San Diego Sends 17 Cease & Desist Orders To Area Businesses As County Ramps Up Enforcement

November 16, 2020

San Diego County officials held an emergency briefing today where it was announced that 17 cease-and-desist letters were sent to businesses around San Diego after compliance teams monitored areas over weekend and observed businesses allegedly operating in violation of the new purple tier restrictions.

"Over the weekend, our enforcement teams went out and investigated a number of complaints that we've received, and today we served 10 cease-and-desist orders to a variety of settings throughout San Diego County that are in willful and blatant violation of public health orders," said San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher at today's media briefing.
Following a record 1,087 cases reported yesterday combined with rising hospitalizations and increased in percentage positive rates, San Diego County officials announced that it would be ramping up oversight to ensure people and area businesses are complying with newly imposed public health orders. Last week, San Diego County was moved into California's dreaded purple tier of COVID-19 restrictions, meaning indoor operations are once again forbidden at restaurants, bars, fitness centers, churches, museums, zoos, aquariums and more until at least December 1. Officials warned further investigations and enforcement actions will take place in the future. 

San Diego County sent cease and desist orders to a church, seven fitness centers, a handful of yoga studios, and four restaurants and bars. Businesses that received letters include Danny's Palm Bar & Grill in CoronadoMeat Monsters Grill in RamonaFit Athletic Club in Little ItalyFit Athletic Club in Mission BeachFit Athletic Club in Solana BeachFit Athletic Club in the East VillageFit Athletic Club in Carmel Mountain RanchReach Yoga in Kearny MesaSelf Made Training Facility in the Midway DistrictShelter Bar in EncinitasShock Fitness in Pacific BeachThe Landing in El CajonYoga Box HillcrestYoga Box North ParkYoga Box Ocean BeachYoga Box Pacific Beach, and Awaken Church in Carlsbad. Letters were also reportedly sent out last week to county mayors asking them to step up enforcement of the new public orders. 

Fit Athletic Club is one of four San Diego plaintiffs that filed a lawsuit in San Diego Superior Court last week against California and San Diego County challenging the constitutionality of the ban on indoor business operations. Other plaintiffs include Cowboy Star Restaurant and Butcher Shop, Home & Away Encinitas, and Bear Republic Crossfit in downtown San Diego. The lawsuit seeks an emergency injunction that could end the required shutdown on indoor operations, alleging that the state and county orders interfere with business's protected area rights and violate the California State Constitution.

San Diego's announcement came mere hours after California Governor Gavin Newsom stated at his daily press briefing that the state has applied an "emergency brake" to its reopening plan. Newsom announced that 28 new California counties have moved into the purple tier, which means 41 out of the state's 58 counties are now in the most restrictive tier.  Newsom also mentioned instituting additional precautions, such as a possible 10pm curfew.