May 5, 2020
Authored by: Merrit Jones, Tom Lee and Marcy Bergman
California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced on Monday that certain low-risk retail businesses will be allowed to reopen on a limited basis if they meet state guidelines and conditions to be announced on Thursday, including by allowing curbside pickup as early as this Friday.
Newsom said shops that sell items such as clothing, books, music, toys and sporting goods, as well as florists, are as among those who will be allowed to reopen on a limited basis if they meet the state guidelines. Associated manufacturers that support the retail industry would also be allowed to begin production.
Whether a particular retail location can reopen, and under what conditions, also depends on the county and city where it’s located. Six Bay Area counties announced last week that their shutdown orders will continue through the end of May: These include Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and the City of Berkeley. Los Angeles’s county’s order is set to expire May 15, after which the county is expected to phase in reopenings.
Governor Newsom in his briefing acknowledged that counties and cities have the right to issue orders that may be stricter than the state’s order. However, he said some counties will be allowed to move further into the reopening process depending on certain criteria, including the stability of Covid-19 hospitalizations and the state’s ability to conduct more testing and contact tracing.
The California Retailers Association’s COVID-19 web page links to a summary of county and city orders within the state, as well as county orders nationwide. And BCLP provides a nationwide summary of state shutdown, shelter in place, and back to work orders orders here.
After Newsom’s briefing on Monday, his office office later clarified that the order does not extend to office spaces, restaurants and shopping malls. As the state progresses through this phase of reopening, being referred to as “phase two,” restaurants and other hospitality businesses will eventually be allowed to reopen.
Phase three of the reopening plan includes businesses such as hair and nail salons, movie theaters and events with live audiences, although Newsom said the state is not at that phase yet.