PLACER COUNTY (CBS13) – Placer County has asked the Courtside Basketball Center to shut down after at least 30 positive coronavirus cases were linked to a youth basketball tournament at the facility.
Owner Jacob Biagi said the Placer County facility “will continue to operate” despite public health orders requiring indoor fitness facilities to close and banning contact sports.
“Student-athletes and youth sports – this is part of their lives as well. It’s also necessary and vital to a healthy lifestyle,” Biagi said.
The Placer County Department of Health and Human Services released a statement this week warning residents to avoid the center after an outbreak of 30 positive cases were linked to the facility.
“The outbreak has the potential to be large and geographically diverse,” said Director of Health & Human Services Rob Oldham.
Courtside said it’s game on anyway. More than 40 teams are expected to play in a basketball tournament this weekend.
“We will continue to operate with the best safety practices that we have,” Biagi said. “Mandatory masks, temperature checks, refs wear masks, sanitizing machines. I’ve been pretty comfortable with it.”
Shane Butler’s children play at Courtside Basketball Center.
“It’s been a great sense of normalcy for my kids. My family not worried about getting it,” he said.
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Though, not every family is as lucky. More than 6,000 people in Placer County have had coronavirus and nearly 70 have died from it.
“At this point, public health has exhausted the tools in their tool belts,” Oldham said.
The county health department is now scrambling to get a grip on a growing COVID surge while sports facilities, gyms, and restaurants continue to operate indoors.
“We have to learn to basically operate to live with this type of virus,” Biagi said.
Placer County officials said they are in touch with the California Department of Public Health regarding Courtside Basketball Center but so far, the county’s approach has been education over enforcement.