Governor Gavin Newsom issued a new stay-at-home order tied to ICU capacity and it could impact the Central Coast any day now.
While cases are rising across the state, hospitalizations have been pretty low in San Luis Obispo County compared to places like Los Angeles County and local public health officials are disappointed, saying we are unfairly impacted by these potential restrictions.
Once the ICU capacity falls below 15 percent within the region, lockdown begins and will last for three weeks.
The region has 48 hours to make the necessary adjustments.
Some local restaurants are already getting a head start.
"We've definitely added more drivers and are always looking for more,” Joe Cox, manager at Gino’s Pizza, said.
Gino’s Pizza has switched their business model to focus on take-out and delivery, so the potential lock down wouldn’t heavily impact them.
As of Thursday, there is one COVID-19 patient in the ICU in San Luis Obispo County while 16% of ICU beds are in use.
In Santa Barbara County, a little more than 60% of total ICU beds are in use, with 16% of them occupied by COVID-19 patients.
Those numbers are relatively low compared to the rest of the state; however, the Central Coast is being lumped in with places like Los Angeles and San Diego counties where hospitalizations are much worse.
“The numbers you look at them and they are absolutely insane,” San Luis Obispo resident Tim Eidson said.
Eidson said he’s glad he booked his hair cut appointment for Thursday instead of Friday just in case salons closed.
“I felt like we were just kind of recouping the loss from our last shutdown,” owner of Bluebird Salon, Maryah Lilly, said.
Salon owners just shelled out tons of money to prepare for the busiest time of year, but the holiday season for them may be canceled.
“At least with the first shutdown we were able to still have unemployment coming in because we were qualifying and it was such a small time that we were open, so people were still on the unemployment. Now we are going to try and have to file again, which could take weeks,” Lilly said.
Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham called the recent order "arbitrary," saying Gov. Newsom "must alter this nonsensical regional map to better take into account our area’s unique situation and hospital bed capacity."
Others are also criticizing him.
“[Newsom’s] hypocritical because he is doing the things that he is telling people not to do,” Los Angeles resident Tatiana Kovacs said.
Kovacs said she’s not going to let a potential shutdown ruin her holiday trip up the coast of California.
“We are trying to make the best out of everything even if it takes effect,” she said.
Some local residents said the new restrictions are necessary to curb the spread of the virus, even though it will be tough to go through again.