Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Face Masks Required in Santa Monica Businesses, Hallways, Elevators and Parking Lots

Clarifies that even at a protest or in a private car with other people, you must wear a face mask.

Santa Monica City Hall issued a new order again requiring that businesses and their customers wear face masks. It is the 20th Covid-19 related order; the City has gone back and forth on masks. This order says that if you and the guy helping you at a local business aren't wearing a mask, you could be fined $100 for the first offense.

More interestingly, when you simply pass by another person (within 30 feet of another person, in fact); you must wear a mask. Masks are required when you walk into an elevator or parking structure in Santa Monica. Unless you’re under 2 years of age, or have a mental disability.

There is an exception to the mask rule for people “participating in an in person protest.” Because when you are protesting, you are immune from Covid-19. Right?

The press release from Santa Monica City Hall follows below.

Interim City Manager and Director of Emergency Services Lane Dilg has issued a Twentieth Supplement to Santa Monica's local emergency declaration strengthening and clarifying requirements for wearing face coverings and setting penalties for those who do not wear them when required. Face coverings are critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

"As public health experts have shared widely this week, we are in a dangerous period with dramatic increases in cases and hospitalizations," said Interim City Manager Lane Dilg. "Face coverings are essential. I encourage everyone to try different styles to find what works for you. But it is a critical time to save lives by wearing face coverings whenever we are outside of our homes and not gathering with people outside of our households."

Under the Twentieth Supplement, businesses can refuse service to any person who does not wear a face covering or fails to comply with social distancing. Businesses must also take all reasonable steps to ensure those in line or entering their business wear face coverings and comply with physical distancing requirements. The supplement authorizes administrative citations for failing to wear face coverings, for individuals, as $100 for a first violation, $250 for a second violation, and $500 for a third violation. For businesses, the administrative citations are $500 for a first violation, $750 for a second violation, and $1,000 for a third violation.

The supplement clarifies that the face covering requirement applies:

When individuals are or can be in contact with or walking near or past others who are non-household members in both public and private spaces, including, but not limited to, walking through common areas such as hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking facilities, meaning that a face covering must be visible and ready to be immediately put on whenever a moving person approaches within 30 feet of a non-household member;

When patronizing a business, including while standing in line to enter any business;

When obtaining services from healthcare operations, unless otherwise directed by the healthcare provider;

When obtaining services from and while inside or at any location or facility engaging in essential government functions;

When waiting for or riding on public transportation or paratransit or while in a taxi, private car service, or ride-sharing vehicle;

When driving or operating any public transportation or paratransit vehicle, taxi, or private car service or ride-sharing vehicle when passengers are present;

When participating in an in-person protest; and

When engaged in work, either at a business or off-site (other than at one's own residence) and (i) interacting in-person with any member of the public; (ii) working in any space visited by members of the public, regardless of whether anyone from the public is present at the time; (iii) working in any space where food is prepared or packaged for sale or distribution to others; (iv) working in or walking through common areas, such as hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking facilities; or (v) in any room or enclosed area where people who are non-household members are present and unable to maintain a minimum six-foot separation from one another.

Exemptions from the face covering requirement apply to the following:

Persons younger than two years old;

Persons with a medical condition, mental health condition, or disability that prevents wearing a face covering;

Persons who are hearing impaired, or communicating with a person who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication;

Persons for whom wearing a face covering would create a risk to the person related to their work, as determined by local, state, or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines;

Persons who are obtaining a service involving the nose or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service;

Persons who are (i) outdoors alone or with household members; (ii) stationary; and (iii) maintaining at least six feet between the edge of the area they are in and the edge of the next closest person's area;

Persons who are actively engaged in a water-based activity, including, but not limited to, swimming and surfing.

Persons compliant with the County Department of Health's Protocol for Restaurants Opening for On-Site Dining under which customers who are seated at a restaurant or other establishment that offers food or beverage service are not required to wear face coverings while they are eating or drinking;

Persons wearing personal protective equipment ("PPE"), such as medical-grade N95 respirator or a similar mask that is more protective than a face covering;

Persons compliant with any other reopening protocol issued by the County Department of Health authorizing persons to remove their face coverings.

Santa Monica's order is in effect until July 31, 2020.

To keep the community informed of the importance of face coverings, residents and businesses can pick up free lawn signs and retail signage to help inform friends, neighbors and customers. Free signs are available for pick up at the Downtown Santa Monica Farmer's Market Info Booth (Saturdays and Wednesdays, 8 a.m.-1p.m.) or the Main Street Visitor Information Center located at 2427 Main Street (Wednesday – Sunday, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.).

Governor Gavin Newsom yesterday announced the closure of indoor dining and indoor entertainment, including museums, aquariums, wine tasting rooms, and more across Los Angeles County and other counties highly impacted by COVID-19. For the latest information on this, visit

For the latest information, please visit, or call the City's Coronavirus Hotline at (310) 458-8400.


Reader Comments(0)