Group of residents sues Long Beach for closing boardwalk

A group of Nassau residents is suing the city of Long Beach for shutting down the boardwalk in response to the coronavirus.

Attorney Francis McQuade says a group of concerned Long Beach residents hired him to sue the city.
The lawyer says Long Beach broke the law when the City Council closed the boardwalk due to the coronavirus pandemic.

McQuade says the goal is to have the city go about closing the boardwalk the proper way and get the OK from the state Health Department.

At the end of March, the Long Beach City Council closed the boardwalk, saying it had become a venue for transmission of COVID-19. The beach is still open.

Part of the lawsuit claims closing the boardwalk is actually hurting social distancing measures, creating fewer places for people to go. The claim says one of the spots where people cluster is at the entrance to the beach on Pacific Boulevard.

Long Beach resident Richard Marino says everyone's top priority right now should be fighting this virus.

"I miss the boardwalk but to make a legal issue out of it, you know come on, it's a time of crisis," said Marino.

McQuade says the lawsuit isn't seeking any monetary damages, just for the city to get permission from the state to close the boardwalk.

"We don't want contagion. I'm with you on that guys. But I'm standing up for the liberty interest that may be at stake," said McQuade.

City officials say they do not comment on pending litigation.