Visitors read a notice hanging on the Polk Street entrance to City Hall on Thursday, March 26, 2020, shortly after the building was closed. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

Visitors read a notice hanging on the Polk Street entrance to City Hall on Thursday, March 26, 2020, shortly after the building was closed. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

City Hall reopening to the public on June 7 after long closure due to COVID-19

San Francisco will reopen City Hall to the public on June 7 for the first time since its closure more than a year ago due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

After nearly 15 months, City Hall will reopen for general public access and for people to use services in-person including applying for marriage licenses, obtaining birth and death certificates, business registration and paying business or property taxes and fees, Mayor London Breed and City Administrator Carmen Chu announced Wednesday.

Breed said in a statement that the reopening “is a significant step in our reopening process.”

“City Hall is the heart of our civic life,” she said.

Visitors to the gold-domed building sometimes referred to as the “People’s Palace” will have to wear face coverings and remain six feet apart from members of other households. People will be allowed to enter from the Polk Street side of the building or the Grove Street side, where they will go through security screenings. The entrances on Van Ness Avenue and MacAllister Street will remain closed.

City Hall will also resume indoor wedding ceremonies. The County Clerk will begin accepting appointments online Wednesday for in-person marriage ceremonies, which will resume once City Hall reopens next month. Marriage ceremonies will be limited to no more than six guests.

People will be able to use the counter services at a number of agencies located at City Hall including the Treasurer and Tax Collector’s Office, the Assessor’s Office, County Clerk and Office of Small Business.

Chu said that reopening will “ensure that those who haven’t been able to connect with us online or by phone have another avenue to access critical services.”

A week before the reopening, people will be allowed to make appointments for some limited in-person services by appointment only.

Following the reopening announcement, Board of Supervisors president Shamann Walton announced that the board’s Office of the Clerk will reopen to the public on June 8 and the individual District Supervisor offices will be open to the public by appointment-only.

The supervisors will resume in-person meetings starting on June 15 in the board chambers at City Hall, but the public will still have to participate in the meetings remotely “pending updated health and safety guidance from the Health Officer regarding large indoor public gatherings.”

“For far too long, this pandemic has kept us away from each other, removed the personal interactions to serve our constituents, and prevented us from working together as a board in a more connected manner,” Walton said in a statement. “We are excited to safely bring the Board of Supervisors meetings back to the chamber and this is the first step in moving towards reopening City Hall to provide access to the public.”

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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