California restaurants challenge regional lockdown as a means of ‘survival’

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Some restaurant owners in California are defying lockdown orders to ensure their survival.

Two restaurateurs, hundreds of miles apart in the Golden State, had followed strict safety procedures when they reopened their restaurants this summer, the first time since March.

However, for Jimmy Eliopoulos, owner of Crumbs in Contra Costa County, and Dino Ferraro, owner of Capone’s Italian Cucina and Black Trumpet Bistro in Orange County, the latest three-week ban on the food service has gone too far. .

THE BAN ON OUTDOOR DINING OF CORONAVIRUS, CEO OF THE CALIFORNIA RESTAURANT ASSOCIATION, WILL BE LIFTED BY THE COURTS

On Monday, many areas of the state were mandated to comply with Governor Newsom’s directive regional order of stay at home, which limits the pick-up and delivery of restaurants to only three weeks.

Eliopoulos said KRON4 that now is not a good time to close alfresco dining and plans to keep the service open.

“It’s a matter of survival,” Eliopoulos said.

Likewise, Ferraro told the Los Angeles Times that he “experiment” with remaining open at both locations. In doing so, it offers alfresco dining with indoor tables spaced 12 feet apart.

Eliopoulos further argued that the decision is not fair for small businesses.

CALIFORNIA RESTAURATOR SWORDS TO FIGHT FOR ITS RESTAURANTS, ITS EMPLOYEES AS THE STATE BANS OUTDOOR DINING

“The target is open. Others are open, “he said.” It’s not fair. “

For Ferraro, he now has to worry about the masses of bills, which now amount to more than $ 100,000 in overdue rents, the Times reported.

The loss of this service only pushes restaurants that are still reeling from the limited capacity restrictions implemented earlier this year into financial trouble.

Capone's Italian Cucina (Google)

Capone’s Italian Cucina (Google)

This is all the more worrying as companies have invested thousands of dollars in safety equipment in order to comply with the restrictions. Before closing, alfresco dining had been a lifeline for many places.

“Businesses across the county have invested thousands of dollars to keep their employees and customers safe before being punished for the recent surge that they have done everything in their power to prevent,” he said. Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger said.

On Tuesday, a judge temporarily blocked Los Angeles County’s order to ban the food service. However, the regional derogatory stay-at-home order still limits restaurants and bars to take-out and deliveries only.

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Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said a lack of face masks in restaurants makes the data on the increase in cases “clear at every level you look at.”

“I don’t think there is any debate that when people are near other people who are not part of their household, they don’t wear masks and mingle for long periods of time talking , sing, share – there is an increased risk of transmission, ”Ferrer said Monday, according to KTLA.

Newsom’s latest effort to prevent people from reuniting with others outside their homes divides the state into five regions and ties business closures and travel restrictions to hospital intensive care capacity. When a region has less than 15% of its intensive care beds, new restrictions are imposed.

Even though California has nearly 1.4 million cases, Ferrer stressed that “we can expect an alarming increase in hospitalizations and deaths in the coming weeks.”

“The actions each of us take will or will destroy our collective ability to prevent many people from becoming infected, seriously ill and potentially dying from COVID-19,” she said. “The new stay-at-home order gives us the opportunity to pause all non-essential activities that increase the risk of transmitting the virus so that we can bring the outbreak under control. “

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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