Facts You Need To KnowRelease Date: 2020-05-14
I’m grateful today to the community who is working hard to keep our hospitalizations flat and our reopening plan safe.
There’s also some misinformation and questions the city is receiving which I’m going to clarify. Facts and truth in a pandemic are critical to fighting this virus, so here’s some:
1. Long Beach has currently reopened all the retail and storefront businesses that are legally allowed under State Law. Many folks for example want us to open restaurants and barber shops tomorrow. I understand that since it’s devastating to the owners and workers. But we can’t. It’s not allowed under State Law. Once the Governor announces the next stage of openings - only then can we look at health indicators and begin reopening.
2. Yes we have our own Health Department, but the State Health Orders supersede our city and any county orders. Simply put, we can’t move faster than the State allows.
3. Yes, the State has an expedited track to reopen restaurants more quickly - however, that program was set up by the Governor for rural counties with few to no deaths and cases. Long Beach does not qualify. LA does not qualify. Orange County does not qualify. So instead, we use the baseline State Health Order as guidance. The Order allows for retail curbside pick up and some recreation - both of which we are doing.
4. Long Beach is currently in Stage Two. We can go no further on retail or restaurants until a) the State modifies it’s Health Order and b) our health indicators remain flat with no large spikes.
5. Reopening decisions within a Stage are made with the recommendations of doctors and health officials. Our local officials talk daily with LA County, California, and CDC experts and scientists.
6. Our positive working relationships with Governor Newsom, Mayor Garcetti, the LA County Board of Supervisors, and leaders in Orange County is a great thing and is helping us keep our city safe. I’m in constant communication with all of them because what happens in Los Angeles and Orange County will impact Long Beach, and vice versa.
Facts matter. Science matters. If you have a question about anything I’ve written above feel free to ask us. Thank you and Go Long Beach.
Mayor Robert Garcia