By Emily Alvarenga and Tammy Murga
Los Angeles County officials announced that hair salons and barbershops could resume indoor operations at 25% capacity and K-12 schools may offer limited on-campus learning.
County Supervisor Janice Hahn first broke the news in a tweet, writing:
“L.A. County’s health officer order will be updated to allow hair salons and barbershops to resume indoor operations at 25% capacity. Options for increasing capacity will be re-evaluated three weeks after Labor Day.”
Soon after, Supervisor Kathryn Barger, whose 5th District includes the Santa Clarita Valley, announced in a tweet that businesses in this sector could reopen as soon as Wednesday.
Officials in a county briefing warned, however, that a surge in cases as a result of reopening would set the county back.
“(W)e can easily be knocked off that path of recovery if we see another surge in cases after the holiday weekend, which was what happened after Memorial Day and the Fourth of July,” said Supervisor Hilda Solis. “So, please continue to do your part.”
K-12 on-campus update
K-12 schools may offer on-campus services as soon as Monday, Sept. 14, for a small cohort of students “with individualized education plans,” for those who require instruction for English as a second language and for students needing assessments or specialized in-school services, county Health Officer Muntu Davis announced.
Schools may be able to do so “as long as the school is able to fully implement the Health Officer’s reopener protocol. This will get children who are in the most need of in person learning back into the classroom.”
The update after Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Friday a new, color-coded tiered blueprint for reopening, where counties are assigned colors based on case and positivity rates, which ultimately determine how businesses can operate.
Under the state’s new metrics, L.A. County joins 37 other counties in Tier 1 (purple), which indicates a county with a “widespread” virus outbreak, having more than seven daily new diagnoses per 100,000 residents or more than 8% test positivity rate.
As last reported by Public Health officials Monday, L.A. County has a daily average case rate of 13.1 new cases per 100,000 residents and a 5% test positivity rate.
In Tier 1, L.A. County “may open some businesses and activities with modifications, including all retail, shopping centers at maximum 25% capacity, and hair salons and barbershops indoors,” according to the state’s COVID-19 website.
Modifications to the health order are expected to be released for details into safety protocols following the announcement. Before businesses can reopen, they are expected to implement the protocols and directives, which should be released with the modified health order, such as infection control and distancing requirements for reopening.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated when more information becomes available.