Poway Sharing Outdoor Spaces initiative to help businesses during pandemic
POWAY (KUSI) – The Poway City Council recently approved the temporary use of public parks for local fitness groups and worship activities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
After a brief meeting, the council unanimously directed city staff to prepare applications for groups to use open space in the city’s parks free of charge and with minimal paperwork.
Poway Mayor Steve Vaus proposed the Sharing Outdoor Space Initiative after the state of California on Monday issued an order requiring all houses of worship, gyms and other fitness organizations to stop all indoor activities until further notice to lessen the spread of the coronavirus.
The city will require that it be named as an “additional insured” on the organization’s policy and “that all COVID-19 safety guidelines be adhered to, including rules regarding face coverings and social distancing.”
The SOS Initiative is one of several actions the city has taken to help local businesses, including a moratorium on commercial evictions to help those affected by the virus’ effect on the economy.
The council approved spending up to $2 million for loans to small businesses. The city also recently made picnic tables available to restaurants to expand outdoor dining.
“We have folks in Poway who are suffering,” Vaus said during Wednesday’s meeting. “I thought it would be important to step up and helped out wherever we can.”
Vaus said the city is “blessed with acres and acres of park space” for those wanting to stay physically fit. He added the city’s goal is to make the application process “as painless and efficient as possible.”
Vaus joined Good Morning San Diego to discuss how businesses can take advantage of the new program.