Governor Gavin Newsom held a well anticipated news conference at noon today to announce how the individual counties could open retailers, offices and manufacturers by tomorrow. But for those counties ready to throw open their doors the announcement was a disappointment.
While announcing that trails, golf courses and car dealerships can open with modifications, not much changed for restaurants or retailers.
Restaurants are still relegated to take-out service. Retailers were also limited to curbside pick-up. When a reporter asked the governor how that was different from Stage 1, he said that now the state was legally authorizing it and providing guidelines. Before, he said, retailers and restaurants were just doing it.
On a placard behind the governor titled “Opening Later” were listed: offices that could not telecommute, seated dining, malls and outdoor museums. He did not elaborate on what were outdoor museums or their importance.
When asked about nail salons, Newsom reminded the reporter that it was at a nail salon where the first case of corona virus was transmitted. He said that even though the salon was using all the protective equipment normal for a nail salon such as masks and gloves the virus still spread.
Newsom said that further guidelines for how retail and restaurants can conduct business would be announced on Tuesday. He reiterated that Stage 2 was not a return to normal and that coronavirus was still spreading.
Regional variances will be taken into consideration, said Newsom, which is good news for lower-density regions such as Kings County. But he said counties will need to “work collaboratively with the state” such as discussing their attestations with the state public health officer before being accepted. None of this will be happening until next week he said.
“Next Tuesday we will move to self-certifying,” said Newsom.
Those attestations written by each county public health director will have to prove that the county :
- Has no more than one case of corona virus per 10,000 people during the last two weeks.
- Has no deaths in the last two weeks.
- Can protect essential workers and treat the sick.
- Have the capacity to test 1.5 people per 1000 residents.
- Do 15 contact tracing per 100,000 residents.
- Have hospital capacity for a 35% surge in patients.
- Provide PPE to vulnerable populations and workers such as in nursing homes
- Modify their plan to hasten or slow down opening up their economy based on data.
Newsom ended his press conference by saying that California is not out of the woods yet but that he hoped residents could see the light at the end of the tunnel.