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Garcetti readies city against coronavirus


Mayor Eric Garcetti has declared a local emergency to strengthen preparation against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), a move to help the city respond more quickly and effectively to cases of the illness.

“The step we’re taking today is about preparation, not panic,” said Garcetti. “There is extraordinary work being done alongside our partners in county and federal government to keep Angelenos safe, aware, and informed. This declaration is about making sure we are positioned to respond to any changes in the situation, and are doing everything we can to protect our communities.”

In signing the local declaration, Garcetti formalized coordination with public health agencies, smoothed the way for quicker acquisition of supplies, and eased access to state and federal funds should they become necessary in the response to COVID-19.

All City departments have been ordered to update Continuity of Operations plans that ensure delivery of vital services in the case of an emergency.

“Solid planning is the best response, and the Mayor’s declaration clears the way for the resources, coordination, and authority needed to approach a potential health emergency with strength and confidence,” said Aram Sahakian, general manager of the city of Los Angeles Emergency Management Department. “We will continue working closely with our partners to help protect vulnerable populations, ensure stability in city operations, and keep the public informed.”

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