CARLSBAD, Calif. (KGTV) — Tuesday, Carlsbad's City Council leaders will discuss stricter enforcement options against businesses violating the county's public health orders.
The special meeting will see council leaders discuss a new order introduced by council member Cori Schumacher that would add teeth to the city's enforcement, making each violation an accumulative administrative citation, starting with warnings, then $100, $200, and $500 fines.
"This is really about getting to a point, with a five-member council, we can give very clear direction on what we expect out of our staff, and what we expect out of our community members when it comes to taking care of each other during a public health crisis," said Schumacher.
So far, Carlsbad Police officers have responded to violations of health orders with education, but willful violators have been referred to the county for documentation.
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Council members will also vote on a measure to enforce mask wearing along the city's boardwalks and seawall.
City leaders will meet at 3 p.m. to discuss enforcement options. Public comments can be emailed to the city by 2 p.m.
The actions are similar to decisions by Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear and San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria to crack down on businesses violating coronavirus-related restrictions to slow the spread of the virus, as cases surge across the state and country.
Many businesses across the county have vowed to stay open despite public health orders to close, some saying they've spent thousands of dollars to accommodate outdoor operations required by California's health orders. Many businesses say that staying open is a matter of surviving, not defying health orders.
California's regional stay-at-home orders have forced many businesses and entities to suspend indoor operations, restaurants to offer only takeout and/or delivery, and decrease capacity limits for other businesses.