Colusa City Councilmember Greg Ponciano said although his initial thoughts leaned more towards an overreaction at the start of the pandemic, his attitude has shifted many times as the COVID-19 public health crisis has developed.
“Currently I’ve settled into a more cautious approach,” said Ponciano. “With that being said, I believe that there should be more local controls in place in a state as diverse as California. The people closest to the situation are best suited to make decisions.”
Ponciano said he believes the primary issue at this time remains the “shackles the state has placed on salons, bars and other small businesses, holding their state licenses hostage.”
“I think those businesses should be open and ultimately the consumer will decide who are taking the precautions and who are not,” said Ponciano. “The irony is that in a small town like this, the person not allowed to cut your hair is likely standing right next to you in line at the market.”
Ponciano said his biggest priority for the community of Colusa at this time is to get everyone back to work safety.
“I think we have demonstrated that we can take the necessary precautions to protect the high risk demographic while still moving forward economically,” said Ponciano. “Even if this were to go on another six months, our community and businesses have educated themselves enough to responsibly continue most operations safely.”
While Ponciano waits for the community to be given the green light to reopen, he said at the end of the day all he can do is continue to educate and update people. As a firm believer that small steps in a small town go a long way, Ponciano said he feels the community must be allowed the freedom to act as they see fit, so long as it does not negatively affect others.
“The citizens of Colusa are the most resilient and tough around,” said Ponciano. “I believe they are tired, frustrated and concerned about the future, but this community has always pulled together in tough times and endured. There is nothing Colusa can’t accomplish once they set their mind to it, I’ve seen it.”