Encinitas city meetings go virtual again after COVID-19 outbreak


Encinitas City Hall. (NCC file photo)

North Coast Current

The Encinitas City Council and other panels are returning to virtual meetings until further notice after an outbreak of COVID-19 infections at City Hall.

The City Council unanimously approved the change on Wednesday, May 18, based on a recommendation from the city manager. Wednesday’s meeting business was pushed back to May 25 after public comments.

Medical. (Photo by Hush Naidoo, Unsplash)“The City Council did resolve that all future meetings for the time being will be held by Zoom only,” City Attorney Tarquin Preziosi said at the start of Wednesday’s meeting. “In light of that, the City Council will move this evening, after public comment for items not on the agenda, to continue all items on tonight’s agenda to Wednesday, May 25, at the next regular meeting. And that regular meeting will be held by Zoom.”

Multiple employees across city departments tested positive for COVID-19 in the past week, which defined an outbreak under Cal/OSHA regulations, according to a city announcement.

“This is a disappointing development, but the well-being of our City Council and Commission members, employees and residents is of the utmost importance,” City Manager Pamela Antil said in the announcement. “While all employees at City Hall, Public Works, Marine Safety, and Parks and Recreation facilities are vaccinated, the virus continues to spread and breakthrough cases of COVID are occurring. I am hopeful that by taking this step now, we will be able to avoid a major breakthrough as defined by Cal/OSHA and a safe return to in-person meetings.”

The action comes as San Diego County sees an uptick in COVID-19 infections, according to a May 19 Weekly Surveillance Report from the county’s Health and Human Services Agency. There were 5,707 confirmed and probable cases reported for the week of May 8-14, while the previous week’s cases numbered 4,545. It’s the highest case number since February and appears to be part of a broader trend.

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