While other municipalities in Santa Barbara County have pushed back on the state’s stay-at-home order, the city of Santa Barbara will adhere to it and respect the condition that outdoor dining is prohibited.
In a statement to the News-Press, Santa Barbara Mayor Cathy Murillo said the city understands the importance of protecting public health and ensuring capacity in local medical systems.
However, she said, “The city was surprised that Santa Barbara County was included in the Southern California region as part of the newly issued stay-at-home order as the county does not have the same population density in many of the Southern California region’s counties and is principally composed of rural and suburban areas.
“In addition, the Central Coast counties have a long history of coordinating our collective responses to various disasters and sharing public safety and health care resources.”
The mayor said that Santa Barbara is primarily focused on educating businesses and the public.
In its regular meeting next week, the Santa Barbara City Council will also consider formalizing its position on creating a new Central Coast Region with Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Ventura counties and being removed from the Southern California region.
“Speaking for myself as mayor, I don’t agree that Santa Barbara County should be a part of the Southern California region and should be relieved of the regional stay-at-home order at the end of these three weeks,” Mayor Murillo said. “It’s important that the County’s Public Health Officer is engaged in the request and runs all decisions through the lens of what’s best for public health.”
She added that she encourages everyone to wear a mask, maintain social distancing in public spaces, avoid mixing or socializing outside of immediate households, buy local, order takeout meals to safely support local restaurants and buy gift cards from small businesses to help keep them afloat.