Culver City Enforcing Covid-19 Public Health Rules for Businesses to Protect Residents, Workers, and Visitors

 

September 10, 2020

The City of Culver City is continuing its efforts to slow the spread of Covid-19 and protect public health and safety by ensuring local businesses follow all city and LA County public health regulations.

In addition, the city has started publishing a list of local businesses that are not in compliance with required reopening protocols.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Culver City and LA County have issued a variety of public health orders and regulations for businesses with the aim of reducing the spread of coronavirus and preventing illness and death. Although most businesses in the city have been allowed to re-open since the issuance of the Governor's "Safer-at-Home" Order (with few exceptions), those businesses are required to adhere to the re-opening protocol enacted by the County Department of Public Health in order to protect the health, safety, and welfare of those businesses' employees, patrons, and the general public.


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For example, retail establishments are required to implement health screening of employees, ensure employees and patrons wear masks, and maintain social distancing. Other businesses, such as gyms/fitness centers, museums, and hair salons, barbershops, and personal care establishments (e.g., nail salons, tanning salons, and cosmetology) are authorized to operate outdoors only in compliance with mandated social distancing and sanitization requirements (and some of these outdoor operations are subject to the acquisition of a City "Temporary Use Permit").

In a press release, city officials said that personnel from the Culver City Fire Department's Community Risk Reduction team also make frequent in-person visits to local businesses to distribute information on how businesses can keep their customers and employees safe and healthy. The Risk Reduction team also responds to complaints made to the city's coronavirus Hotline about businesses that are not following public health rules.

After educating local operators during their first visit, Community Risk Reduction inspectors will return to the business a second time to ensure that it has followed through on the recommendations. The team will make additional visits if additional complaints are made about the business. However, in nearly all cases, upon receiving the information from the Risk Reduction inspectors, businesses take immediate steps to comply with the public health orders, city officials said.


Recognizing that these are difficult times for everyone, Culver City "goes to great lengths" to ensure that enforcement is educational in nature, officials said. However, in certain circumstances, businesses have refused to comply with public health guidelines, despite multiple attempts to obtain their voluntary compliance.

In these circumstances, the City has had to escalate its enforcement methods, officials said. This includes issuing administrative fines, which start at $100 and escalate to $500 for each daily violation of the public health orders. If a business were to fail to comply after the imposition of administrative fines, the City would pursue misdemeanor charges against the business owner, manager, and other responsible parties, which can result in fines of up to $1,000 and/or 6 months in jail for each day the business violates the public health orders.

In its effort to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the community, the city has also begun publishing a list of local businesses that have refused to comply with health regulations.

This week, the city confirmed that, despite education, warnings and fines, Los Angeles School of Gymnastics, located on Higuera Street, has made it on the list by not adhering to required reopening protocols and conducting indoor activities at it location.


City officials said the list will be updated regularly and businesses will be removed from this list if and when they comply with public health orders.

 

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