As local hospitals and intensive care units threaten to overflow while the coronavirus surges through the region, Mayor Todd Gloria signed an executive order allowing for fines up to $1,000 for those who blatantly defy provisions of State orders or the San Diego County public health order. The executive order also limits parking enforcement to aid with California’s stay-at-home orders.
Gloria urged residents and businesses to comply with current public health guidance from the State of California and San Diego County public health officials.
“... it is more important than ever to heed the guidance of health officials at all levels and take the necessary precautions against the spread of COVID-19,” Gloria said. “We owe it to the overburdened healthcare workers, all those suffering from economic hardships and the 1,400 San Diego families who lost a loved one to this terrible virus to do everything in our power to stop this devastation from dragging on any longer than it must. COVID-19 is not a joke – this is a matter of life or death.”
To aid neighborhoods that have limited parking for residents, the City of San Diego will no longer enforce parking meter violations, time-limited parking, yellow commercial zones and short-term green zones. Red, white and blue parking areas will continue to be enforced to maintain public safety.
Gloria’s executive order also reinforces current state and county public health orders, which include:
· The prohibition of private gatherings of any size
· All retailers operating indoors must do so at no more than 20% capacity
· No on-site consumption of food or drinks, including a ban on outdoor dining
· Face coverings must be worn outside of the home, with specific exceptions as outlined by the California Department of Public Health
· Nonessential work, movement and gatherings must stop between 10 p.m. and 5 p.m.
· All businesses not meeting the definition of essential business or State authorized sectors are considered “nonessential businesses” and must remain closed
Gloria has also directed the San Diego Police Department to coordinate enforcement actions with the City Attorney, as well as county and state partner agencies.
San Diego City Council President Jennifer Campbell said:
“I applaud Mayor Gloria for acknowledging the continued COVID-19 health crisis by increasing enforcement of the recent health orders. The majority of San Diegans are taking appropriate measures to keep themselves and others safe by wearing a mask and not gathering. Those knowingly and willfully choosing to not follow public heath guidelines deserve to be held accountable. With a vaccine on the horizon, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, let us be united in our defeat of this virus.”
San Diego City Council President Pro Tem Stephen Whitburn said:
“I fully support the Mayor’s decision to require compliance with the public health orders. His action today will save lives and enable us to reopen the economy as soon as possible. Since asking people to stay home creates parking challenges for residents in the city’s urban center and elsewhere, I thank the Mayor for relaxing the parking regulations during this time. No one should get a parking ticket for doing the right thing to help stop the spread of this virus.”
San Diego Councilmember Sean Elo-Rivera said:
“COVID-19 continues to be a tragic public health crisis with too many families losing loved ones and an economic disaster that is especially unfair to small businesses. Unfortunately, a small percentage of business owners are refusing to comply with public health orders and, as a result, are contributing to prolonging the health and economic crises. I applaud the Mayor's Executive Order as we must not stand by idly as a few bad actors risk the community’s well-being and I thank the many businesses that are prioritizing the health of their employees and community members by following public health orders.”
San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said:
“We have to face the reality that our region is facing a great threat from the spread of COVID-19. We are grateful to those individuals who are following the public health orders but must have widespread cooperation to slow the spread and stabilize our healthcare system.”
Brett McClain, Chief Operating Officer at Sharp HealthCare said:
“San Diego’s healthcare system is stretched to capacity. We are pleading with the public to abide by the Public Health Order, and we applaud Mayor Gloria’s leadership in directing City resources toward enforcing these life-saving measures.”
Per public health guidelines, Gloria urges San Diegans to avoid gatherings and non-essential activities, practice social distancing, thoroughly wash their hands with soap and use hand sanitizer.
For more information on the California “Stay At Home” order, including what’s closed, what’s open and which industries are exempted by the state, please visit COVID19.ca.gov.
For information regarding COVID-19 cases and directives from County of San Diego public health officials, please visit coronavirus-sd.com. Text “COSD COVID19” to 468-311 for text alert updates.
For updates on City of San Diego services, programs, links to helpful information and steps the public can take to help reduce the spread of the disease, visit sandiego.gov/coronavirus.