Beilby says most businesses are complying with emergency restrictions
Taft Police are taking a low-key approach to enforcing the closure of non-essential businesses and the stay-at-home order so far, and they were quick to quash rumors that police are making traffic stop to see if motorists are on essential business.
“Just to dispel some rumors or mis-information that may be circulating, officers from the Taft Police Department will continue to help educate individuals who are not complying with the social distance guidelines,” the department said in a post on social media last week. “This does not mean you are required to remain in your residence. Also, individuals are not required to maintain letters from their place of employment as some have asked. Officers are not conducting traffic stops for the purpose of enforcing the self-quarantine order. Officers are still responding to all calls for service and doing their part to serve and protect the community while using increased safety practice.”
Complaints against several Taft businesses have been filed through a reporting system on the Kern County Department of Public Health's website, but Sgt. Cory Beilby said for the most part local businesses are following the orders.
“The bulk of businesses we go to are in compliance,” he said. A few eating establishments may look out of compliance, Beilby said, but its only because they haven't put their chairs up.
It is a little different elsewhere.
In Bakersfield, police cited the owner of a gym who remained open despite several warnings from the health department, and he now faces a fine of up to $1,000 or even a jail term.