Los Angeles City Hall reopens to the public after 2 years due to COVID-19 pandemic

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Los Angeles City Hall in downtown L.A. reopened to the public on Wednesday for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

City Hall has been closed since 2020 due to the pandemic, and the city council also resumed public in-person meetings.

The public will be allowed to attend, but masks and proof of vaccination, or a negative COVID-19 test will be required.

Adam Smith of West L.A. was the first to speak at the meeting Wednesday, and told council members that it's "good to be back in the room." But he added:

"I do think it's really troubling that, accessibility-wise, people can't call in and give public comment anymore...Accessibility has always been an issue at these meetings, and folks that are disparately impacted by the policies coming out of this room have trouble coming in to give public comment on a weekday morning."

The City Council had virtual meetings via teleconference for the first year of the pandemic, with in-person meetings continuing for council members in June 2021 before briefly returning to a remote format in January due to the omicron variant's rapid spread.

Wednesday's meeting had a relatively brief agenda. Council members repealed three COVID-19-related laws that gave exclusive shopping hours for senior citizens and people with disabilities at grocery stores; allowed occupants of self-service storage facilities to defer payment due to loss of income related to the pandemic; and made it unlawful to litter personal protective equipment.

Copyright 2022, City News Service, Inc. contributed to this report

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