Garcetti Says Some, But Not All, Parks and Playgrounds Reopen amid COVID-19


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LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Some playgrounds and parks are being allowed to reopen in Los Angeles for the first time in months after being closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but they first must be cleaned and inspected, Mayor Eric Garcetti said.

Garcetti said Friday the city has been seeing fewer positive COVID-19 test results recently, and Los Angeles has significantly reduced the gap among certain ethnicities that have disproportionately contracted the virus.

“Since the pandemic began, we closed our parks and playgrounds based on the public health advice, but this week, we began the process again with the concurrence of the state and our county public health department of reopening our playgrounds and city parks,” Garcetti said.

“They're not all open yet, some are ... We need to clean them.”

Garcetti also said Los Angeles will extend for another 90 days its ban on third-party food delivery apps charging more than 15% of the total cost of an order to restaurants they serve. Garcetti said the limit helps the restaurants stay in business.

“I ... want to remind folks, please order out. Those restaurants are still hanging on. They've been so hard hit by this pandemic,” he said.

Garcetti also said he was encouraged by reports that federal COVID-19 stimulus funding negotiations have resumed, and said he has spoken with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi regarding those issues.

Los Angeles is set to receive its first 20,000 paper-strip, at-home COVID-19 test kits from the Department of Health and Human Services, The Rockefeller Foundation and University of Southern California this month, and Garcetti said he hopes to start administering them to first responders and essential workers by the end of October.

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