The holidays are upon us. This year, it looks like all Santa Monicans want for Christmas is no new indoor mask mandates from Los Angeles County. In our latest Santa Monica Pulse Poll, 67 percent of respondents opposed implementing indoor mask mandates. 28 percent said they supported mask mandates, and another three percent were unsure.
We also asked residents to weigh in on the potential impact of several new development applications. After failing to adopt a compliant housing element, Santa Monica has received 16 development applications under the “Builder’s Remedy” law. The proposed 4,500 units would be double the total built in the last 20 years, with no established way for the city to stop the projects. The majority (65 percent) of respondents believe these developments will make Santa Monica less livable. Only nine percent said they thought the developments would make the city more livable. Another 16 percent said they were unsure.
When it comes to tackling crime, we had residents respond to several instances this year where individuals arrested for violent crimes in Santa Monica were subsequently released from jail. Many went on to commit more crimes. When asked if they agreed the city should do a better job holding violent repeat offenders accountable for their crimes, including for instance longer jail time, the vast majority (91 percent) agreed. Only five percent disagreed and another two percent were unsure.
Finally, as we head into a new year and a new City Council, we asked residents if they believe the city is headed in the right direction. 15 percent said the city was headed in the right direction, while 43 percent said it was not. A large percentage (41 percent) said they were not sure. It looks like the new City Council will have an opportunity to make up the minds of these undecided residents in 2023.