Gov. Newsom issued an anticipated stay-at-home order Thursday that will be contingent on ICU capacity in various California regions.
Written by Edward Smith
Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a new regional stay-at-home order Thursday limiting business and restricting non-essential travel as California nears capacity on intensive care units.
In response to what the Governor says is a potential overwhelming of hospital intensive care facilities, the governor has said that bars, wineries, personal services, hair salons and barbershops should close once regions fall below 15% of available beds in ICUs. Restaurants would be limited to take out and delivery. Retail would be limited to 20% capacity. Orders would last for three-week periods.
The California Department of Public Health predicts that four of the five regions — including the San Joaquin Valley — will meet that 15% threshold within a day or two.
Critical infrastructure will remain open, as will schools that have received a waiver to operate.
The California Chamber of Commerce urged Congress to provide relief by way of additional funding through the Paycheck Protection Program.
“The loss of revenue many small businesses will experience as a result of this latest shut down could be catastrophic. We appreciate that the Governor has allowed retail to stay open even if it is at a reduced capacity. With so many small businesses relying on revenue from the holiday shopping season, we are encouraging people to take advantage of local retail establishments to do their holiday shopping,” said Allan Zaremberg, CEO of CalChamber.
Senate Republican Andres Borgeas (R-Fresno) said that if the governor were to institute stay-at-home orders, the government should use funds to support businesses who can’t operate.
“There is no question that California’s COVID-19 cases are surging,” said Borgeas in a press release. “However, if the Governor is going to shut down sectors of the economy, then California’s projected surplus must be used to keep businesses afloat and people working. Nobody likes this situation we are in, but California leaders need to step up and protect public health and the economy.”
Senate Republican leader Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) whose district extends into portions of Tulare County, asked the governor to provide data relating to mental health statistics, the achievement gap, domestic violence and child abuse relating to shutdown orders.
“Governor Newsom continues to disrupt life as we know it without releasing the full data behind his decisions or showing the impact his actions are having on our lives,” Grove said in a press release. “With all the changing guidelines over the last 9 months, evidence-based decision-making has to become the standard and not this hodgepodge approach advanced by the governor. Californians have a right to public health data that is being used to shape their lives, and the governor owes the state leadership that is committed to transparency and accountability.”
Most recent data show 18,591 new positive cases in 24 hours, averaging 15,121 over seven days.
To assist businesses, the state will offer a three-month extension for taxpayers who owe more than $1 million in sales tax.