The decision, which will effect 75% of California, was made in response to a new spike in COVID-19 cases.
California Governor Gavin Newsom ordered 19 counties with surging coronavirus cases to shut down indoor restaurants, wineries, movie theaters, and other venues on Wednesday. These businesses were reopened at the beginning of May when California’s curve was flattening and the pandemic seemed to be more under control.
Newsom and other public officials are particularly worried that the 4th of July will bring large public gatherings, further exacerbating California’s already growing coronavirus problem. “We’ve seen increased activity where people simply aren’t able to practice social distancing,” he said at a briefing. “When we talk about this dimmer switch, it’s not an on-and-off switch. It’s based upon local conditions.”
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The new restrictions, effective in 19 counties, will affect about three-quarters of California’s population, including residents of the Los Angeles and Sacramento counties, as well as several counties in the Bay Area. Newsom also ordered the shutdown of all bars and breweries, both outdoor and indoor in these areas.
California will also close parking lots at state beaches from Monterey to Sonoma for the holiday weekend as State Parks Director Lisa Mangat says people should celebrate the Fourth “differently this year. ”
“Let’s do our best to meet this moment, as we met the moment many months ago and bent the curve again the first time,” Newsom declared. “Let’s do it again.”