Music to mix with salt air in downtown Hermosa

Jack Tracy.


by Dan Blackburn

Music will fill the air — at a reasonable level — to enhance local business and “lift spirits” after the Hermosa Beach City Council voted unanimously to temporarily lift restrictions on live and recorded music in both outdoor and indoor commercial settings. The ordinance, deemed an “urgency,” takes effect immediately.

Music will be allowed between the hours of 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.

The measure received enthusiastic endorsement from residents, causing Council Member Mary Campbell to remark, “We rarely have an issue with so much  public support, one that is so optimistic. This lifts spirits. This has my whole-hearted support. Go big and go bold, I say. This can make our comeback story really special.”

Mayor Justin Massey worried, “I hope this won’t turn into ‘Animal House,’” but supported the move.

City officials received nearly 70 written communications and heard 30 minutes of public comment, all supportive of the proposal. The pilot program can be terminated by council action or might be triggered by the end of Covid-19 restrictions. 

Jessica  Accamando, president of the Chamber of Commerce, told the council, “Music is the story of the city. The Chamber is prepared to help. And there are lots of very talented  musicians anxious to help.”

These are representative of residents’ comments:

Barclay Roach: “I love this city, and as a local musician and lover of music, I want us to get back to being able to entertain the public while supporting ourselves financially. This is something we all need.”

Megg Sulzinger: It goes without saying that I am 100 percent in support of bringing live music back to Hermosa. Our neighboring cities of Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, and Santa Monica have already supported, promoted and allowed live music. Now it’s time for Hermosa to catch up. Live music is the heart of our community and these hard working musicians have been out of work for over a year. Please help us bring the live back to this beautiful city we all love so much by allowing live music again.”

Russ Gilbert: “Live music has always been a key feature of Hermosa Beach and it’s time for this brief pause due to COVID-19 to come to a close. Having live music in our bars and restaurants not only drives the rich culture and community our city is known for, but it drives customers into our businesses and gives our local musicians the ability to support themselves. As we reopen, please remove whatever red tape and expenses exist that prevent all levels of music from street musicians to full bands performing in local venues from playing with as much expediency as possible.”

Robert Fortunato: “I appreciate and support the pilot project to bring back live music under safe conditions.”

Evan Frisch: “Lift the ban and let’s get live music back!”

In other action, the council:

— Received and filed, following a brief discussion, a plan to coordinate a variety of city services as post-Covid-19 restrictions are lifted. The plan, dubbed Hermosa SHINES, “will provide an outline of the community-wide reopening, recovery and resilience plan.” According to City Manager Suja Lowenthal, the plan “is the consolidation of ongoing and planned initiatives and projects from all city departments and will serve as a guide for the city’s work over the next 12-18 months.” She said a more detailed description, to be presented to the council at a later date, will show “how the city will safely restore in-person services at City Hall and city facilities while continuing to offer virtual and online services.”

— Approved, on a 4-0 vote, a first reading of a proposed ordinance “putting a little more teeth” in gun storage laws, according to Council Member Michael Detoy.

The expanded ordinance specifies that “except when carried on the person, during use for cleaning and maintenance, or during use for lawful self-defense, no person shall keep a firearm in any residence unless the firearm is stored in a locked container or is disabled with a trigger lock.”

— Heard a report from Chief of Police Paul LeBaron that four department officers have been certified as drone pilots, and assured the public that the drones will not be used to observe places where residents have  “a reasonable expectation of privacy.” ER


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Written by: Dan Blackburn

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