MANHATTAN BEACH (CBSLA) — Once the clock strikes 10 p.m. on Sunday, outdoor seating in public areas of the city of Manhattan Beach can no longer be occupied.
The new rule is getting some push back from longtime locals and business owners.
“I think we’re hurting far more people than we’re helping by doing this away,” said Kyle VanAberg, the general manager of Uncle Bill’s.
While officially serving patrons outdoors is banned in L.A. County during safer at home orders, some restaurants had been getting by with customers ordering takeout and then eating outside the restaurant.
Now that option is being taken away, and VanAberg fears the worst is ahead once the tables and chairs are removed.
“Without the ability for people to even sit down and enjoy their food, why would they even bother to come down here?” he said.
Long-time Manhattan Beach resident Hearher Kim is planning to protest the rule by continuing to order take-out with other residents and sit at a bench or nearby wall.
“We should be setting the stage for everybody to follow our footsteps and open up and save our businesses. Their lives matter too. We are all essential. Everybody deserves to work, to eat, to enjoy and not to be stuck in their houses scared to death about dying of COVID,” Kim said.
Since November 1, Manhattan Beach Mayor Pro Tem Hildy Stern says the number of coronavirus cases has doubled in Manhattan Beach.
Stern is urging residents to still support local restaurants by getting delivering orders, along with Manhattan Beach Mayor Suzanne Hadley.
“We must continue to respond to the ever-changing dynamics of this pandemic,” Hadley said in a statement. “Although public seating areas will be closed temporarily, please continue supporting our local businesses that offer pick-up, curbside, take-out, and delivery services.”
It’s unclear for how long the ban on outdoor seating in public areas, which will result in chairs and tables being removed, will remain in place.
The resources listed below can provide information about the pandemic and best practices for staying safe:
- L.A. County residents can call 2-1-1
- Los Angeles County Department of Public Health: http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/
- California Department of Public Health: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/ncov2019.aspx
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019- ncov/index.html Spanish https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index-sp.html
- World Health Organization (WHO): https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus
For information about how to get a free coronavirus test in L.A. County, visit https://corona-virus.la/covid-19-testing.