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Coronavirus In LA: Mayor Garcetti Bans Non-City Employees From City Hall, Large Gatherings Banned

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Los Angeles City Hall will be closed to non-city employees due to coronavirus concerns, officials announced Thursday.

In addition to closing City Hall, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced he has also ordered the cancellation of all city gatherings of 50 people or more, and all events or conferences at city-owned properties expected to attract more than 50 people.

Under the mayor's order, the city is also barring more than 50 visitors at a time in any city building, and halting all non-essential travel by city employees.

"I know this is an anxious time for a lot of people, but Angelenos should stay focused on preparation and protection — not panic," said Garcetti. "We will continue doing everything we can to help guide people through this situation, and working closely with our local, state, and federal partners to keep our communities safe, aware, and informed."

MORE: Latest Coronavirus Updates

The mayor also called for a strategy to stagger entry for visitors in public buildings to no more than 50 at a time — including city museums, libraries, parks, pools, and community centers. Such plans would exempt LAX, the Port of Los Angeles, city shelters and transit locations.

L.A. County's chief health officer Dr. Barbara Ferrer also urged all private groups and businesses to voluntarily cancel any large gatherings and reminded members of the public who feel sick to stay home.

Garcetti's order follows new statewide guidelines issued by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday night, which details new California Department of Public Health policy that includes guidance to cancel or postpone all gatherings of 250 people or more, along with additional direction on protecting public health and slowing the spread of COVID-19.

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