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Local officials make statements in opposition of Governor’s beach closure orders 

Jordan Cunningham

Jordan Cunningham.

–On Thursday, Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo) released the following statement in response to media reports that claimed that Governor Gavin Newsom would be closing all beaches statewide:

“This is absolutely the wrong decision. There is no science and no data that backs this decision up or explains its rationale. According to our local public health officials, beaches on the Central Coast have been properly managed and folks are maintaining their social distancing. The decision may not even be constitutional, as Article X, Section 4 of the California State Constitution guarantees the public’s right to access to coastline.

“Public health officials agree that outdoor recreation is necessary and good – especially in times of stress and crisis. We need opportunities to recreate. Don’t punish the entire state because beaches in Southern California may have been too crowded – a report Southern California officials even dispute.”

Newsom clarified Thursday that only beaches in the Orange County area will close. Watch the Governor’s latest press conference here.

After the clarification by the Governor, Cunningham released the following follow-up statement:

“Great to hear that the Governor is not closing beaches statewide. There was no science and no data to back-up a statewide closure. Coastal communities and residents from #ad35 made their voices heard.”

San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson

San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson also released a statement regarding the potential closures, both stating his opposition and stating that he would not demand enforcement of such orders:

“I was made aware that the Governor intended to close all beaches in California. He has announced closing only Orange County beaches.

I am not in favor of our beaches being closed and do not plan to make criminals out of people that need to walk, run, or enjoy the beach for their mental health. These are hard times and we need to self-police ourselves and follow safety practices like social distancing and other methods.

We have released thousands from jail and prisons, against law enforcement recommendations. We are faced with protecting our citizens from criminals and will continue to do that.”

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