California's Newsom

California’s Newsom deploys new coronavirus reopening framework, most counties under strict orders – CNBC

Gavin Newsom, governor of California.

Rich Pedroncelli | AP | Bloomberg via Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced on Friday a new framework for individual counties to reopen, outlining the possibility of non-essential indoor businesses and schools to return depending on the coronavirus’ spread in the area. 

The state will adopt a four-tiered approach to reopening where counties can move between the different levels depending on a county’s positivity rate, or the percentage of tests that are positive, and their case rate. Each tier — minimal, moderate, substantial and widespread — allows for more or less non-essential indoor businesses to reopen with modifications. 

The governor said 38 counties, or roughly 87% of the state’s population, will begin on the “widespread” tier, which orders most non-essential indoor business operations to remain closed. Counties on the widespread tier have a positivity rate above 8% and more than seven daily new cases per 100,000 people. 

The new framework moves away from what California previously called its “monitoring list,” which was a list of counties with stricter rules on its businesses depending on a number of factors, including Covid-19 hospitalizations.

Newsom said the new framework is “much more simple” as the state tries to rebound from a surge of cases over the summer after it tried reopening in May. The Golden State governor ordered all bars and all dine-in restaurants, movie theaters, museums and other indoor businesses across the state to close on July 13 as cases climbed. 

According to the new framework, a county has wait 21 days before it’s allowed to move between tiers. Counties are only allowed to move one tier at a time and have to meet the qualifications for the next tier for two straight weeks. 

“We’re going to be more stubborn this time and have a mandatory wait time between moves. We didn’t do that last time, and that’s a significant distinction between what we’ve learned from the past and what we’re now advancing in this more stringent — but we believe more steady — approach,” Newsom said. 

The new framework also will institute an “emergency brake” if hospitalizations grow and threaten the state’s capacity to treat patients, Newsom said. 

Schools will only be allowed to reopen for in-person instruction if a county is able to move out of the widespread tier, though they would still be required to wait two weeks before discussing whether to return students, California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said. 

California’s hospitals have reported a decline in Covid-19 patients after reaching a peak of more than 7,100 people in late July, according to data presented by Newsom at a press briefing. According to the data, there were just over 4,200 people hospitalized with Covid-19 as of Thursday. 

As of Friday, California has reported an average of 5,650 daily new infections based on a seven-day average, a decline of more than 27% compared with the week prior, according to a CNBC analysis of data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. 

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California Newsom

California Gov. Newsom orders bars closed in counties including Los Angeles, citing coronavirus – Fox News

California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Sunday ordered bars to close in counties including Los Angeles, while recommending closures in some other counties, citing the spread of the coronavirus.

The order from Newsom, a Democrat, affected the counties of Fresno, Imperial, Kern, Kings, San Joaquin, Tulare, and Los Angeles — the most populous in the United States. State officials have asked at least eight other counties to issue local health orders closing bars.

Officials in Texas and Florida have made similar moves, essentially pausing parts of their states’ economic comebacks as cases spike.

Gov. Gavin Newsom giving an update on the state's response to the coronavirus.

Gov. Gavin Newsom giving an update on the state’s response to the coronavirus.
(AP, File)

“COVID-19 is still circulating in California, and in some parts of the state, growing stronger,” Newsom announced in a written statement. “That’s why it is critical we take this step to limit the spread of the virus in the counties that are seeing the biggest increases.”

The governor’s decision Sunday represented a marked turn from recent decisions to let local officials decide how and when to let businesses re-open.


Earlier this month, Newsom ordered all Californians to wear masks while out in public amid concerns that residents have failed to voluntarily take precautions.

California, like other states, has recorded a startling increase in cases, casting doubt on whether to continue the course on re-opening the economy.

On Friday, Newsom announced that the state had conducted over 76,000 tests, with a 5.7 percent increase in overall cases in the past week. Statewide, there were some 4,890 new cases — the fourth-highest daily increase since the pandemic began.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health reported Friday that COVID-19 cases were spiking among residents ages 18 to 40, with cases in the county alone rising from 24,457 on June 10 to over 35,249 on June 25.

Public health officials have attributed the recent rise in cases to social gatherings and people not adhering to social-distancing guidelines, warning that more businesses could re-close if hospitals were to reach surge capacity.


As of Sunday, there have been some 206,000 total cases of the novel coronavirus and nearly 5,900 deaths.

Fox News’ Mike Lundin contributed to this report.

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Newsom reopening

Newsom: Reopening Yuba, Sutter counties a ‘big mistake’ – Los Angeles Times

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday criticized two rural Northern California counties that are allowing businesses and restaurants to reopen, saying their decision to defy his statewide stay-at-home order has put their communities at increased risk for a new coronavirus outbreak.

Sutter and Yuba counties, both north of Sacramento, allowed businesses to reopen on Monday after a similar decision was made in Modoc County in California’s northeastern corner. Officials in the three counties argued that they were less affected by the COVID-19 pandemic than hot spots such as Los Angeles and the Bay Area and said the shutdown was hurting their local economies.

“They’re making a big mistake. They’re putting their public at risk. They’re putting our progress at risk,” Newsom said during a COVID-19 briefing in Sacramento on Tuesday. “These are real exceptions. The overwhelming majority of Californians are playing by the rules doing the right thing.”

But Newsom did not say if the state would take any action to enforce the stay-at-home order and other statewide restrictions in those counties.

Instead, the Democratic governor encouraged officials there to abide by his more measured plan for reopening, which was announced Monday and will allow some retail stores across the state to reopen as early as Friday if certain safeguards are put in place.

Under the new statewide COVID-19 guidelines, the governor said bookstores, music stores, toy stores, florists, sporting goods retailers and others can reopen for pickup, and manufacturing and logistics can resume in the retail supply chain. Newsom said more detailed guidelines on the businesses that can resume limited operations would be released later this week.

Shopping malls, gyms, bars, barbershops, salons and similar establishments must remain closed under Newsom’s order, and in-restaurant dining remains prohibited.

Newsom said some of the restrictions would be eased if county health officials, in concurrence with their county board of supervisors, can verify that they have adequate healthcare facilities and personal protective equipment to care for COVID-19 patients, and the capability to test, isolate and track those who have the virus. Newsom said that if a county has a low number of COVID-19 cases, that will be considered when the state issues variances.

In spite of those requirements, however, Dr. Ngoc-Phuong Luu, health officer for Yuba and Sutter counties, issued new orders on Friday that allow restaurants, retailers, shopping malls, gyms, fitness studios, salons, spas and tattoo parlors to operate.

“They put those businesses at risk, not only the health of their communities at risk. I would encourage them just to do the right thing and know that we are committed to working with them as we have been,” Newsom said. “We have a process and protocol to do that. And so we believe in ready-aim-fire — not, ready-fire-aim”

The governor’s comments came during a visit Tuesday to Display California, a small business in Sacramento, to highlight his plan to ease restrictions.

Newsom also faced defiance in Southern California after he ordered the closure of all Orange County beaches last week. The governor took that action after thousands of beachgoers flocked to the the coast during the recent heatwave, ignoring Newsom’s pleas to stay at home and maintain a safe distance from others.

On Tuesday, the state announced that three Orange County beach cities — Huntington Beach, Seal Beach and Dana Point — will be permitted to reopen their stretches of coastline this week with certain limitations, including taking steps to avoid overcrowding and allow safe physical distancing.

The move came a day after similar plans for Laguna Beach and San Clemente were approved by the state, and several days after the Huntington Beach City Council voted to take legal action to block Newsom’s beach closure.

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