Mayor Walsh said today that city health, police and parks officials are readying a system to crackdown on violations of state and city Covid-19 regulations that will likely include increased checks of both local businesses and private parties, a new fine system and, if that isn't enough, new shutdowns of parks with repeated problems.
At a City Hall press conference today, Walsh said he basically doesn't want to come back there and turn this city around, but that growing Covid-19 numbers and increasing complaints about house parties - in particular in South Boston - are leaving the city with little choice if it wants to avoid a widescale shutdown like the one that went into effect in March.
Young people in particular, he said, need to do their part. "I certainly understand the need to socialize," but for now, that should be over Zoom, not crowded into a poorly ventilated room without a mask or jammed together at an "unpermitted event" in a city park, he said.
New Boston Covid-19 cases are now concentrated among young people, but Boston is unlikely to avoid national trends that show such waves eventually spread from them to older, more vulnerable residents, he said.
Walsh said City Hall will soon unveil final details of the new enforcement plan, but he said one likely component will be a scale of fines - and enforcement of it. He said that with parties, tenants who throw them will be looking at fines - but potentially so could their landlords.
He said that police and parks employees will try to break up knots of people at parks, but cautioned, "if we have to shut parks down, we will," he said.