SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) — California Governor Gavin Newsom on Monday major rollbacks of the state’s reopening plans as the coronavirus outbreak worsens in the state, extending the closure of all bars and indoor dining statewide and ordering gyms, churches and salons to be shuttered in counties on the state’s watch list.
Effective Monday, all indoor activities are being shut down across the state in the following sectors:
- Bars (all operations)
- Wineries and tasting rooms
- Movie Theaters
- Family and Entertainment Centers
- Zoos and museums
Newsom said the new statewide action applies to all counties, not just the counties on the state’s monitoring list.
In addition, the health department is requiring all counties on the state monitoring list to close:
- Fitness centers
- Worship services
- Offices for non-critical sectors
- Personal care services
- Hair salons and barbershops
- Shopping malls
“We’re seeing an increase in the spread of the virus, so that’s why it’s incumbent upon all of us to recognize, soberly, that COVID-19 is not going away anytime soon until there is a vaccine or an effective therapy,” Newsom said.
The state’s list of counties being monitored due to rising COVID-19 cases had grown to a total of 31 counties encompassing about 80 percent of the state’s residents. Alameda, Sonoma and Santa Clara joined Bay Area counties Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa and Solano that were already on the list.
At least two more counties are expected to be added to the list in the next day or two, said Newsom.
“We’ve made this point on multiple occasions, and that is that we’re moving back into a modification mode of our original stay-at-home order, but doing so utilizing what we’ve commonly referred to as a dimmer switch, not an on-and-off switch. The point of a dimmer switch was to make the point that as data and trendlines, as the experience of reopening in different parts of the state and people beginning to mix in different parts of the state begin to manifest, different conditions would present themselves,” explained Newsom. “As a consequence, we wanted to be prepared for those conditions based on the trendlines, based on the data, based on the science to modify our stay-at-home order subsequently. Meaning not on — open economy — or off — shut down — but a dimmer switch, looking at conditions throughout the nation’s most populous state.”
California’s coronavirus cases have increased 47% over the past two weeks with 329,162 confirmed cases, resulting in 7,040 deaths, an increase from Saturday’s total of 7,017. The health department reported 8,358 new coronavirus cases on Sunday.
Hospitalizations in California have increased by 28% over the past two weeks, with an additional 163 patients added since Saturday. The rate of positive tests over the last 14 days is 7.4 percent even as e number of tests across the state has surpassed 100,000 per day. Newsom said the data suggest not everyone is using common sense.
In March, California was the first state to issue a mandatory, statewide stay-at-home order to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The order appeared to work as cases stabilized in the ensuing weeks while other states grappled with huge increases.
But the order devastated the world’s fifth-largest economy, with more than 7.5 million people filing for unemployment benefits. Newsom moved quickly to let most businesses reopen in May. Like other states that took similar steps, a subsequent rise in cases and hospitalizations led him to impose new restrictions this month.
When asked if the state would be weighing in further on the reopening of schools in the fall, Newsom noted that while the state had already offered some guidance for schools a few months ago, local health departments and school districts would be determining their policy. He pointed out that both Los Angeles and San Diego counties had announced that the academic school year would begin with schools in distance learning due to the ongoing rise in case and positivity rates.
“I want to acknowledge and applaud the leadership of those districts for leaning in and recognizing their responsibility in this moment to give not just their children, but their caregivers, the system and their parents the opportunity to begin to adjust and make plans,” said Newsom.
Newsom added that although the state had worked hard to reduce the digital divide as far as helping students in need access the technology required for distance learning, there was still an enormous amount of work to do on that front.
In Contra Costa County, Tribez Salon of Danville owner Donna Bruner says the news cuts deep. The Salon just reopened two weeks ago. “I as a business owner cannot tell someone you can’t work to put food on the table, you can’t work to take care of your kids,” said Bruner. “I’m not gonna do it this time.”
Bruner says when she heard the latest directive she cried. “I went outside. I was hysterical. I was shaking. I mean so many of us can lose our businesses for good over this.”
Danville CrossFit ATI owner Ivan Alarcon says he has taken all necessary social distancing precautions to run his gym, before his plans to open were stalled again.
“As a business owner, this is me and my wife’s only job pretty much. We just had a baby a week ago,” said Alarcon. “It’s very frustrating but at the end of the day, we will wait and try to do what we can. “
But some say they have done everything they can inside salon walls. “We have done contact tracing and we have not had one issue,” said Hairstylist Wisti Quenneville. “Not one with this big of a salon.”
Last month, Sun Valley Mall In Concord re-opened and while the website Monday said it was open, the mall is also set to be shut down again.
Bruner said she is heartbroken for her staff and worries they might not bounce back this time.
“I just can’t tell them that I’m going to put them through this again. I stood up and I stood up tall to say we cannot work any longer when we got notice before,” said Bruner. “As much as they wanted to and pleaded with me to defy the law I obeyed. This time I can’t say that this is going to be my choice. It’s their choice.”
Juliette Goodrich and The Associated Press contributed to this report.