As the mayor of Long Beach, I believe it’s critical to address some concerns of the community, not only for the citizens of Long Beach, but also for our citizens of the Peninsula. Although I am elected as the Long Beach mayor, I have strong ties to the whole Peninsula and have supported the whole Peninsula during my terms as mayor.

During the emergency outbreak of the covid-19 virus, we have all been inundated with information, some good and some false. This is not the time for pointing fingers, but to take the high road to success. The bottom line is maintaining coordinated efforts to stay healthy and safe. We count on our elected officials to use common sense, meet their obligation for public safety, and most of all, have compassion for our citizens.

That balance must encompass not only our full-time citizens, but also our second homeowners. I believe both have vested their commitment, passion, money and love of our community and way of life. No one has a desire to infect others with covid-19, but we all have rights that we are entitled to exercise.

Yes, we are very blessed with being a destination people want to visit. At times that becomes overwhelming, yet it is our major revenue stream for survival. Those same second homeowners also become primary homeowners after retirement. They help support the many businesses we enjoy. Without them, we would have far fewer shopping and dining opportunities. All of us working together is what makes the Peninsula work.

With that in mind, we must all come together in taking personal responsibilities. If you are in the risk category, stay home and make as few trips as possible to the grocery store, pharmacy, and other essential locations. Wear a mask, use hand sanitizer, and wash your hands often. And most of all, use the many support options that are available.

All others need to adhere to the CDC guidelines, dealing with wearing masks, covering coughs, staying home if feeling ill, using hand sanitizer, and maintaining 6-foot social and physical distancing. But most of all, please use common sense and patience.

I do not want to see an outbreak of positive tests, nor — and most importantly — have our great citizens die of covid-19 when we can stop it. This is not a time to become lazy or complacent. Yes, it is trying, but everyone is sacrificing to some degree and some much more than others.

As the mayor and as a citizen, I am pleading with everyone to be tolerant with others, display compassion, and most of all, protect each other during these difficult times. I guarantee we will endure these challenges and come out stronger on the other side and be proud of how we all pulled together as a community.

God bless, stay safe and stay healthy.

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