Local restaurant owners face barriers due to guidelines set by Governor Newsom
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – When the Governor announced that restaurants in California could start reopening, there was a lot of excitement in the air. Then someone took a closer look and realized there was little to be excited about.
“On Tuesday we were all excited about the Governor’s plan to reopen California restaurants. Then he set the standard so high we couldn’t believe it. No deaths from Coronavirus for 14 days straight before we can open. Even the San Diego Health Officer Wilma Wooten says that will not happen for years to come. This is an impossible standard,” Angie Weber, owner of the Cowboy Star Restaurant and Butcher Shop in Downtown San Diego, said.
If any industry is prepared to meet tough new health standards, it’s the restaurant business. They already exist under Health Department regulations on a day to day basis, always have.
“We have a plan. We worked on this plan with the San Diego County Health Diego and presented it to the Governor and he signed off on it. Then, two days later when he makes the announcement, he changed everything. It will be virtually impossible to open under those standards,” Larry Baumann, owner of the Bali Hai on Shelter Island and Tom Ham’s Lighthouse across the Bay on Harbor Island, said.
At this stage the Restaurant Industry is joining forces and hoping to have an impact on policy and fast. The California Restaurant Association has 22-thousand restaurant members and there are 80-thousand restaurants in California. It’s the largest private industry in the state.
“The Governor has threatened to punish us if we open. He’s threatened to take away liquor licences, impose massive fines, Well, if he waits much longer to open restaurants, it won’t matter if you have a liquor license. You’ll be out of business and declaring bankruptcy,” Weber said.