L.A. County to discuss new state guidance; here’s what can and can’t open

Owner Maria Barcenas prepares hair color for a customer in the rear parking lot at Maria Argelia's Beauty Salon in Newhall on Wednesday, Augus19, 2020. Dan Watson/The Signal
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Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger said Monday county officials are expected to meet Tuesday to review California’s new state guidance criteria, which aims for a more gradual reopen than the previous framework. 

Until the Board of Supervisors and the county Department of Public Health decide on what actions are appropriate for the county, all current orders remain in place, such as prohibiting indoor operations for hair salons and shopping malls. 

The county health officer order had not changed Monday since its last revision on Aug. 12, according to Public Health’s website. While state officials announced Friday what can and cannot open via the new color-coded, tiered blueprint, they reiterated that county reopening orders can be more stringent than state orders, but not vice-versa. 

“(O)ur board will be discussing with Dr. (Barbara) Ferrer tomorrow the protocol moving forward to recognize the state has allowed us to open, and we want to do it in a very thoughtful process so tomorrow we will be discussing and make announcements, hopefully by early afternoon,” said Barger. 

The state’s new metrics will guide counties through reopening its economy based on daily COVID-19 cases and positivity rates via the four-tier system: Tier 1 (purple) indicates a county with a “widespread” virus outbreak or having more than seven daily new diagnoses per 100,000 residents. Tier 4 (yellow) means the virus is considered “minimal,” or having less than one daily new case per 100,000 people. 

L.A. County joins 37 other counties in Tier 1 as it is currently facing a daily average case rate of 13.1 new cases per 100,000 residents and a 5% test positivity rate, according to Public Health officials. 

“(E)ven though the county’s current test positivity rate of 5% puts us in Tier 2, red, to this metric, when the two metrics fall in different tiers, the state places counties in the most restrictive tier. Hence, Los Angeles County, like most counties in California, has been placed in Tier 1,” said county Health Officer Muntu Davis during a live broadcast Monday.  

With new state guidance still under review, here is what can and can’t reopen countywide: 

Open 

  • Parks and trails, golf courses, beaches, outdoor pools and campgrounds. 
  • Day camps, hotels, libraries.  
  • Lower-risk in-store retail such as bookstores, furniture, toy, clothing and pet stores. 
  • Groceries, certified farmers’ markets, food banks, convenience stores, wholesale clubs and pharmacies. 

Outdoors only

  • Hair salons, barbershops and nail salons. 
  • Restaurants and cafes for delivery, drive-thru, carry out and outdoor seating only. 
  • Drive-in movie theaters. 
  • Gyms and fitness centers. 
  • Places of worship, including weddings and funerals. 
  • Museums, galleries, zoos and aquariums. 

Closed 

  • Schools; waivers for in-person instruction are expected to be discussed among county officials for consideration. 
  • Stores in indoor malls and shopping centers that you can only enter from the inside of the mall. 
  • Concert venues, live sports with fans, stadiums, lounges and nightclubs. 
  • Bars, breweries, pubs and wineries. 
  • Family entertainment centers, card rooms and satellite wagering. 

For a complete list for L.A. county, visit publichealth.lacounty.gov and to view the state’s tiered system, visit covid19.ca.gov

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