LOS ANGELES – With the daily number of coronavirus cases in the United States still hovering at about 50,000 and American deaths from the disease approaching 160,000, cities across the country are taking increasingly severe measures to force the curve of the outbreak downward — including power shutoffs, fines and more.
In perhaps the most striking example of a city’s coronavirus response, Los Angeles sent police to a large house party in the Beverly Crest neighborhood after complaints from neighbors about the number of people there. FOX 11 Los Angeles sent a news chopper — the kind normally used to document high-speed car chases — to relay video of the party from above. Police cited and impounded some of the cars in the area, but determined there were no noise violations and left. There was later a fatal shooting at the party, which prompted even more scrutiny of the incident.
In response, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced Wednesday that private residences that repeatedly host large gatherings will have their power and water shut off, according to FOX 11 Los Angeles.
“These large house parties have essentially become nightclubs in the hills,” he said. “These large parties are unsafe and can cost Angelenos their lives.”
Outside of private homes, Los Angeles is cracking down hard on businesses potentially in violation of the city’s public health restrictions. A July 23 news release outlined the city’s actions, including shutting down 26 restaurants, a grocery store, a pool and 67 other businesses for health order violations.
“Beginning at the end of August, fines will be issued to businesses that are non-compliant that can range from $100 for the first offense to $500 and a 30 day permit suspension for multiple offenses. This includes businesses licensed and permitted by the department and those that are not,” the city’s public health department said.
Los Angeles itself — despite efforts by one politician, according to the Los Angeles Times — does not have a fine system for individuals not wearing masks yet. But many other jurisdictions in Southern California do, according to FOX 11 Los Angeles. In Beverly Hills, not wearing a mask will cost you $100 for the first offense, $200 for the second and $500 for the third. Calabasas will also fine those who are maskless in public.
In Costa Mesa, Manhattan Beach, and Santa Monica, first offenses for not wearing a mask will cost $100. It’s $300 in West Hollywood, according to FOX 11, and the highest in Glendale: $400 for a first offense, $1,000 for a second and $2,000 for a third.