I hope that you and your families are doing well and keeping your optimism. I know that’s difficult, but it’s important to maintain a good state of mind in the midst of everything we’re facing – yes, we are still under shelter-in-place regulations, but our fight against COVID-19 seems to be moving in the right direction.
Last week, I noted our shared frustration with the behavior (and sheer number) of visitors to Half Moon Bay’s beaches on Memorial Day Weekend. As we announced, we were able to work with the State and State Parks to reopen the beach parking lots and restrooms. Although there were still many – perhaps too many – visitors this weekend, from what I have heard this move was effective in somewhat relieving the parking pressure on neighborhoods adjacent to our beaches. The other problems experienced over Memorial Day weekend were also reduced. I know that it is not a perfect solution, but it is a good step toward normalcy. As you may notice, we’ve placed signs at our beaches and along the Coastal Trail encouraging social distancing and other measures. I understand that many of you are upset we were not able to coordinate this prior to the holiday weekend – I want you to know that we did try. Opening of the parking lots and restrooms took coordination of eight separate agencies, and because of that, took a few days longer than we had hoped.
As things continue to change, we continue to adjust accordingly. I participate in calls twice a week with all elected officials in San Mateo County. We discuss many COVID-related issues, and I continually advocate for Coastside jurisdictions to get additional resources for law enforcement and waste management services.
I do have a message I want to share before we get into additional updates.
Stand Up to Racism and Intolerance:
This is not about COVID-19, but there are some painful, disturbing social issues going on that we must recognize and address.
I want our community to know that Half Moon Bay is a welcoming, tolerant, and safe place for all people – no matter their color, religion, national origin, socio-economic standing, gender, sexual orientation, or immigration status.
Let me remind you that I am a great supporter of our local law enforcement. But we must recognize that instances of excessive use of force, as we recently saw in Minneapolis, are a symptom of something very wrong in our society, no matter where they occur. We should not and cannot ignore these signs – we do so at great risk to the wellbeing of all our communities, and all the people who live there.
There is zero tolerance in Half Moon Bay for prejudice, racism, bigotry, hatred, bullying, and violence – and that means by community members, by businesses, or by those under color of authority. Our City leaders and all who live and work here must maintain a commitment to treating everyone with respect, and not allow hateful acts to exist in our community – and to denounce them wherever they occur. Only through that kind of attitudinal change, on the most widespread levels, can we begin to address the problems with racism and other discriminations.
I am calling on the members of our community to continue Half Moon Bay’s long tradition of acceptance and respect for all people. Together, let’s commit to some solid action:
- Actively denounce any attempt to intimidate, threaten, or otherwise marginalize members of our community – speak up
- Speak and act with respect for all persons
- Talk about our society’s problems concerning racism, intolerance, and discrimination
- Be aware of your own microaggressions and inequities in your everyday interactions – and commit to changing that behavior
I ask you to think of the world we are leaving to our children and the generations beyond – we want that world to be one where all people are empowered to be confident and effective citizens and contributors to our society. That dream is at great risk today, and it is up to each of us to work toward positive change.
County vs State Orders – Where Do We Stand?
Just a day after we got the OK to the reopen the lots and bathrooms for the weekend, the San Mateo County Health Officer issued a revised Public Health Order (May 29, 2020) which reduced regulations on access to certain beaches and allowed certain additional businesses/activities to resume operations, subject to guidelines. We sent out a special eNews last Friday with that information. In case you missed it (and if you did, you should subscribe to Half Moon Bay eNews by visiting hmbcity.com/newsletters!), you can read that special eNews here, and I also encourage you to visit the San Mateo County shelter-in-place FAQ web page for all the details.
County of San Mateo Curfew:
A curfew is in effect for San Mateo County tonight and tomorrow night from 8:30 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. Please see the County’s news release for more information.
Half Moon Bay COVID-19 Verily Testing Site:
Starting Wednesday, COVID-19 testing will be available at Cunha Intermediate School on Wednesdays and Thursdays for the next two weeks from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. This Wednesday, testing will run from 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., moving to 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Thursday. Residents can sign up 72 hours before the testing site opens by visiting the Verily site www.projectbaseline.com. Those who’d like to get tested must register in advance and must be 18 years or older.
Board of Supervisors Extends Eviction Moratorium:
On May 26, the Board of Supervisors extended the temporary moratoriums on evictions for non-payment of rent by those directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic for residential tenants countywide (and for small business commercial tenants in unincorporated San Mateo County) through June 30. See the residential eviction moratorium resolution here and the commercial eviction ordinance here.
I wanted to express my sadness over the cancelation of these events. I know how important they are to the community, and their absence this year will be felt. I personally am sad as my children enjoy both of these events, and I love the way they bring our community together. That is hard to give up. They are also both huge fundraisers for our local non-profits, so we share the concern for that aspect, and I am hopeful we can come up with some ways for them to recoup those funds. Here’s my quote from the news release announcing the cancelation:
“The cancellation of these much-loved community events is sad and unfortunate for the city, our residents and businesses, and the many visitors who eagerly look forward to these festivities each year,” said Half Moon Bay Mayor Adam Eisen. “But I’m confident in our community’s ability to endure these difficult circumstances, and of the return of the Pumpkin Festival and 4th of July events in the future.”
June 2, 2020 City Council meeting:
Tonight’s City Council meeting will begin at 6:00 p.m. with many of our regular meeting items, followed by our regular meeting at 7:00 p.m. We have a lot of important items on the agenda including sewer rates, the budget, community grants, and the Council’s priorities. As “usual” special remote protocols will be in place:
· Watch the meeting on Channel 27
Participants via Zoom can make live comments during the public comment portion of each agenda item. If you wish to comment on an item without participating via Zoom, please email your comment to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to the meeting, or prior to the close of the public comment period for that item. Comments received will be read aloud at the meeting. Please note that public comments will be limited to three minutes.
As always, feel free to email me with any comments or concerns. And be sure to stay informed by visiting the City’s COVID-19 Daily Updates webpage, and our Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Nextdoor feeds.
Together in partnership,