Changes Include opening of beaches and local economy
Oceanside CA— The Oceanside City Council Wednesday, during its scheduled council meeting gave direction to staffers to prepare a letter to be sent immediately to San Diego County Health and Human Services Officer, Wilma J. Wooten’s, M.D. demanding an amendment to county health orders surrounding COVID-19 to permit local agencies to decide when beaches, parks, harbor and local businesses can open.
The strong demand comes after weeks of economical shut down required by the current health Order including thousands of businesses deemed as non-essential to close and public amenities that lack enforcement of social distancing to be off limits.
The letter clarifies that Oceanside residents and businesses are fully capable of practicing social distancing and sanitary policies that current essential businesses follow.
A motion was made 2 weeks earlier by Councilman Rodriguez with hesitation by majority on council. “Oceanside has put forth extraordinary efforts to flatten the curve but as we push down the curve, like a large balloon, a new curve is created. In this case it is an unemployment and loss of essential revenues curve” Rodriguez said before making the motion Wednesday evening with 4-1 support (Sanchez No).
“San Diego County has relied on medical experts and science to flatten the curve and keep our residents safe and healthy and this should be our priority going forward as well,” said Council-member Ryan Keim. “I think we can do this while reevaluating what essential services are. Due to the speed and severity of the issue, many decisions were made quickly that we can now improve upon. We are seeing businesses that provide almost identical services but one is essential and one is not due to small differences. This has hurt many of our residents especially hard, especially in our lower and medium income areas. I think we need to make their well being a priority,” continued Council member Keim “Prioritizing our economy and following science and medical advice don’t have to be mutually exclusive and we can improve upon this.”
Council member Keim added “We can do two things at once. We can keep people safe. We can operate businesses safely if they follow rules within those medical guidelines and that is important to me.”
The letter demands changes to County Health Order be made immediately, but no later than 5/1/2020.