Recent San Luis Obispo County COVID enforcement numbers show more than 3,800 complaints were filed from the start of the pandemic through November.
According to a graph provided by the County of San Luis Obispo, numbers show most of the complaints are coming from people located in San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles.
For many businesses like restaurants, if they don't follow state and local orders, the first step is a verbal notice.
Numbers from July to November show four directed orders were given to businesses not following the rules.
County public officials say a directed order is enforceable by fines, imprisonment or both.
For restaurants in Atascadero, owners say the constant back-and-forth has been taking a toll on them.
"Oh yeah, it's so difficult right now and I'm sure it's difficult for everybody right now," Atascadero Bistro owner Viviana Romo said.
Down the street, at Don Q Restaurant, they say the thought of moving back indoors is constant.
"Yeah, of course, every day we think about it. It would be great if we can still seat people inside because as you know right now the weather is cold and it's really hard for the customers to sit outside," chef Adrian Rodriguez said.
But they say the fear and safety of customers comes first.
"The main reason is, like, to keep everyone safe. As we know, it's literally mandatory right now but if it was up to us we would love to have people inside, but safety comes first, so we just can't,” Rodriguez said.
According to San Luis Obispo County, more than 1,800 on-site inspections have been conducted in retail food facilities since March.