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Contra Costa County approves fines for violating health orders

Bay Area

CONTRA COSTA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) – Effective immediately, people and businesses caught ignoring state and local coronavirus health orders are now subject to a ticket and fines in Contra Costa County.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Contra Costa County supervisors voted unanimously on fines for businesses and individuals.

The consensus among the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors is that an alternative to criminal enforcement of public health orders will ultimately help combat the spread of COVID-19

Supervisor John Gioia said during the vote “if a higher percent of individuals wore masks and businesses enforced it, we wouldn’t have the surge of number’s we’re having.”

Fines will range from $100 to $500 for individuals and businesses could see fines from $250 to $1,000.

Supervisor Candace Andersen “We need to continue have compliance with the health orders, or we’re going to have even more freedoms taken away from us.”

A violation would amount to an infraction, rather than a misdemeanor or felony, the offender will have up to two days to correct their error.

“We have seen communities be successful, and that has been masking, physically distancing and restricting how much we interact with each other so we can get it under control,” Supervisor Diane Burgis said.

For indiviuals:

  • $100 for a first violation
  • $200 for a second violation
  • $500 for each violation within one year of the first offense

For businesses:

  • $250 for the first violation
  • $500 for second violation
  • $1,000 for each violation within one year of first offense

“Some of the other counties are doing much larger, higher fines. We’re trying to be reasonable here,” Supervisor Karen Mitchoff said.

Contra Costa County becomes the third county to approves fines, Marin and Napa have already voted for similar fines.

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