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Gov. Newsom announces new framework for county reopening guidelines

Posted at 12:49 PM, Aug 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-28 16:03:42-04

California Governor Gavin Newsom announced new reopening guidelines for counties in the state in his press briefing on Friday.

Gov. Newsom announced the state is moving away from its community spread watch list and will now be working with a uniform framework made up of tiers in order to monitor the spread of COVID-19.

Those tiers are color-coded and listed below:

  • Purple (widespread) - Many non-essential indoor business operations are closed
  • Red (substantial) - Some non-essential indoor business operations are closed
  • Orange (moderate) - Some indoor business operations are open with modifications
  • Yellow (minimal) - Most indoor business operations are open with modifications

County movement within these tiers is determined by case rates and test positivity rates. There are currently 38 counties in purple, which is a more than 8% positive testing rate, there are nine counties in the red tier which is at a 5-8% rate, there are eight counties in the orange tier which is a 2 - 4.9% rate and there are three counties in the yellow tier which is a less than 2% rate.

San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara County are both in the purple tier. This means many non-essential indoor business operations are closed. The biggest change in reopening for both counties announced Friday is that hair salons and barber shops are now able to operate indoors with modifications. indoor malls can also reopen with modifications. These openings still has to be approved by county health officers.

Counties must wait 21 days before moving to a less strict tier. The new process will put more power with the state instead of the counties. The new rules come nearly two months after Gov. Newsom shut down bars, restaurants for indoor dining and other businesses following a surge in cases.

You can find the state's new online tool here, to find out what is open and where.