2014 in Review: March

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Family and friends of the new Malibu Mayor, Skylar Peak, joined the 29-year-old as he took the mayoral oath Monday night at City Hall. 

-The battle over commercial development in the Civic Center area moved front and center with an initiative sponsored by Rob and Michele Reiner, which became known as Measure R after more than 2,300 petition signatures were gathered. The Measure was intended to put limits on national chains, the size of centers and ultimately to give voters a say at the ballot box, center by center.

-The City of Malibu issued violation notices to the rehabilitation facility Passages Malibu, alleging the facility had violated the Malibu Municipal Code because it was using guest houses as separate residences. The city also lobbied the state, which sets the rules for facilities with six or less beds.

-The City Council approved a five-year deal to lease the city-owned 532-acre Charmlee Wilderness Park to the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy for control of 83-acre Bluffs Park in return. If the agreement continues smoothly, they intend to make the swap permanent in five years, maybe sooner. 

-The presences of PCBs at Malibu High School and possibly other schools galvanized many parents and environmental advocates, and a new umbrella group called Malibu Unites was formed to advocate for environmental safety, with Jennifer deNicola as its president.

-Plans for a community radio station, KBU 97.5 FM, moved ahead with a recent approval from the FCC to allow for a transmitter in west Malibu. For radio today, modern technology requires a computer and a soundboard — all small enough to be kept in a closet.

-The City Council voted unanimously to make Skylar Peak the new mayor, effectively sanctioning his return to their good graces after a somewhat rocky start on the council.