Opponents of SaMo anti-density campaign raise nearly $1M

Groups opposing the LUVE ballot initiatives garnered financial support from private residents and development stakeholders

Oct.October 06, 2016 12:15 PM

If it all comes down to money, the pro-development lobby has a leg up in Santa Monica.

Opponents of LUVE, the ballot initiative that would require all developments taller than two stories to gain community approval by popular vote, had raised $947,000 as of late September, thanks to private residents and deep-pocketed developers, according to the Santa Monica Lookout.

By comparison, Residocracy, the group behind the measure, had raised just $46,000, according to disclosure statements.

The two main opposition groups are Santa Monica Forward and Housing and Opportunity for a Modern Economy (HOME). The former had nearly 170 donations amounting to $585,000. Most contributors gave about $100, but there were a handful of development firms that wrote hefty checks, including Hudson Pacific Properties and Ocean Avenue LLC of Miramar Hotel, both of which gave $49,000. HOME had three main donors: NMS Properties, Century West Partners and the owner of the proposed mixed-use project at 525 Colorado Avenue. Century West gave $75,000.

Residocracy’s funds were raised mostly through small donations but include three larger contributions: $5,000 from investor Ishak Bibawi, $5,000 from Venice businessman Mark Sokol and $3,135 from retiree Thomas Epley. [SML]Cathaleen Chen

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