The Bayside District Corporation is spearheading the ìBuy Local Santa Monicaî campaign in partnership with the City of Santa Monica to promote sustainability and support the local economy.

Bayside District officials said the eight-week campaign that will take a personal look at Santa Monica businesses will raise awareness of the economic and environmental benefits to encourage people to buy local.

ìWe are very excited about this program,î said Bayside executive director Kathleen Rawson. ìItís so important ñ environmentally, economically and emotionally ñ to nurture the relationships right here in our backyard.î

City Manager Lamont Ewell agrees.

ìHaving the community come together in support of one another is essential to our getting through these difficult economic times,î he said. ìShopping locally not only helps to achieve this objective, it also helps to reduce carbon emissions. In the end, we become an economically stronger and healthier community.î

Thirty-two downtown businesses will be highlighted during the campaign.

Baysideís partners in this initiative include the Office of Sustainability and the Environment, the Economic Development Department, CityTV and Santa Monica Daily Press.

A Web page at that highlights the importance of buying local is launching this month. The site includes facts about Buy Local Santa Monica, information on how local businesses can get more involved in the program, as well as links to what other cities are doing.

Jennifer Taylor, senior administrative analyst at the cityís Economic Development Department, said the city wants to awaken appreciation for the diverse range of businesses available in Santa Monica.

ìThere is a huge range of products and services that we have right here in our community,î she said. ìWhen youíre supporting local businesses, youíre supporting the local community, employees, and neighbors and youíre keeping money in the community.î

Information,, or (310) 393-8355.