California governor relaxes some criteria for reopening
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California is relaxing some of its reopening criteria and that could mean most of the state may soon be offering services such as dining at restaurants.
The criteria announced Monday by Gov. Gavin Newsom applies to counties that want to reopen faster than the state. While retail may open for curbside pickup statewide, restrictions on dining in at restaurants and other services are still in place statewide.
Newsom estimated 53 of 58 counties could meet the new criters.
The changes eliminate requirements that a county have zero deaths and no more than one case per 10,000 residents over 14 days. Counties no longer will have to meet a threshold for deaths. They can have up to 25 cases per 100,000 residents or no higher than an 8% positive rate among people tested for the virus.
They also must have no higher than a 5% increase in hospitalizations over a 7-day period or fewer than 20 hospitalizations over 14 days. The latter will ensure small counties don’t get penalized for just one or two extra hospitalizations.
Twenty-four counties in mostly rural Northern California had already been cleared to move faster under the old standards.
Citing a trend of decreasing hospitalizations and ICU patients due to the coroanvirus, Gov. Gavin Newsom says the state’s stay-at-home order could be drastically modified in the next few weeks if the trends continue, possibly allowing professional sporting events to resume without spectators by the first week in June.