California Coronavirus Update: Governor Gavin Newsom Says Restaurants Can Reopen For Dine-In Service

Gavin Newsom
California Gov. Gavin Newsom Rich Pedroncelli/AP/Shutterstock

UPDATED TUESDAY, 12:20 PM California Governor Gavin Newsom announced on Tuesday guidelines for restaurants to reopen dine-in service. He said specifics were available on

“Today we’re announcing additional modifications statewide,” said the governor.

According to the state’s web site, offices are included in “counties that are approved to move more quickly through stage 2, offices workspaces will be able to open.”

Malls, strip malls, outlet malls “can be open for pickup.”

The list of Phase 2 sectors, businesses, establishments or that may qualify to reopen in counties approved by the state, include dine-in restaurants, outdoor museums, shopping centers and all in-store retail, all office-based workplaces, all manufacturing industries supporting retail and all logistics industries supporting retail. Bars will remain closed.

This takes California deeper into Phase 2 of Newsom’s plan to reopen. Phase 3 will include movie theaters and permitting larger gatherings, such as church services.

However, Director of L.A. County Health, Dr. Barbara Ferrer, said just minutes before Newsom’s speech that Los Angeles County would likely keep its stay-at-home order in place through July.

“I do think recovery will be months-long, based on the tools we have at hand today,” declared the region’s Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer this morning at a meeting of the county’s Board of Supervisors.

Newsom supported Ferrer’s decision.

“There should be no pressure, on local officials down in L.A. or anywhere,” he said, “to feel that they have to move into this space sooner, because their conditions are very different from some of these rural counties.”

Before reopening, the state says all facilities must:

1.) Perform a detailed risk assessment and implement a site-specific protection plan

2.) Train employees on how to limit the spread of COVID-19, including how to screen themselves for symptoms and stay home if they have them

3.) Implement individual control measures and screenings

4.) Implement disinfecting protocols

5.) Implement physical distancing guidelines

Newsom said this is the result of a plan by which the state has now administered over 1 million COVID-19 tests, which he called a milestone. The governor announced six new testing sites with the goal of further expanding testing in rural areas.

And, as “the capacity to test leads to the capacity to trace,” said Newsom, the first cohort of the state’s force of tracers is nearly ready.

He stressed that this is only “an opportunity” for local governments to open up. If local officials deem that they are not ready to take these steps, they do not have to.

Also the governor said Butte County and El Dorado County are the first locals approved to go deeper into phase 2 of their reopenings.

PREVIOUSLY MONDAY, 12:40 PM In his Monday coronavirus briefing, California Governor Gavin Newsom said he and the leaders of Oregon, Washington, Colorado and Nevada, including the governors and the speakers of each state’s legislature, are calling for the federal government to provide an extra $1 trillion in aid to those states. These are the members of the so-called Western Pact.

“These budget shortfalls are so much bigger than any state,” said the governor, adding that a big portion of the aid will go to helping public safety officials such as policemen, firefighters, etc, as well as schools

Newsom said this aid is needed, in part, because he sees real unemployment surging beyond 20 percent “getting closer to 22, 3, 4, 5 percent very likely.”

“The challenge is enormous,” said Newsom.

Newsom also said that nine additional counties had “self-certified” that they are ready to begin reopening. Those locales will be announced tomorrow, if not sooner, he said.

The governor stressed that “over seventy percent of the economy” of California is now open. He added that “more formal plans” for reopening specific sectors in “the dining space, the office space, some malls” would be revealed tomorrow.

“A new milestone in testing” would also be announced tomorrow, according to Newsom.

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