Twice a year, once in the summer and once at the end of the year, Santa Monica Next reaches out to you, our readers, to ask you to donate funds to help us continue to publish and expand the work we do. This summer, we’re celebrating a new look and expanded format for our website and celebrating that, for the third year in a row, Santa Monica Next is the only publication in Santa Monica to be recognized for excellence in journalism by the Los Angeles Press Club.

Already convinced? Click here to visit the Santa Monica Next donation page. If you want to donate online and don’t like PayPal, we’ve set up an alternate donation page at Public Good.

Even though he was only with us for half-a-year in 2016, our editor Jason Islas has two stories that are finalists at the upcoming L.A. Press Club Awards Ceremony in the “news” and “hard news feature” award categories.

In the category “news,” the story “A New State Report Explains Why Your Rent Is So High, Offers A Solution” from February of 2016 reviews and explains a complicated report from the California’s Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) and what its finding means for the overheated local housing market. In the “hard news feature” category, Islas is honored for “Fake News: Santa Monica Edition” which clearly demonstrates how the national scourge of fake news can take root in even a progressive enclave such as Santa Monica.

And while Next and Islas are being honored for some of his best work, we’ve also taken pains this year to expand our regular coverage to be more of a local news source than just a niche publication that covers urban design, transportation reform, public health, housing and open space.

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To accomplish this, we’ve added a “newswire section” which publishes public interest press releases. We’ve begun a local sports section and our coverage has begun with publishing the weekly youth basketball newsletter from the local YMCA. We also ran a video series featuring events and places that help make Santa Monica such a great place to live, work, and play.

We want to do more of this work, while continuing to support the excellent work being done by Islas (who was also honored by the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce and was selected by his peers as one of two “Democrats of the Year” in State Assembly District 50 recently).

To do that, we need your help. Click here to visit the Santa Monica Next donation page and help us out. If you want to donate online and don’t like Paypal, we’ve set up an alternate donation page at Public Good.