South Lake Tahoe is cracking down on tourists and short-term rental owners who violate the statewide shelter-in-place order, enforcing hefty citations to those who don’t comply.
The city is discouraging tourists from flocking to its beaches amid the coronavirus pandemic, warning that hotel and short-term rental owners will be fined $1,000 for allowing them to stay at their properties.
"We are a tourism economy," South Lake Tahoe Mayor Pro Tem Tamara Wallace told KCBS Radio. "We don’t want people to feel like we’re pushing people out of here. We’re just trying to follow the rules."
Meanwhile, the city has relaxed previously-stated restrictions for second home owners, announcing they're allowed to return to the region as warmer weather sets in.
"We have a lot of people who live here in the summer and live elsewhere in the winter," Wallace said. "We call them snowbirds. So, those people are welcome to come back to Lake Tahoe."
Some restaurants in the area are back open at 50% capacity, which is concerning to city officials just ahead of the busy Memorial Day weekend.
"We just ask that if (tourists) do make their way back here that they follow the rules, practice social distancing and that they do not congregate," Wallace explained.
If you do want to visit and stay, Wallace suggested getting a place in nearby Nevada instead.
"Nevada has lot of properties open, so just a few miles away you can get a hotel room for the night," Wallace said.
The ban on short-term rentals does not apply to essential workers.