Long Beach issues more rules: No funerals; recreation venues close

After closing all public beaches and bike paths, officials further clarified on Saturday what people can and can’t do under the city’s stay-at-home order intended to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Beach and public facility closures are extended to May 1, while closures and limitations to businesses are in effect until April 19, or until further notice.

Among the biggest things to go is funerals: Death services are limited to the removal, care, preparation and burial of dead people or animals, according to the amended order.

Curbside pickup at dispensaries

The city is also now allowing licensed medical cannabis dispensaries to temporarily do curbside pickup as long as: payment is made in advance, patients submit valid government ID and their medical card before the pickup, the dispensary verifies the ID of the patient, products are delivered in opaque packaging, uniformed and licensed security officers are present and all other local and state laws are followed.

Essential businesses

The amended order also mandates that essential businesses must make every effort to ensure social distancing for employees, which includes allowing telecommuting, staggering schedules and separating employees by 6 feet. It also includes limiting meetings and eliminating employees traveling in vehicles together or limiting the need for employees to work in person in teams of two or more.

Beach closures

All public beaches, trails, sports courts, golf courses, dog parks, playgrounds, skate parks, public park and public beach parking lots and picnic areas are now closed. It also appears city workers have filled some skate parks in with mulch to prevent people from using them. In others, the city has erected a fence.

“Open park space and park pathways may still be utilized by individuals for personal health and wellness purposes, if appropriate social distancing measures are taken,” the order said.

Bixby Park is fenced off to prevent people from using it. Long Beach officials have closed all skate parks and recreation areas in an effort to slow the spread of novel coronavirus. Photo by Steven Smith.

Non-essential businesses

In addition, private gyms in condos and apartment complexes must now close. And businesses that exclusively sell personal care products, like beauty supply stores, must also close.

If non-essential businesses are found to be operating, the city may issue citations, and the water department may shut off water service.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect that beach and facility closures are effective through May 1, while limitations to businesses are in effect through April 19, or further notice.

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Valerie Osier is a breaking news and crime reporter for the Long Beach Post. She’s a Riverside native who found her love for journalism while at community college. She graduated from the Cal State Long Beach journalism program in 2017 and covered the Palos Verdes Peninsula for the Daily Breeze prior to coming to the Post. She lives in Long Beach with her husband and two cats.
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