Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Articles written by Katie Wilmshurst

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  • City Council Election Race Begins as SMCLC Kicks of Candidate Endorsements

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jul 21, 2014

    The race has begun as the nomination period commences, looking for candidates to run for the elections on November 4. Occupancies include three City Council seats, three Rent Control Board seats, four Board of Education seats and four Santa Monica City College trustee seats. As the City Registrar completes the signature counts for nominations, we take a look at who could be taking these seats in the fall. The local political season swung into high gear with endorsements flowing and candidates...

  • Protests Over Gaza Offensive Spread To Westwood

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jul 14, 2014

    Last Tuesday, the front of the Israeli Consulate on Wilshire Boulevard was the site of major protest against the latest Israeli bombing of the Gaza Strip. Protesters, including students activists, locals and organizations such as CodePink and Jewish Voice For Peace, chanted slogans and read messages from Gaza, and Palestinian flags filled the air. The gathering was inspired by the latest uptick in Middle East tensions, as the right-wing government of Benjamin Netanyahu intensifies its military...

  • Pono in Hawaiian means done 'the right way'- and at Pono Burger they're not wrong

    Katie Wilmshurst and Beth Lindly, Special to the Observer|Jul 14, 2014

    Since May 2013, the Quonset hut in Santa Monica has been transformed into a great organic burger restaurant. With the return of summer and strawberry season came the return of their very best Sweet Mona Burger to their menu- and we just had to check it out. The first thing you notice is the mouth watering aromas- well, the first thing that really hits you is that you're in an old war hut, but soon enough your stomach is growling and you're ready to tuck in. Pono Burger really is one of a kind-...

  • New Ballot Measures Swallow Up Airport Discussions

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jul 7, 2014

    The City Council's consideration to put forward a ballot measure that would lessen the restrictions of council's power to control Santa Monica airport is being overshadowed by two new companion measures on real estate transfer tax and affordable housing, which appear to have a stronger connection to Santa Monican's and their daily life. The first measure would set the real estate transfer tax at 0.009% of sales price for all real estate transfers over $1 million, while the second would be an...

  • Petition Wars Over Santa Monica Pony Rides

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jul 7, 2014

    In the words of animal rights figurehead Cesar Chavez, " we know we cannot be kind to animals until we stop exploiting them". However, disputes are rising as to where the line can be drawn between labour animals and downright cruelty. Since 2006, Tawni Angel's Pony Rides at the Santa Monica Farmer's Market has brought weekly excitement for kids learning about animals. Yet recently animal rights activist Marcy Winograd has been pushing for an end to what she calls "animal cruelty" with her...

  • Celebrate July 4 With A Bang- But Without The Fireworks

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jun 30, 2014

    With Independence Day fast approaching, the celebrations getting underway, and the fire department sending a vital press release, we take a quick look back at what brought about our annual Fourth of July Parade in Santa Monica. At 9:30am this Friday, the Ocean Park Association (OPA) will take its 1.5 mile route around Santa Monica, from the Pico Boulevard and Main Street, south on Main, turning west on Marine Street, onto Barnard Way and concluding south of Ocean Park Boulevard. But 30 years...

  • Edison Plans 8% Hike Due To Polar Vortex

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jun 30, 2014

    Tensions are rising along with electricity bills, as the price increase in natural gas due to winter's polar vortex catches up with consumers. Wednesday's Terrence News briefing saw Southern Californian energy company Edison propose an 8% average increase on our monthly bills, as a result of the coldest winter in 32 years. As the consequent boom in heating use saw a huge rise in the price of natural gas from power plants, these companies are increasing rates to make up for the loss. But is it...

  • Concerns Deepen As Uber Protests Drive On

    Katie Wilmshurst, Special to the Observer|Jun 30, 2014

    Since its launch in Los Angeles in March 2012, Uber has generated an enormous user base and is now valued at over $18.2 billion. Yet its drivers are becoming increasingly dissatisfied with their treatment in the workplace, and Tuesday saw the first event where drivers from Uber itself took up the majority of the stand. Teamsters Local 986 Union and members of the I Am A Driver group have been expressing their discontent and have generated a huge talking point in the community. The stand on...

  • City Council Stubs Out Public E-Cigarettes

    Katie Wilmshurst|Jun 23, 2014

    Following the city council's meeting on Tuesday evening, action has been put forth on banning the public use of e-cigarettes. The unanimous decision is raising questions over the validity of this new generation of smoking, particularly as now over 45 cities in California are getting behind the ban. E-cigarettes hit the US market in 2008, and have since boomed across the world. The e-cigarette stimulates tobacco smoking by vaporizing a mixture of propylene glycol, nicotine and various...

  • Is Santa Monica Becoming a Santa Mega-opolis?

    Katie Wilmshurst|Jun 23, 2014

    by Katie Wilmshurst Many Santa Monicans are concerned about the upcoming development project scheduled for Arizona Avenue, as its hearing at the city council looms. The unanimous approval to go ahead with the 148 foot tall build over the compromised 84 foot alternative has sparked tensions from the community. Its 12 stories, designed by architect firm Rem Koolhaas and inspired by the hanging gardens of Babylon would transform the picturesque Santa Monica skyline, adding to the already dominating...