On November 24th, at a Board of Supervisors that was filled with emotions, Supervisor Sheila Kuehl declared outdoor dining “most dangerous.” She stated, “Outdoor dining is probably more dangerous in terms of contagion than any other kind of business.” At the meeting, Kuehl joined in a 3-2 majority for a temporary ban to go in effect the next day.
Hours later, Kuehl dined at the patio of the posh Il Forno in Santa Monica. A spokesperson from her office stated, “Supervisor Kuehl has eaten at Il Forno virtually every night for many years, and on the last night that it was permitted by county health orders, she dined there alfresco taking appropriate precautions as recommended by the Department of Public Health.”
Besides the defense to her dining affair, the event drew criticism from all corners.
Dave Rubin, a former NBA player, wrote on Twitter, “As a concerned citizen of Los Angeles I’d like to know what you had for dinner at the Italian restaurant the same night you voted to close all the restaurants? Also, what wine goes well with power hungry mania?”
Another Twitter user said, “She literally said it was dangerous to eat outside, voted to ban it and then did that very thing a few hours later. You can’t rationalize the optics nor the stupidity of trying to support this.”
Before the L.A. Board of Supervisors, restaurant owners and city officials pleaded with the board to not re-impose the ban on outdoor dining, a ban that first saw its implementation back in March of this year.