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By Supervisor Jim Desmond
5th District 

How do we revive the economy?


Last updated 5/1/2020 at 1:22am

Thank you, San Diego County. The sacrifices you’ve made are extensive, and there has been a willingness for you to do what was necessary to stay inside. We are now at a crossroads when it comes to COVID-19.

We must decide the best course for the entire population. At these crossroads, we see despair and economic devastation from the virus. One of the biggest things we have learned over the past month is how to combat the virus.

Washing your hands for 20 seconds works; social distancing works and wearing masks and gloves work. The trends show it as we continue to have less and less positive cases.

So, how do we keep using these tools and apply them not only to continuing fighting the virus, but also toward reviving the economy and opening businesses?

The narrative for the past month has been, businesses that are essential are allowed to be open and those that aren’t have to close. We need to change the narrative from what is essential to what is safe. What is the safest path to take, applying those same tools that for the most part have staved off the virus and open businesses in San Diego County.

The safety of our county is essential, but so too is the economy. Work is essential; food on the table is essential; mortgages are essential and rents are essential.

Last week, I launched a website,, where we asked businesses to submit their plans for opening back up. We received over 300 plans from businesses that are willing to abide by safety protocols, such as wearing masks, maintaining social distance and taking temperatures.

At our last board meeting, I made a motion for three things. First, open outdoor recreational actives, as soon as possible, including beaches, parks and golf courses, etc. Next, start now to draft the reopening criteria for gyms, salons, restaurants and large warehouse businesses. Last, start lobbying the governor to open businesses in San Diego May 1.

Unfortunately, the motion was defeated by a 3-2 vote with Supervisor Kristin Gaspar supporting the motion.

Safety is greatly important, but businesses can also work in a safe manner on a parallel path. Our next board meeting is May 5, and we will be putting more pressure to get our economy open. Hopefully with your support and more momentum, we will be able to get more people back to work in a safe and effective manner.


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