Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday declared a state budget emergency, citing California's $54.3 billion budget deficit, clearing the way for more funds to fight the coronavirus pandemic, according to a release from his office.
The move ensures the availability of funding for personal protective equipment, medical equipment and other expenditures necessary to support a recent spike in COVID-19 cases and the potential for a hospital surge.
The funds also will help provide the necessary services to vulnerable populations, the governor said.
As of Thursday, the state reported 195,571 coronavirus cases and 5,733 deaths.
Newsom's proclamation allows state lawmakers to pass legislation that would draw money from the state’s rainy day fund.
The state has averaged 88,000 coronavirus tests per day over the past seven days, Newsom said during his Thursday briefing, adding that it's still not enough. He reiterated that "we are still in the first wave of this pandemic; we are not in the second wave."
Newsom also announced a new, open-source platform that encourages mathematicians, scientists and other experts to help the state with modeling and data in response to the pandemic. That platform can be accessed here.
The state also released all of its COVID-19 data and tools for the public to view here.
The governor, urging Californians to continue to be vigilant with social distancing, hand-washing and mask-wearing, offered praise for Disneyland for its decision to push back its planned July 17 reopening date. The theme park did not provide a future reopening date.