Major changes in Santa Monica city government began when, in 1979, Santa Monicans for Renters Rights (SMRR) succeeded with a rent control initiative; that election also brought in two city council members. In 1981, SMRR in coalition with the city's Democratic Club and other groups won majority control and implemented steps to control development and open city administration to popular participation.

The experience of progressive government in Santa Monica is referenced in a number of books. See Stella Capek and John Gilderbloom, Community versus Commodity: Tenants and the American City (1992) and Mark Kann, Middle Class Radicalism in Santa Monica (1986).

Recent Submissions

  • Principles of unity between members of the Santa Monicans for Renters Rights Coalition 

    Santa Monicans for Renters Rights (SMRR) (1981-01)
    This is a campaign statement and program adopted by Santa Monicans for Renters Rights (SMRR), the coalition formed from the Santa Monica Democratic Club, the local chapter of the Campaign for Economic Democracy and the ...
  • How the Progressives Won in Santa Monica 

    Shearer, Derek (1982)
    Rent control's passage in 1979 was the electoral breakthrough that established Santa Monicans for Renters Rights; SMRR's "Principles of Unity" laid out a comprehensive set of wider platform. The attainment of a solid ...


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