Video: League of Women Voters and Santa Monica Next City Council Candidate Forum


If you couldn’t make it out last Monday for the City Council candidate forum cohosted by the League of Women Voters of Santa Monica and Santa Monica Next, you’re in luck. The video is now online.

Due to technical difficulties, the above video includes all of the forum except the candidates closing statement. You can see their closing statements here. They start at roughly the 11 minute mark.

We tackled topics ranging from parking, to housing, to Expo, and other major issues facing the city with the 14 candidates running for the three seats on the City Council.

Opening introductions started with the question, “How did you get to tonight’s forum?” Starting at the 4:30 mark, candidates had to respond in one or two words.

Round 1 begins at the 8 minute mark. All candidates answered the same question: “Santa Monica has managed to avoid a budget deficit through a two-pronged strategy that includes cutting expenses and increasing revenue when possible. If elected, you will have to pass the City’s biennial budget in June. Based on the information you know now, what expenses would you cut or how would you increase revenues in order to keep Santa Monica in the black?”

During Round 2, which begins at the 18:15 mark, candidates were asked questions in groups of two or three. Topics included building a multi-generational city (21:20), aging in place (23:40), development trade-offs (27:45), Bergamot Station (30:30), and a question from Santa Monica Spoke (33:20).

Round 3 starts at the 36 minute mark. Each candidate got his or her own question.

  • Civic Center Plan, Jerry Rubin (36:25)
  • Civility in Public Discourse, Phil Brock (37:45)
  • Traffic, Terrence Later (39:20)
  • Big Blue Bus, Michael Feinstein (40:00)
  • Expo Light Rail, Pam O’Connor (42:24)
  • Civic Auditorium Funding, Kevin McKeown (43:50)
  • City Employees’ Pensions, Sue Himmelrich (45:50)
  • Santa Monica Airport, Jon Mann (47:45)
  • Parking at Expo Stations, Richard McKinnon (49:30)
  • Ending Suburban Sprawl, Frank Gruber (51:47)
  • Supporting Car-Free Households, Jennifer Kennedy (53:33)
  • Homelessness and Social Services, Whitney Scott Bain (55:18)
  • Education Funding, Zoe Muntaner (56:43)
  • Neighborhood Preservation and Concentrated Growth, Nick Boles (58:00)

During Round 4, which starts at 59:50, candidates each had a chance to pick a question from either Round 2 or Round 3 to answer.

Starting at the 1:18:30 mark, candidates participated in a lightning round, during which they indicated how they would vote on the five measure on the November ballot.

As mentioned above, the complete footage of the candidates’ closing statements is available here, starting at the 11 minute mark.

Jason Islas
Jason Islas
Jason Islas is the editor of Santa Monica Next and the director of the Vote Local Campaign. Before joining Next in May 2014, Jason had covered land use, transit, politics and breaking news for The Lookout, the city’s oldest news website, since February 2011.


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