Pasadena, a holdout in LA County, to consider banning all outdoor dining as COVID cases surge

KABC logo
Monday, November 30, 2020
Pasadena suspends permits to 4 restaurants for violating COVID protocols
Four Pasadena restaurants had their health permits suspended because they allegedly ignored warnings to adhere to the city's COVID-19 safety protocols.

PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- People from across Southern California came to Old Town Pasadena on Sunday for outdoor dining -- the only city in Los Angeles County that was still allowing that service.

"We came to Pasadena because I read on Google that they have their own health department, so that's why we decided to try it out," said visitor Ana Valladares. "It was open today."

But that could change as the city continues to monitor its coronavirus numbers, especially after the holiday weekend starts to factor in.

"It's literally a day-by-day assessment to see how we're going to move forward," Lisa Derderian, a spokeswoman for the city, told ABC7.

Crowd gathers outside LA County public health director's home to protest COVID restrictions

A small group of people gathered on Sunday to protest Los Angeles County's new coronavirus restrictions outside the home of the county's public health director Barbara Ferrer.

Pasadena's health department is already cracking down on restaurants not in compliance. Last week, inspectors went to over 60 establishments and found about half had minor violations. After revisiting Friday night, at least five were still non-compliant and were shut down.

"They went through a hearing, a re-inspection and three out of those five were able to reopen last night," Derderian said. "I say that, but I also say that during additional inspections Saturday night, 2 more restaurants were closed down, so we're at four right now that are still closed down."

ABC7 spoke to people who said they hope the few don't ruin it for everyone.

"It's tough for the other businesses that are involved that have to suffer because of some restaurants that aren't abiding by those rules," said a man who gave his name only as Sam.

The city's health department also has an eye on gatherings. On Saturday, inspectors went to all of the city's 24 parks including the Rose Bowl Loop to help remind people of the guidelines.

"People that weren't wearing masks," Derderian said. "We reminded them that it is not a matter of it's recommended or please do it -- it's mandated. Wear a mask."

On Monday, Pasadena will be the only city in Los Angeles County with playgrounds open. Residents said they hoped they would continue to at least have that option for an outdoor escape.

"You can't trap us in our houses," said Marian Jocz, who lives in the San Fernando Valley. "We need exercise and fresh air."

Meanwhile, there are others who think more restrictions might be necessary.

"We don't want a photocopy of 2020 in 2021," said Pasadena resident Derek Wells. "So we better start taking the measures now."