LA Mayor gives orders to shut down utilities at non-compliant house parties.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has authorized the city to suspend utility services at a Hollywood Hills mansion after large parties continued to be held there, which he said were "an obvious violation of COVID-19 regulations for public health ". Garcetti first issued a public warning that anyone holding "improper large gatherings" could turn off their water and electricity services.
"With more than 2,000 Angelenos and over 170,000 Americans losing to COVID-19, every resident must take critical safety precautions to stop the virus from spreading," he said. "This includes that no parties are organized or attended that endanger themselves, their neighbors and many others."
According to the mayor's office, the Hollywood Hills home was hosting a party on August 8, three days after the warning was issued. According to the order, Los Angeles Police Department officers responding to such events can request a shutdown of the utility within 48 hours. The department reportedly visited the residence, issued warnings, and warned that future violations could result in a referral to Garcetti's office "to review and issue a utility shutdown policy". Garcetti confirmed: "Despite several warnings, this house has been turned into a nightclub in the hills."
Photo by Jacob Bentzinger on Unsplash
The city began crackdown on party houses in August after being brought to the attention of several large gatherings and a 200-person party at a mansion on Mulholland Drive resulted in deadly shootings. The police issued quotes for "noisy gatherings" in thirteen houses in one weekend alone.
Garcetti said that while all nightclubs and bars were already closed, "these big house parties have essentially become nightclubs," which often happens in homes that are vacant or used for short-term rentals. The consequences of these big parties go well beyond these parties. They spread across our entire community as the virus can spread quickly and easily. "
The policy received some setbacks from the LAPD when the union submitted a letter expressing its concerns.
“Mayor Garcetti wants to redefine police work. He should send his civilian personnel to turn off the people's electricity and turn off their water, ”wrote the league. "Let the officials deal with the increase in shootings and murders in LA. We need a leader, not a political contortionist."
Jerretta Sandoz, union vice president, said: “Police officers should not be involved in taking down utilities. He wants to use police officers when it is politically beneficial. If we are trying to bridge the gap between community and police relationships, why should we go to such a call that would create more friction? "
However, Garcetti relies on law enforcement for help in his initiative. "It will specifically focus on party members who are determined to break the rules" and "pose a threat to public health". So far, the officials have followed the procedures introduced and supported the shutdown procedures.
The Mayor of Los Angeles turns off the power supply at Hollywood Hills House, which was hosting large parties
Police Union with Garcetti: Don't drag cops into your plan for the party house
In party houses that defy COVID-19 orders, utilities could be shut down, the mayor says