In a reversal, Newsom shuts down bars, indoors restaurants

UPDATE, 5 P.M. — The businesses that Santa Clara County health officials allowed to reopen this morning will have to close by Wednesday under new orders from Gov. Gavin Newsom.

That means shopping malls, barbershops, hair salons, gyms, offices in nonessential sectors and churches in Santa Clara County will have to close on Wednesday. Also, the county said no protests will be allowed after Wednesday.

Santa Clara County revealed this afternoon that it had been added yesterday to the state’s “watch list” of counties where the COVID-19 situation has changed for the worse.

This afternoon, the county health department released this chart showing what type of businesses must close:

Restaurants are still allowed to serve customers outdoors under Newsom’s order. Redwood City, San Carlos, Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Los Altos and Mountain View are all allowing restaurants to put tables on the street to serve customers.

MONDAY, 3:37 P.M. — Gov. Gavin Newsom today ordered the closure of dine-in restaurants, bars and other businesses that serve customers indoors in San Mateo County and other counties due to an increase in new coronavirus cases.

Santa Clara County, which allowed many businesses like gyms and barbershops to reopen today, may be forced to close those businesses in the next few days.

In San Mateo County, the following businesses have been ordered to close:

• Dine-in restaurants (indoor)

• Wineries and tasting rooms (indoor)

• Movie theaters (indoor)

• Family entertainment centers (indoors)

• Zoos and museums (indoors)

• Cardrooms

• Bars, pubs, breweries and brewpubs (indoor and outdoor)

The closures come just three weeks and four days after San Mateo County allowed those businesses to reopen on June 18.

The state ordered all 53 counties to close indoor activities at restaurants, wineries, movie theaters, zoos, museums, card rooms and all bars.

Each of the 30 counties on the state’s coronavirus “watch list” must also close gyms, churches, offices in non-critical sectors, hair and nail salons and indoor malls.

In the Bay Area, Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, Solano and Sonoma counties are on the watch list as of today.

Neither San Mateo or Santa Clara are on the list as of now.

The California Department of Public Health created the watch list to monitor counties in which the COVID-19 situation has changed significantly in recent days. The tracking includes spikes in confirmed cases, hospitalizations, outbreaks in congregate settings or an increase in transmission at workplaces.

As of Sunday, the San Mateo County Health Department reported 4,045 cases of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic in March. The county reported 108 new cases on Friday, surpassing the previous one-day record of 90 set on July 3. The county didn’t say how many people had recovered from the virus.

The number of new cases has increased in large measure due to more testing. The percentage of those testing positive in San Mateo County is 4.9%, below the state average of 7.7%.

However, COVID-19 death rates in both counties have plunged after hitting their peak in April.

Newsom’s lockdown order, issued in mid-May, has devastated the world’s fifth-largest economy, with more than 7.5 million people filing for unemployment benefits and an untold number of businesses permanently closing.

— From staff and wire reports


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