Fighting entropy and COVID-19 in Malibu
Entropy is the concept that all matter is decaying to a state of lower energy. A spinning top slows and falls motionless to the floor. A Koi pond deprived of the pumps and attention that keeps it clear and beautiful, soon turns into an ugly mosquito infested green marsh.
For the last three months, we have been trying to keep from becoming a puddle on the couch in front of electronic noise. It’s been a challenge every day to find something useful that will move our lives forward after this finally resolves. Parents have struggled to keep (or telecommute to) their jobs while entertaining and educating their children. Worry abounds.
The City has faced the same challenges. The Staff and City Council had heard loud and clear the community’s feelings of abandonment in the immediate aftermath of Woolsey. They have worked diligently to keep the citizens informed on a daily basis as COVID-19 lockdown unfolded. The Planning Department and Building & Safety continued to accept and process applications to rebuild. They have learned to use Zoom and video meetings to conduct meetings and hearings that are open to the public. Staff has continued to interact with the State and County Governments to coordinate our responses for the closure and reopening of Malibu.
Malibu worked closely with Sean Penn’s CORE to schedule and man many days of Coronavirus testing which tested over 3,000 individuals. Only 35 residents have been diagnosed as I write this and only John Bell, a longtime friend, resident and pillar of the community, has been acknowledged as a fatality. Let’s all pray there are no more.
The City’s was healthy financially before the shutdown and our reserves, replenished by the SCE Woolsey settlement just last December, will allow the continued services we have come to expect. A recent article in the Washington Post outlined the difficulties faced by more than 2,100 cities whose overstressed budgets cratered as everyone entered lockdown mode. The further damage those cities are now suffering due to demonstrations and rioting isn’t making their futures any brighter.
As we reopen it will be confirmed that the retail landscape has changed. Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf isn’t coming back and neither is Casa Escobar. Others are teetering on the brink. Please do everything you can to shop locally as soon as you can shop anywhere.
This hasn’t been easy for anyone. Congratulations to everyone for being fortunate enough to have decided to live in Malibu, the best part of Los Angeles County. I hope that we can all stay here and thrive again.