SAN RAFAEL (CBS SF) — Gov. Gavin Newsom has announced that Marin County has been added to the list of California counties that are being closely monitored for increased COVID-19 activity.

Marin joins Contra Costa and Santa Clara as the San Francisco Bay Area counties on the list.

The California Department of Public Health created the watch list of counties as the COVID-19 situation has changed significantly over recent days such as a spike in confirmed cases, hospitalizations, outbreaks in congregate settings, or an increase in community transmission in workplaces.

The watch list is based on COVID-19 data and triggers a review by state health officials of open business sectors and current COVID containment strategies among other factors.

“Now is the time for us to buckle down and be vigilant about adhering to key aspects of the shelter-in-place order,” said Dr. Lisa Santora, Marin County Deputy Public Health Officer. “Wearing facial coverings, adhering to social bubble guidelines, and practicing social distancing are among those aspects. We’ve made gradual steps forward, and without our continued vigilance we will be forced to shut down portions of our economy again.”

Newsom and state health officials have directed counties that are on the watch list for three consecutive days or more to close some indoor operations such as indoor dining, where mixing of populations beyond households is occurring.

Santora warned that if Marin remained on the watch list through Saturday, July 4, indoor dining could be required to close as early as Sunday.

If state health officials close an industry sector, they have indicated that it will remain closed for a minimum of three weeks. State officials also said they were forming strike teams to help patrol businesses that refuse to comply with COVID-19 safety measures.

“That’s why we need everyone’s help,” Santora said. “The best defense we have in preventing these closures and slowing the spread of COVID-19 in our community is to promote personal protective measures.”

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