California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced today a temporary pause on state and local beaches in Orange County.
He said the beaches may open very quickly if the framework and guidelines allow.
Newsom has consistently reiterated his disappointment and frustration with beachgoers, chiding them for crowding the coast. He noted that only about 5% of beaches in the state actually presented an issue with crowding.
The city council in Newport Beach, California, snubbed the governor’s reproach and voted Tuesday to step up enforcement of physical distancing and keep beaches open.
While the governor is cracking down on beaches, access is being granted for other outdoor spaces. The amended stay-home order loosens up restrictions on hiking, golfing, tennis and other outdoor activities.
“The only thing we don’t want you to do is linger, in ways where you’re mixing,” Newsom said.
Newsom addressed a law enforcement memo disseminated widely last night that indicated all California beaches would be closed. He said the memo never got to him.
The governor went on to say that he just wants "to focus on where there’s a problem.. in a smart, strategic way."
“We don’t want to be heavy-handed about these things,” he said.