Most Californians will be subject to the latest statewide stay-at-home order from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., which starts Saturday and lasts for a month. Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the move on Thursday afternoon, comes as Covid-19 cases continue to surge, and it is expected to cut deeper into restaurant and retail businesses already struggling to survive.
The California Department of Public Health order prohibits most nonessential activity outside the home during those overnight hours in counties the state labeled as the highest tier of coronavirus transmission levels, according to the Los Angeles Times.
As of Friday, 41 of 58 California counties — home to 94 percent of the state’s population — are in that purple tier, including L.A. County and all of its surrounding counties.
Last week, there were just 13 counties in the purple tier, but rising rates of positive tests and seven-day average case rates in counties statewide pushed the majority of them into it. Overall, the state has reported an average of more than 10,000 new Covid cases a day over the last week.
That has forced restaurants, shops and other businesses to close or significantly reduce indoor activity. Pushing back on the measures, the California Retailers Association asked the state to release data justifying closures and warned that businesses would “shut down or move out of California” under current rules.
Not all indoor business activity will be forced to stop. The restrictions going into place are similar to the stay-at-home order adopted in March, during the first wave of the pandemic. Grocery stores and pharmacies can remain open and restaurants can still operate pickup service, among other things. [LAT] — Dennis Lynch