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Judge temporarily halts transfer of coronavirus patients to quarantine facility in California city

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iStock(COSTA MESA, Calif.) — A city in California won a battle against the state Friday, at least temporarily, when a judge halted the transfer of people diagnosed with the coronavirus to its community for a quarantine site.

Costa Mesa, California, filed a legal action after it learned federal officials planned to use its Fairview Development Center to house and quarantine several patients who tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

The city said it was given little notice, and without input, about the plan.

“We have received no information regarding how the facility will be prepared, what precautions will be taken to protect those in the facility as well as those who live nearby, and other important planning measures,” Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley said in a statement.

Judge Josephine Staton, according to the city, issued the temporary restraining order late Friday night. An expedited hearing is expected to be held Monday afternoon.

Foley said the planned quarantine facility is adjacent to several residential neighborhoods and she and the Costa Mesa City Council were concerned about the safety of residents.

“Our top priority is the safety and security of this community and those who live in this region,” she said.

The city filed the injunction largely because it says it was excluded from the process and hopes to have a dialogue with state, federal and local agencies going forward. “A full and complete explanation of all plans is required,” the city said in a statement.

“Our staff and council have worked nonstop to piece together information, and we voted unanimously in an emergency meeting to file a request for a legal injunction to halt this plan,” Arlis Reynolds, a Costa Mesa council member, said in a statement Friday.

In the U.S., there are 14 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, according to the CDC. There are 21 people, 18 from the Diamond Princess cruise ship that was docked in Japan, who tested positive for the virus and were repatriated to the U.S.

Globally, there are reportedly more than 75,000 cases of the coronavirus, which has been declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organization, with over 2,300 related deaths.

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