PALM SPRINGS — The Palm Springs City Council during a two-hour emergency meeting today, March 17, directed City Manager David H. Ready to order the closure of every nonessential business.

Ready, who has been at the forefront of closing bars, wineries, cannabis lounges, and declaring a local emergency, is expected to draft the order today so it can take effect at 7 a.m. Wednesday, March 18.

Kors repeatedly emphasized that more than 40% of the city’s residents are over age 60 with another 10% or more with compromised immune systems.

The order will be modeled after the one the city and county of San Francisco issued Monday.

The so-called “essential businesses” in San Francisco include healthcare operations; grocery stores, certified farmers’ markets and food banks; businesses that provide food, shelter and social services for lower-income people; newspapers, television, radio and other media services; gas stations and auto supply and repair shops; banks; hardware stores, and other services.

Dine-in service at restaurants will no longer be allowed, although takeout and delivery will remain options.

The City Council is expected to ratify the emergency orders on Thursday at its regularly scheduled City Council meeting. The order is to remain in effect April 2 when it will be re-evaluated.

“The goal is to get people to do the right thing,” Mayor Kors said. His colleagues resounding lauded Kors and Ready for their tireless leadership on the COVID-19 issue.

The directive followed conversations Kors said he had with Democratic Congressman Raul Ruiz, M.D.,  and Dr. Cameron Kaiser, Riverside County Public Health Officer.

It also came amid news that Riverside County has recorded a third death due to the worldwide coronavirus pandemic.

“We want to be as measured as we possibly can be,” Councilmember Lisa Middleton said.

An eviction restriction ordinance is forthcoming.

City Councilors sat 6 feet apart and the public was not allowed in the City Council Chambers. Those who wanted to offer public comment phoned in.

As the Palm Springs City Council continues to address the pandemic, the number of meetings will be reduced and will focus primarily on COVID-19 and issues related to it.



Image Sources

  • Sorry We’re Closed: Shutterstock