California Governor Issues Regional Stay-at-Home Order

On Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a limited regional stay-at-home order for certain areas in California where COVID-19 cases are straining hospitals and intensive care units (ICUs). This announcement comes one day after California reported approximately 8,208 COVID-19-related hospitalizations.

Under this order, California will be split into five regions—Southern California, Northern California, San Joaquin Valley, Greater Sacramento and the Bay Area. A three-week stay-at-home order will be triggered in a region if the remaining ICU capacity within that region falls below 15%.

On Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020, the California Department of Public Health said that a stay-at-home order was triggered in the Southern California and San Joaquin Valley regions. The orders took effect at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020, and will last for at least three weeks. At this time, stay-at-home orders have not been triggered in the other three regions.

Regional Stay-At-Home Order

What businesses will be required to close?

If a three-week stay-at-home order is triggered, bars, wineries, hair salons, barbershops and personal services (e.g., nail salons and tattoo parlors) would be required to temporarily close. Restaurants would not be allowed to be open for dining in, but would be allowed to offer takeout and delivery. Additionally, retail stores would be allowed to operate at a 20% capacity.

What businesses will be allowed to remain open?

Critical infrastructure and schools that meet the state’s health requirements will be allowed to remain open during a three-week stay-at-home order.

“The bottom line is if we don’t act now, our hospital system will be overwhelmed. If we don’t act now, we’ll continue to see a death rate climb, more lives lost.”

– Gov. Newsom

What activities are permitted during a stay-at-home order?

Under a stay-at-home order, Californians are permitted to go outside to exercise or get some fresh air, as long as social distancing measures can be observed. However, nonessential trips to the store should be avoided and gatherings with those who do not live in their household are prohibited.

What’s next?

California residents should monitor the news for the latest developments within their region and continue to follow the guidelines imposed by their county, which may include observing a 10 p.m. curfew. We will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates as necessary.

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