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This weekend, head to Santa Monica College for the annual “Celebrate America” fireworks show. Next week, the Ocean Park Association is looking for volunteers to help with its annual 4th of July parade. And the Santa Monica City Council will consider putting a measure on the November ballot that would help fund improvements to our schools and preservation of housing.

Celebrate America

This Saturday, June 25, starting at 4 p.m., head over to Santa Monica College to enjoy the annual “Celebrate America” festivities, free and open to the public.

SMC invites the community to picnic on Corsair field starting at 5 p.m. with entertainment starting at 7 p.m. The fireworks show is scheduled for 9 p.m.

This year, the Associated Students of SMC, in conjunction with the Westside Food Bank, are holding a food drive, so please bring nonperishable food to drop off at several locations.

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You will also have a chance to meet SMC’s new superintendent/president, Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffery.

When: Saturday, June 25 starting at 4 p.m.
Where: Corsair Field, 1900 Pico Boulevard, Santa Monica

Volunteer to Help OPA’s 4th of July Parade

The Ocean Park Association (OPA) needs your help to put on its 10th annual 4th of July Parade. The parade starts at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, July 4, but OPA is asking for volunteers to sign up now.

“Volunteers are needed for both pre-parade setup help if you are planning on being in the parade, and during the parade to help maintain our safe and fun environment,” according to the website for the parade, which will be on Monday, July 4.

“All setup shifts will need to arrive at or before 7:30am, all parade route volunteers will need to arrive at or before 9:00am. We will have coffee, water and snacks available for all as well as any and all materials,” the site says.

OPA is also looking for volunteers who own their own bikes to be a volunteer on a bike during the parade. To sign up as a volunteer, click here.

City Council Considers Housing, School Funding Measure

The Santa Monica City Council on Tuesday will consider placing two ballot measures before the voters in November designed to raise money to help preserve and create affordable housing as well as improve our schools.

“Advancing the Council’s strategic goal related to maintaining an inclusive and diverse community will rely on a robust and well-funded affordable housing program. Because funding for the City’s affordable housing programs was obliterated by the state’s elimination of the local redevelopment agency, Council and the Housing Commission have identified potential new funding sources for affordable housing,” according to the staff report.

The measure comes at a time when Santa Monica is struggling to maintain its commitment to economic diversity within its borders after the City saw its once-robust affordable housing funding dwindle from an average of $15 million a year to almost nothing in 2012 when Sacramento axed California’s 400 redevelopment agencies.

The staff report outlines several of the potential funding mechanisms, including a Documentary Transfer Tax, a Commercial Construction Tax, and a Transaction and Use Tax, all of which are explained in the staff report.

Like the city did in 2014 with Measures H and HH, the Council will consider a measure that will increase funding and an advisory measure about how to spend that measure.

This time around, the Council is considering including language that would also funnel money generated from the measure to schools and public parks.

The Council is only giving staff direction on Tuesday. Following the meeting, staff would return with ballot language for the Council to vote on at a later meeting.

When: City Hall, 1685 Main St, Santa Monica, CA 90401
When: Tuesday, June 28 at 6:30 p.m.