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California Gov. Gavin Newsom says state is ‘days, not weeks’ away from changes to stay-at-home order – CNBC

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that 150 hotels have agreed to give deep discounts to health care workers logging long hours in hospitals while dealing with coronavirus outbreak, during his daily news briefing at the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Thursday, April 9, 2020.

Rich Pedroncelli | Pool | AP

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said Friday that the state is “days, not weeks” away from making significant modifications to its shelter-in-place order and could begin reopening parts of the country’s largest state economy. 

“I feel some confidence over the course of the next week we’re going to be able to make some announcements that will give people some more confidence in the ability for California to get back on its economic feet,” Newsom said.

He said state officials are “very, very close to making some announcements” that will be very meaningful to people in the retail and hospitality industries, including restaurants, although modifications will be in place. 

“If we can hold the line and continue to do good work and just avoid the temptation to get back and congregate with people in ways where we can see an increase in the spread, we’ll get there much sooner than many people perhaps think,” Newsom said. 

He cautioned, however, that the state could set its progress in fighting the coronavirus outbreak back if people congregate and don’t adhere to social distancing guidelines, referencing those who congregated on the state’s beaches last weekend. 

Newsom said ICU numbers were flat on Thursday and hospitalizations have gone down slightly, too. A bigger decrease: Patients who are in the hospital who are believed to have Covid-19 but haven’t received results are down 14%. He said, however, that the state now has more than 50,000 Covid-19 cases and more than 2,000 people have died. 

California has now conducted more than 655,000 coronavirus tests and averages nearly 25,000 tests per day, Newsom said.

On Thursday, Newsom said he planned to close state and local beaches in Orange County, calling the images of huge crowds that occupied the beaches over the weekend “disturbing.” 

Orange County officials pushed back on the order later Thursday. The city councils for both Huntington Beach and Dana Point voted that evening to take legal action against Newsom’s order to close the county’s state and local beaches. Massive crowds also gathered in Huntington Beach on Friday to protest the order.

Orange County Sheriff Don Barnes said that the order unfairly singled out Orange County beaches. Barnes said the order “is wrong and fails to recognize the sacrifice made by our 3 million residents,” according to a tweeted statement Thursday.

Newsom said he was not surprised by the lawsuits and that he has confidence in local law enforcement to carry out the order. He added that if huge crowds don’t descend on the beaches this weekend, then officials could be in a position as early as Monday or Tuesday to “make some announcements of new strategies and partnerships”to address the large crowds.

“The only thing, I mean it, the only thing that’s going to hold us back is a spread of this virus,” Newsom said. “And the only thing that is assured to advance the spread of the virus is thousands of people congregated together not practicing social distancing or physical distancing.” 

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Governor Gavin Newsom Closes Orange County Beaches, Even As Many States Begin To Open Up – Deadline

Citing images of beachgoers crowding the sand at Newport Beach last weekend, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Thursday that he would close the beaches in Orange County.

“We’re guided by health,” the governor said while calling the closing a “temporary pause” and citing the need to “meet the conditions as they change.”

It had been reported that Newsom would close all the state’s beaches from the Mexico border to the northern boundary with Oregon. Those reports were based on a police memo obtained by media. Asked about the memo, Newsom said with a smile, “That was their memo, but that memo never got to me.”

On Monday, Newsom signaled concern about Newport Beach and some beaches in Ventura County.

“We can’t see images like we saw, particularly on Saturday, in Newport Beach and elsewhere,” Newsom said Monday. “This virus doesn’t take the weekends off. This virus doesn’t go home because it’s a beautiful sunny day around our coasts.”

On Tuesday, despite Newsom’s admonition, the Newport’ Beach City Council voted to keep its beaches open, with additional enforcement of physical distancing.

L.A. County Coronavirus Update: 733 New Cases As CDC Issues Guidelines For Disinfecting During Reopening

Later, a member of the Orange County Board of Supervisors called news of Newsom’s expected Friday announcement an “overreaction.”

This as, according to CNN, at least 31 states have plans to begin loosening restrictions in the next few days. Ironically, despite the beach order, California is among them.

On Tuesday Newsom revealed a “California Resilience Roadmap,” which plots out a four-stage reopening. According to the Roadmap, the state is currently at stage one.

The next stage will be “gradually reopening low-risk workplaces,” such as retail, manufacturing, offices and more public spaces. These first reopenings could happen within weeks. Movie theaters and sporting events (without crowds) would open in stage 3.

CA has made progress bending the curve but the risk of #COVID19 is still very real.

Today, Governor @GavinNewsom announced details on how CA plans to modify the Stay-At-Home order in the future.

These modifications are based on science, health & data & will happen in 4 stages: pic.twitter.com/KUDhu7sowk

— Office of the Governor of California (@CAgovernor) April 28, 2020

Newsom announced that officials are contemplating a July or August start for the fall school term. “We have made no decisions,” the governor said at his daily briefing, but noted officials “recognize there’s been a learning loss.”

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