The cities of Huntington Beach and Dana Point, located in Southern California’s Orange County, are taking issue with Governor Gavin Newsom’s order temporarily closing all beaches in the county starting Friday.
According to CNN, both cities voted to file an injunction to stop the governor’s order as they also look to pursue any and all legal action possible in the case to challenge beach closures.
“The City will be seeking a temporary restraining order asking the Court to enjoin his order until a full hearing on the merits of the matter can occur,” Dana Point City Attorney Patrick Munoz told CNN.
Huntington Beach Mayor Lyn Semeta pointed toward Orange County death rates, which she cited as the “lowest per-capita” in California, as she criticized the state for putting “politics over data.”
“Given that Orange County has among the lowest per-capita COVID-19 death rates in California, the action by the state prioritizes politics over data, in direct contradiction of the governor’s stated goal to allow science and facts to guide our response to this horrible global pandemic,” Semeta said in a statement, according to CNN.
The city, which said it “invested considerable effort and expense” in order to ensure social distancing guidelines on beaches, said that locals were complying with measures as the city worked to “provide the community with the ability to safely experience the physical and mental health benefits associated with accessing the Pacific Ocean.”
Newsom had expressed his disappointment earlier this week after photos of overcrowded beaches in Southern California over the past weekend started to circulate.
“Those images are an example of what not to see, what not to do if we’re going to make the meaningful progress we’ve made this past couple of weeks,” Newsom said during a press conference on Monday.
Orange County officials called the photos “misleading,” CNN reports.