State Health Officials Likely to Extend Stay-at-Home Order

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Many people have been counting down the days until the Bay Area’s stay-at-home order runs out, but on Monday, the governor indicated he and state public health officials likely will extend it.

It depends on COVID-19 cases and hospitalization numbers that will be tallied Tuesday, but an extension beyond the current Jan. 8 expiration would be tough on everyone in the Bay Area region, especially small businesses.

Enzo Rosano has three restaurants and is about to open a fourth in Livermore soon. He’s confident he will survive the ordered shutdown with the help of a supportive Danville community. He’s more worried about his 100 plus employees.

“Those people, they need to work, they have families, they have to pay rent, they have to buy the groceries,” he said.

At a news conference Monday, Governor Gavin Newsom updated the numbers relating to COVID-19 cases, deaths, and available ICU beds throughout the state. He stopped short of making it final, but made it clear what’s probably about to happen.

“It is clear, understandably, that it’s likely those stay-at-home orders will be extended based on data,” he said. “That determination will be made based on data that needs to be collected today.”

There are two regions the orders are set to be extended in California, San Joaquin Valley and Southern California, since those two areas have an ICU bed capacity of zero.

But the numbers in the Bay Area aren’t as clear. The ICU bed count fluctuates daily, so a decision on whether to extend stay-at-home orders won’t be made final until Tuesday.

“If they extend this another month or who knows how long, I think it’s going to be scary for small businesses especially since we can’t eat outdoors anymore,” said Ruth Ann Mayfield of San Ramon.

Rosano said the ban on outdoor dining is making the shutdown unbearable, and he says an extended stay-at-home order will be devastating for the people he cares about.

“What makes me mad is I have a lot of people, they want to work and they can't. I think they've been doing a lousy job to fight this COVID,” he said.

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