019 -- A Santa Monica-based lab is being subpoenaed by New York health officials investigating a nationwide outbreak of mysterious vaping-related lung illnesses, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Monday.

Santa Monica Bank Robber at Large After Extensive Police Search
Montana Avenue bank robber September 10, 2019 -- A masked robber who held up a bank on Montana Avenue Tuesday morning remains at large after police locked down two schools and conducted an extensive search of the area. The suspect -- who was carrying "a long barreled weapon"-- made off with more than $3,000 in cash.

LETTERS: Will the City Council Play Local 11's Game?
September 10, 2019 -- It's unlikely a public unmasking of the union's true motives will play out tonight. But we can always hope.

LETTERS -- Santa Monica Needs to Wake Up
September 10, 2019 -- It's our responsibility as voters to remove the Councilmembers from office and put in men and women who care about the voters and taxpayers more than their own personal greedy self interests.

EXCLUSIVE -- Most Union Housekeepers Have Heavier Workloads Than Required by Hotel Ordinance
September 9, 2019 -- The hotel union does not use the system it pushed for in an ordinance the City Council is expected to give final approval on Tuesday, generally resulting in heavier workloads for union housekeepers, the Lookout has learned.

Family of Man Killed by Expo Train in Santa Monica Sues Metro
September 9, 2019 -- The heirs of a man killed this year when he was struck by an Expo train in Santa Monica filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Metro last week.

Santa Monica Fire Department to Hold 9/11 Commemoration
9/11 Commemorative stamp September 9, 2019 -- On Wednesday, the Santa Monica Fire Department will honor the memories of those who died in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that included two residents of the beach city. The ceremonies will take place at four local fire stations starting promptly at 6:45 a.m.

Santa Monica to Boost Its Homeless Outreach Efforts
September 6, 2019 -- Santa Monica is posied to boost its homeless outreach efforts by spending an additional $2 million over the next two years.

Santa Monica College Kicks Off 19th Annual Fall Literary Series
September 6, 2019 -- From viewing gun rights and affirmative action through a constitutional lens to searching for an abiding image of LA, the Santa Monica College fall literary series provides plenty of food for thought.

LETTERS -- Don't Force Landlords Who Move Into Small Buildings to Pay Relocation Fees
September 6, 2019 -- If the City Council requires landlords to pay tenant relocation fees when they move into their buildings, many units will simply be left empty when tenants move out.

Bloom's Bill to Close Ellis "Loopholes" Headed for Governor's Signature
September 5, 2019 -- A Santa Monica lawmaker's bill that attempts to close loopholes in the Ellis Act was approved by the California Assembly Wednesday and is expected to be signed by the Governor into law.

Son of Man Killed Under Santa Monica Pier Sues City
September 5, 2019 -- A lawsuit was filed Wednesday charging the City and other parties with negligence in the death of a San Gabriel man assaulted by a serial killer under the Santa Monica Pier last year.

Santa Monica Police Captain to Head Force in Home of Microsoft
Police Captain Darrell Lowe September 5, 2019 -- Santa Monica Police Captain Darrell Lowe has been tapped to become the police chief of Redmond, Washington, the home of Microsoft. Lowe, a 26 year veteran of the force, was responsible for reconfiguring Santa Monica's police beats when the Expo line arrived in 2015.

Two Santa Monica Residents Among Dead in Diving Boat Fire
Marybeth Guiney September 4, 2019 -- Two Santa Monica residents were among the 34 people killed early Monday morning when a scuba diving boat caught fire near the Santa Cruz Islands. Charles McIlvain and Marybeth Guiney were diving enthusiasts who lived in a condominium building on the 2600 block of Centinela Avenue.

Council Moves to Add Tenant Protections to Small Owner-Occupied Buildings
September 4, 2019 -- Santa Monica landlords who occupy their two-and three unit buildings may have to give tenants relocation payments if they jack up the rents.

Downtown Santa Monica Thriving But Faces Challenges, Officials Say
September 3, 2019 -- Thirty years after Downtown Santa Monica's moribund Third Street was transformed into the Promenade, its paved streets were visited by strollers more than 29.2 million times last year.

Santa Monica Moves to Tighten Home Sharing Law
September 3, 2019 -- The nation's strictest home sharing ordinance could be further tightened after the Santa Monica City Council directed staff to look for ways to limit hostel-style operations.

OPINION -- The Planning Commission Should Hit Pause on Pico Boulevard Changes
September 3, 2019 -- The proposed zoning changes for Pico Boulevard are part of a City-run pro-gentrification project to push out what government officials consider undesirable businesses and residents.

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