LA County supervisor calls on Newsom to let retailers reopen with restrictions

L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn says the pandemic has been unfair to small retail businesses because larger retailers such as Target and Walmart can have customers inside.
LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn is calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom to let retailers in the state, specifically small businesses, open their doors to customers with limited capacity, mandatory face coverings and physical distancing.

Hahn sent a letter to Newsom saying she doesn't believe reopening is happening fast enough for small retail businesses.

"What seemed to be a necessary measure at the early onset of this crisis has unintentionally created winners and losers in this 'pandemic economy,' with large retail businesses able to operate, while small retail businesses are struggling and limited to curbside pickup," Hahn said in a statement. "This needs to change."

"Non-essential" retailers are currently allowed to offer curbside pickup, which Hahn writes is unfair because larger retailers such as Target, Costco and Walmart can have customers inside.

Hahn pointed out many small businesses are not set up for online orders and curbside pickups don't always fit well with the plans of small businesses.

Eyewitness News reached out to Newsom's office regarding Hahn's letter but has not heard back.

Coronavirus: More businesses open in Los Angeles as officials move toward 'safe reopening' of county
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Los Angeles is on the road to reopening as more businesses were being allowed to open their doors on Wednesday with modifications in place.

"If these measures are working to keep essential businesses open and safe like Target, Home Depot, and Costco, they can certainly be applied to all retailers," Hahn said in the letter regarding her proposed requirements for retailers to open.

Three cities in northern L.A. County - Lancaster, Palmdale and Santa Clarita - have asked Newsom to move ahead faster, forming a coalition to accelerate reopening. For now, they have to follow the countywide restrictions.

On Thursday, L.A. County announced 46 additional deaths, which brought the total number of deaths past the 2,000 mark to 2,016. The county reported 1,204 new cases, bringing the total number of cases to 42,037. But, County Health Director Barbara Ferrer shared new data about how the number of hospitalizations and deaths is dropping week to week.

"Our current seven-day average, number of deaths per day is 37 and this is a 12% decrease from the prior seven-day average," Ferrer said. "Our current three-day average for hospitalizations per day is 1,532 and this is a 15% decrease from the prior three-day average."
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