ORDER OF THE HEALTH OFFICER
OF THE COUNTY OF MARIN ALLOWING MOTORIZED ACCESS TO CERTAIN
PARKS, AND OPEN SPACES, AND DIRECTING THAT
OTHERS REMAIN CLOSED TO MOTORIZED ACCESS
DATE OF ORDER: May 15,2020
Please read this Order carefully. Violation of or failure to comply with this Order is a misdemeanor punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both. (California Health and Safety Code § 120295, et seq.; Cal. Penal Code §§ 69, 148(a)(1), et seq.)
UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF CALIFORNIA HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE SECTIONS 101040, 101085, AND 120175, THE HEALTH OFFICER OF THE COUNTY OF MARIN (“HEALTH OFFICER”) ORDERS:
- This Order supersedes the April 29, 2020 Order (“Prior Order”) of the Health Officer Directing All Parks, Campgrounds, and Open Spaces to Continue Closing to Motorized Access. This Order lifts the Prior Order’s restrictions related to motorized access of many – but not all – outdoor recreation areas within Marin County (“the County”), now leaving it to local jurisdictions to allow, limit or prohibit motorized access to those areas as appropriate. This Order also extends the terms of the Prior Order to certain high-traffic, destination outdoor recreation areas, continuing the existing prohibitions against motorized access to the same in order to slow the transmission of Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19”).
- When people need to leave their places of residence, they should remain as close to the same as practicable and at all times comply with Social Distancing Requirements as defined in the May 15 Order of the Health Officer of the County of Marin Directing All Individuals Living in the County to Continue Sheltering at Their Place of Residence (the “Shelter in Place Order”) or any subsequently issued order of the Health Officer. All provisions of this Order should be interpreted to effectuate this intent. Failure to comply with any of the provisions of this Order constitutes an imminent threat and menace to public health, constitutes a public nuisance, and is punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both.
- Unless specified otherwise in the following section, all agencies and jurisdictions operating public outdoor recreation areas, including but not limited to parks and open spaces (hereinafter, “Park Facilities”), within the County are hereby authorized to reopen all operations and services related to facilitating the public’s motorized access to all Park Facilities located within the County. This means that people will now be able to drive to and park at or near many of the Park Facilities within the County for the purpose of engaging in Essential Activities as defined in the Shelter in Place Order, including outdoor exercise. However, local jurisdictions and authorities are authorized and encouraged to continue prohibiting as much motorized access to any Park Facility, even those otherwise entitled to reopen under this Order, as necessary to prevent crowds that cannot feasibly comply with the Social Distancing and other requirements of this and other Health Officer orders. All Park Facilities reopening to motorized access must be actively monitored and managed by the appropriate authority. Such management includes continuing to close by signage and/or physical barriers all portions of Park Facilities with high-touch equipment or that encourage gathering, including, but not limited to, playgrounds, gym equipment, climbing walls, benches, picnic areas, dog parks, pools, and barbecue areas.
- Due to their high-traffic nature and the fact that they draw regional crowds from across the greater Bay Area, creating conditions where individuals cannot feasibly comply with Social Distancing Requirements, the following Park Facilities are not authorized to reopen to motorized access at this time: Point Reyes National Seashore, Golden Gate National Recreation Area (including Muir Woods National Monument), Mount Tamalpais State Park, Tomales Bay State Park, Samuel P Taylor State Park, Chicken Ranch Beach, Miller Park, White House Pool Park, Bolinas Lagoon Open Space Preserve, Bolinas Park, all Marin Municipal Water District lands, and all beaches along the Pacific Ocean or inlets of the Pacific Ocean (not including the San Francisco Bay). However, individuals may continue to responsibly access these Park Facilities if they are local to their residences and readily accessible by foot, bicycle or other non-motorized means for the purpose of engaging in Essential Activities as defined in the Shelter in Place Order, including outdoor exercise. Such access of Park Facilities shall continue to be exclusively by non-motorized means, except that disabled individuals with vehicles possessing current and valid Disabled Person (DP) Parking Placards or DP License Plates may continue to access the above-listed Park Facilities by motorized means but only to the minimum extent necessary to engage in Essential Activities, Any motorized vehicle driving to or parking around a Park Facility named in this section for the purpose of accessing that Park Facility is in violation of this Order unless it is displaying a DP Parking Placard or DP License Plate. Violation of any of the provisions of this Order constitutes an imminent threat and menace to public health, constitutes a public nuisance, and is punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both.
- This Order is based on evidence of reduced transmission of COVID-19 within the County and the assessment of the Health Officer that the County has achieved certain benchmarks necessary to begin allowing a moderate increase in access to Park Facilities, especially given the lower likelihood of COVID-19 transmission when outside and the ability of individuals to adequately comply with comply all Social Distancing Requirements when using Park Facilities.
- This Order comes after the release of substantial guidance from the County Health Officer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the California Department of Public Health, and other public health officials throughout the United States and around the world, including a variety of prior orders to combat the spread and harms of COVID-19. The Health Officer will continue to assess the quickly evolving situation and may modify or extend this Order, or issue additional Orders, related to COVID-19.
- Pursuant to Government Code sections 26602 and 41601 and Health and Safety Code section 101029, the Health Officer requests that the Sheriff and all chiefs of police in the County ensure compliance with and enforce this Order. The violation of any provision of this Order constitutes an imminent threat to public health.
- This Order shall become effective at 11:59 p.m. on May 17, 2020 and will continue to be in effect until 11:59 p.m. on May 31, 2020, or until it is extended, rescinded, superseded, or amended in writing by the Health Officer.
- Copies of this Order shall promptly be: (1) transmitted to every agency operating a park or open space within the County, including but not limited to the National Park Service, California State Park, and Marin Municipal Water District; (2) made available at the Bulletin Board adjacent to the entrance to the Chambers of the Board of Supervisors, Room 330, Administration Building, and in the display case in the center arch of the Hall of Justice, Marin County Civic Center, San Rafael, California; (3) posted on the County of Marin website (www.marincounty.org) as well as the County of Marin Department of Health and Human Services website (www.marinhhs.org); and (4) provided to any member of the public requesting a copy of this Order.
- If any provision of this Order or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held to be invalid, the reminder of the Order, including the application of such part or provision to other persons or circumstances, shall not be affected and shall continue in full force and effect. To this end, the provisions of this Order are severable.
IT IS SO ORDERED:
Matt Willis, MD, MPH Dated: May 15, 2020
Health Officer of the County of Marin