County, city leaders address Fourth of July beach concerns

Posted at 7:51 PM, Jun 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-23 21:24:01-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Memorial Day Weekend brought plenty of visitors and residents alike to our local beaches, and Neces Co. Coastal Parks director Scott Cross expects the numbers to be even larger for Fourth of July next weekend.

"I expect we're going to see this thing on steroids for the Fourth of July week and weekend," he said.

The number of novel coronavirus cases in Nueces county have more than doubled over the last week. With the big holiday weekend approaching, are city and county leaders expecting to close or limit the beaches?

Corpus Christi Mayor Joe McComb says no.

"We have not discussed the idea of closing the beaches," he said. "The beaches belong to the state even though they are inside the city limits of Corpus Christi and Nueces county."

Nueces Co. Judge Barbara Canales said when it comes to the safety of people on the beaches, she referenced a tactic the county used when the pandemic first hit home.

"We were able to create some good rules," Canales said. "We had a curfew at 8 o'clock. All of those things might be on the table."

The majority of visitors who are coming to the area beaches are from out of town.

According to Cross, from June 1 through the week after July 4, 54 percent of people registered with the coastal parks are from San Antonio.

McComb addressed the concerns with being what he called "San Antonio's beach."

"We'd like for them to come," he said. "But we need them to be safe."

Canales said she and her team are working with the Texas General Land Office implementing safety measures on the beaches for the holiday traffic, but closing them completely, or limiting the number of people who will be allowed to go, is not an option.

All leaders are advising personal responsibility when it comes to perole's personal safety, and the community around them.

"People need to take this seriously," McComb said.

While many will enjoy the beaches for the holiday, Tatiana Estaniaslao, whose mother is a front-line worker, will be staying away.

"I think they should limit it since there is a rise especially in Texas," she said. "I think it is better to be safe than sorry."