Support for LAist comes from
True LA stories, powered by you
Stay Connected

Share This

News

San Clemente City Council Divided Over Beach Closures

5b2c509d4488b3000927c5df-eight.jpg
sanclemente-beach.jpg
Our reporting is free for everyone, but it’s not free to make.
LAist only exists with reader support. If you're in a position to give, your donation powers our reporters and keeps us independent.

Orange County officials ordered by the state to close their beaches are not happy with the decision, but San Clemente’s city council is divided on how to respond.

All four council members present for a Friday night emergency meeting disagreed with the governor singling out Orange County in his closure order, but not everyone wanted to take up a fight with Sacramento.

Councilmember Gene James had harsh words, calling Newsom a despot.

"I’m sick of looking at the fences at the Pier Bowl," he said. "I’m sick of looking at the fences at North Beach. I’m sick of this shutdown that’s ruining the economy of our city."

Support for LAist comes from

Councilmember Kathleen Ward suggested the council’s time would be better spent on expanding COVID-19 testing and contact tracing.

"That’s what we need to be talking about, not how mad we are about what the governor did, because I think we’re working on the proper channels to get our beaches reopened," she said in response to the outrage from some of her colleagues.

San Clemente has submitted a proposal for active beach use to the state for consideration. Newport Beach voted Saturday to affirm lawsuits against the state’s order. San Clemente has not.

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily coronavirus newsletter. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.