SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Gov. Gavin Newsom on Sunday ordered bars that have opened in seven California counties to immediately close and urged bars in eight other counties to do the same, saying the coronavirus was rapidly spreading in some parts of the state.
Newsom listed the following counties where the mandatory bar closure orders will be in effect:
- Los Angeles
- San Joaquin
State officials asked eight other counties to issue local health orders closing bars include Contra Costa, Santa Clara, Sacramento, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, Santa Barbara and Stanislaus.
“Californians must remain vigilant against this virus,” Newsom said in statement. “COVID-19 is still circulating in California, and in some parts of the state, growing stronger. That’s why it is critical we take this step to limit the spread of the virus in the counties that are seeing the biggest increases.”
On Saturday, the state reported a rise of nearly 6,000 confirmed virus cases from the day before. Nearly 5,900 people have died from coronavirus complications in the state. The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.
The list of counties impacted by Sunday’s order was based on daily reports on the spread of the virus, state officials said. Counties that have been on the state’s watch list for between three and 14 days are being asked to close bars through local health orders. Those on the state’s watch list for more than 14 days are required to immediately close any bar that has reopened for business.
“We are actively monitoring COVID-19 across the state and working closely with counties where there are increased rates and concerning patterns of transmission,” the state public health officer, Dr. Sonia Angell, said. “Closing bars in these counties is one of a number of targeted actions counties are implementing across our state to slow the virus’ spread and reduce risk.”
The order comes as California grapples with a rise in positive coronavirus cases, especially among younger adults, following social gatherings over Memorial Day weekend, reopened businesses in many places, including restaurants, fitness centers and hair salons, and widespread street protests against police brutality.
Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg announced Sunday he supports any public health adjustments deemed necessary by Sacramento County, urging all residents to wear masks and maintain physical distance to not “go backward.”
FOX40 reached out to the Sacramento County Public Health Department but officials said they will not be announcing any adjustments Sunday.
A spokesperson for Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs released the following statement to FOX40:
Today, Governor Gavin Newsom ordered the closure or continued closure of bars in several counties, including San Joaquin, due to an increase in the spread of COVID-19. About 45% of overall cases in our area happened in the last 2 weeks. We must continue to practice social distancing, wear face mask, and reduce our travel to essential trips to help stop the spread of #COVID19. We worked too hard to bend the curve only to see us reverse this progress. Together, we can get our numbers back on track. Otherwise, we will continue to see a reversal of our progress, which is damaging to our health and our economy.
This story is developing. Check back for updates.