Living La Vida Local

much as 500% in the past 15 years. Not to mention, our population has soared. In 2006, the nighttime population of Santa Monica was 85,000. We grow to a sizable 225,000 by day. About 70% of our residents rent. Our taxes are higher (1.5% vs. 1.25% for the City of Los Angeles),We have special subsidies for the homeless ($8 per  tax payer), and our very special rent control board (who allowed landlords to raise their rent 2.3% this year - City of L.A. allows a 4% increase). So much to know. So much to share.

Come to  - where Santa Monica goes to collect its thoughts.



According to the National Association of Realtors, 22 percent of all home purchases are made by single women as opposed to only 9 percent for single males. In other words, single Gen X and Gen Y women are buying more than twice as much real estate as compared to Gen X and Gen Y men.

What accounts for these differences? Consider the following facts:

  1. According to the U.S. Census, 51 percent of all women in the United States live without a spouse.

  2. Women now account for 57 percent of all college graduates.

  3. Women continue to outpace men in terms of longevity. Women between the ages of 50 and 70 are not only inheriting their parents' wealth, many have had their own careers where they have accumulated substantial sums of their own money. If they were married, they may also inherit (or obtain in a divorce settlement) part of what their husbands have accumulated as well.

  4. While women continue to be under-represented as CEOs in Fortune 500 companies, an increasing number of small businesses are now owned and operated by women. A substantial number of these women work from home.



 thank you for your news letters…i am a registered civil engr.  before changing the  mix of cement, state and federal agencies  must test and approve them ( to meet building codes) . i believe 1 of the 8 wonders of the modern world is the invention of cement as and additive to make concrete. i support green power, but in moderation.  i could  go on  and on for hrs on  this subject ( nuclear reactors for electric power, drilling in anwar alaska....)



Subject: Santa Monica Conservancy Downtown Walking Tour

Thanks, Jodi. 

 I actually had seen your walking tours - and was very impressed with them. 

Would you consider announcing our Downtown Walking Tour on your website and/or newsletter? You have so much wonderful landmark information on your website - I think our Conservancy tour would make an excellent addition.  We've been getting rave reviews from tour participants.
Downtown Walking Tour
Santa Monica Conservancy



Presented by the Santa Monica Conservancy Saturday mornings at 10 AM

In two hours and six blocks, this new tour explores more than 130 years of Santa Monica history from its wild west frontier beginnings to the metropolis of today. Starting from the 1875 Rapp Saloon, the route includes many landmarks and concludes at the 2003 NRDC building.

Tours depart every Saturday at 10 AM at Hostelling International, 1436 2nd St. Tickets are $10 for the general public, $5 for Conservancy members.
reservations are advised and can be made by calling (310) 496-3146 or email to, giving your name, date requested, number in party, and contact information.  Payment can be made on the Conservancy website, or with a check or exact change on the day of the tour.
Saturday doesn’t work for you? Booklets for self-guided tours providing a map and detailed information are available for $3 at the Visitors Center, 1920 Main Street, or the Hostelling International Travel Store at 1434 2nd Street.


Mortgage guarantees on Indian lands extended through 2012

Bush proposes boost in funding for Section 184 program

Congress has reauthorized and President Bush has signed legislation that's intended to increase home ownership among Native Americans by guaranteeing private mortgage loans on Indian lands.

The Native American Home Ownership Opportunity Act of 2007 is a five-year reauthorization of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Section 184 Loan Guarantee Program, which provides a 100 percent guarantee for mortgages on Indian lands.

The guarantees make it more attractive for private-sector lenders to make mortgage loans to eligible Natives American families, tribes, and tribal housing entities purchasing homes. The program can also be used to rehabilitate existing homes, build new homes and refinance higher-interest-rate loans.

Since it was created in 1992, the Section 184 program has guaranteed more than 4,500 loans totaling $573.1 million. President Bush's fiscal-year 2008 budget provides $367 million for the program, which would be a $251 million increase over the enacted 2006 budget and $116 million more than the 2007 request, according to a HUD press release.
Inman News


UCLA Anderson Forecast Invites Solutions for Our City

Open letters to Mayor Villaraigosa distributed at UCLA Anderson Forecast

LOS ANGELES - Anyone can identify a problem. The challenge is finding the solutions.

This spring, the UCLA Anderson Forecast accepted that challenge and, in turn, challenged a cross-section of prominent leaders from the worlds of business, politics, academics and public policy to not only identify the significant problems facing the City of Los Angeles, but to offer solutions to the serious issues facing the citizens of L.A.

As Forecast Director Edward Leamer wrote in the preface to a published collection of essays distributed at the June UCLA Anderson Forecasting Conference where Mayor Antonio Villaraigoso provided the keynote address, “… we cast the net widely, asking Angelenos representing every facet of life to offer their solutions in two-page op-ed pieces. We didn’t want to hear a litany of problems.—we wanted the solutions. What can our local and state government do? What can our businesses and our schools do? What can our families do? What can we as individuals do?

“And what if we all worked together?”

In all, more than three dozen essays from forty different authors were collected. The authors included Blair H. Taylor (’90), president and CEO, Los Angeles Urban League; Julia A. Stewart, President & CEO, IHOP Corporation (and member of the UCLA Anderson Board of Visitors) and Daniel J.B. Mitchell, Ho-Su Wu Professor, UCLA Anderson School of Management and UCLA School of Public Affairs.

The topics ranged from the obvious – traffic, education, affordable housing – to less obvious, but equally essential and intriguing areas of concern such as graffiti, volunteerism and building “green.” The essays are honest and though-provoking.

Most importantly, the essays provide a literary diving board from which we can leap into the deep end of issues facing the Los Angeles community and begin a dialogue. As Prof. Leamer wrote, “... a half-day to discuss these solutions is not going to miraculously solve all our problems. The conversation must go on.”

With that in mind, UCLA Anderson presents the essays as a living, evolving document and will periodically post additional solutions. “If you have a great idea,” Prof. Leamer adds, “or a half-baked idea, please make a visit and post it (here). It could make a difference.”


5 Ideas for Making a Property More Appealing
  1. Give the trim around the front door a fresh coat of paint, covering up fingerprints and dings.
  2. Fertilize the grass so it looks bright green.
  3. Hang a small flag that says “Welcome.”
  4. Place a big pot of yellow marigolds in the foyer — yellow makes people feel comfortable.
  5. Dribble a few drops of vanilla on the oven door and turn it to low (it’ll smell just like cookies are baking).


  • Census: US homeownership rate for 1Q07: 68.4% (4Q06: 68.9%)
  • Census: US homeowner vacancy rate for 1Q07: 2.8% (4Q06: 2.7%)