Eight California mayors have signed a letter to Governor Newsom asking him to modify guidelines for theme park reopening in California. Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, Fresno Mayor Lee Brand, Bakersfield Mayor Karen Goh, Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey and Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido came together for this letter that was dated October 30th. In it, the mayors state that they “are concerned that the state’s guidelines would push reopening of large theme parks up to a year out, which would have significant negative impacts on hundreds of thousands of jobs, thousands of small businesses, and billions in operating revenue for our cities.”
CA Mayors agree: we can fight the pandemic and responsibly reopen California's major theme parks at the same time. Let’s get people back to work and revive local economies! #ReadytoReopenResponsibly pic.twitter.com/YPmHBIXk9X
— CA Attractions & Parks Assoc. (@CaAttractions) November 2, 2020
“The guidelines put forth by your Administration were released within the framework of prioritizing public health and safety for guests and employees,” the mayors said in the letter. “This is the right focus. However, economic and public health are not mutually exclusive goals. We are concerned that the state’s guidelines would push re-opening of large theme parks up to a year out, which would have significant negative impacts on hundreds of thousands of jobs, thousands of small businesses, and billions in operating revenue for our cities.”
“As you may have recently seen, labor unions and employee groups representing many of the workers at these theme parks have joined in calls for a timely, safe reopening,” states the letter. “This call is a result of their direct knowledge of the health and safety protocols, and their need to get back to work. We therefore respectfully request that your Administration work with our most impacted coalition members — Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Diego — to continue the discussion of how we can maintain a health-first focus while modifying protocols to allow large theme parks to open in Tier Three with reduced capacity, rather than Tier Four.”
This letter is the recent development in the back and forth that has gone between Governor Newsom and those who would like to see theme parks reopen. Theme parks closed down in California in March due to COVID-19. The governor has stated that he wants a science-based approach to reopening theme parks that keep people safe. Theme Parks, including Disney, argue that they have successfully reopened theme parks around the world without any outbreaks. Disney has been very upfront about their successes in safely reopening theme parks globally and domestically in Florida on this matter. They have touted their record and also health and safety protocols. This has not changed the governor’s mind to date.