About 90% of California’s nearly 40 million residents can enjoy a restaurant meal indoors, watch a movie at a theater and sweat it out inside a gym after more counties were authorized to open up to business thanks to low coronavirus case rates throughout the state.
California has been on a reopening roll since a deadly winter surge that saw skyrocketing hospitalizations and positivity rates. San Diego and Sacramento were among the counties that moved out of the most restrictive purple tier, public health officials announced Tuesday.
Los Angeles and a dozen other counties were allowed to reopen Sunday, moving to the lower-risk red tier of a four-tier, color-coded system announced by Gov. Gavin Newsom in August. The system dictates which activities can open based on factors such as a county’s case rates per population and test positivity.
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San Mateo County, just south of San Francisco, will even be able to welcome customers to outdoor bars that don’t serve meals after moving to the orange tier this week. It can also open bowling alleys, cardrooms and wineries, breweries and distilleries at 25% capacity indoors.
At this level, indoor capacity at houses of worship, restaurants, movie theaters and museums, zoos and aquariums can increase to 50%. Indoor gyms and fitness centers can increase capacity from 10% to 25%.
San Francisco’s Mayor London Breed, who received a vaccine shot Tuesday, said she expects the city to move into the orange tier next week.
In total, 42 counties are in the “substantial” risk level. The 11 counties still in the most restricted tier are largely in the central valley, including Fresno and Kern.