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Garcetti: Recovery Is 'Debatable,' Next 2 Weeks Are Critical

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On the same day the county announced its most new coronavirus cases in a single day, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti urged residents to redouble their efforts to get the region's recovery back on track.

The city, county and state have been gradually relaxing stay-at-home restrictions to relieve some of the pressure on the local economy, even while the number of new cases has continued to rise.

In justifying the reopening of business and recreation, the mayor and public health officials have cited a steady decrease in daily deaths and hospitalization rates, balancing those numbers against the need to resuscitate an economy that has seen unemployment numbers above Great Depression levels, as the mayor noted.

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But today, Garcetti warned that the pandemic was beginning to gain the upper hand again. He pointed to a 27% increase in daily hospitalizations, and he reiterated what the county's public health director, Barbara Ferrer, had reported earlier in the day: that one in every 140 people in L.A. County are now estimated to be infectious with COVID-19:

"Whether we continue on this recovery journey is debatable. COVID-19 is taking control, and we need to take control back."

Garcetti called on everyone to stay at home and adhere to social distancing guidelines with renewed diligence for the next two weeks. He urged residents to reclaim a mindset that he said was more common in the beginning of the pandemic, when officials urged residents to behave as though everyone were sick. He said residents have begun to do the opposite, ignoring distancing rules at work and at play, and generally acting as though no one is ill.

To help prepare for the Independence Day weekend and discourage gatherings, the county announced today that beaches, piers, and beach bike paths will be closed from July 3-6, and fireworks displays have been prohibited, Garcetti said.

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