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Playgrounds to remain closed in Salinas

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SALINAS, Calif. (KION) - Despite some parks fully reopening around the state, playgrounds at Salinas parks will remain closed.

Salinas resident Martha Rabago says she doesn't understand why people keep gathering at Monte Bella in her neighborhood. She if frustrated and wants to see the city do more about the current crowding at local parks, specifically on the weekends.

"People are coming in and actually having soccer games. Like different leagues... having games at the park," Rabago says.

She tells KION nobody who comes to the park for the soccer games are wearing masks. Instead, they're drinking alcohol and leaving trash behind. Rabago says she contacted the City, the Parks and Recreation Department, and the County. She says she was told the issues at the park aren't being addressed because of Covid-19 and they have too many other things on their hands right now.

Rabago feels the people gathering at the park are breaking the law and should be find or held accountable by the city, but it's actually not illegal to go to the park.

Kristan Lundquist with the City of Salinas says because Salinas is driving the positive test rate in Monterey County, playgrounds will stay closed but the parks themselves will remain open for exercise.

"We don't have the resources to adhere to the guidance the state has issues with relation to opening playgrounds with modifications," says Lundquist.

Lundquist also tells KION the city has not taken a full enforcement approach and is focusing on voluntary compliance and educating the public. However, they say they are working with code enforcement and police to deal with large gatherings in the city. The city encourages people to reach out to them if you see large gatherings taking place.

Lundquist says to contact her directly at kristanl@ci.salinas.ca.us regarding large groups and gatherings.

Central Coast / Message Max / Monterey County / News / Salinas
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Max Tarlton

Max Tarlton is a morning anchor at KION News Channel 5/46.

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