Atwater, Coalinga allow businesses to stay open despite losing state funding

Despite the potential loss, leaders are standing firm on their decisions.
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Two Central California cities are at risk of losing emergency state funding because of local ordinances allowing businesses to remain open during the coronavirus crisis.

Despite the potential loss, leaders are standing firm on their decisions.

On Monday night, cheers erupted at the city council meeting in Atwater after the mayor declared the city would not give in to the state's notice. Mayor Creighton said the state's actions aren't about public safety, but compliance.

RELATED: State withholds funding from Atwater, Coalinga for defying public health orders

Last Thursday, Atwater officials were told by the state that the city won't receive some $380,000 in emergency funding unless they rescind their resolution that made all businesses essential.

Creighton said the city anticipated this move from Sacramento and balanced next year's budget with the expectation they won't receive funding from the state.

In Coalinga, the city council voted four to one to reaffirm all businesses in the area can remain open despite Governor Gavin Newsom's orders.

RELATED: Central California is a COVID-19 hotspot, state investing $52M to help slow surge

Councilman Adam Adkisson said the decision was made to make the city eligible for CARES Act funding.

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