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Neighbors say open beach parking lots in Santa Cruz County are bringing in out-of-towners

beach parking lots in Santa Cruz County
KION

PLEASURE POINT, Calif. (KION) All beaches are open in Santa Cruz County. However, not all parking lots near beaches and parks are open to the public.

The county health officer has left it up to individual jurisdictions to decide what they will leave open or closed around beaches and parks.

Unincorporated Santa Cruz has left its beach parking lots partially open. At most parking lots barriers block about half of the parking space. Some neighbors say leaving them open is leading to more visitors from out of town coming into Santa Cruz.

However, the county of Santa Cruz said those spaces should be left open for other county residents who don't have parks near them but still want to get out and exercise.

“If we can make some of these areas available: our parkways, our paths and our multi-use trails to the community as a whole. That’s the right thing to do,” Santa Cruz county parks director Jeff Gaffney said

All state parks and beach parking lots are closed. The city of Santa Cruz and Capitola have also closed much of their parking near beaches.

The county said they will consider closing parks and beaches, like they did around Easter, if social distancing is not followed along the Santa Cruz coast.

Coronavirus / Santa Cruz County / Top Stories
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Drew Andre

Drew Andre is a multi-media journalist at KION News Channel 5/46.

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