California Gov. Gavin Newsom has ordered the closing of bars in seven counties, including Los Angeles, due to the rising spread of COVID-19.
Newsom announced the new order on Twitter Sunday, listing Fresno, Imperial, Kern, Kings, L.A., San Joaquin and Tulare as counties required to close bars. Meanwhile, the state recommended bars in Contra Costa, Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Stanislaus and Ventura also close.
“COVID-19 is still circulating in California, and in some parts of the state, growing stronger,” Newsom said in a statement. “That’s why it is critical we take this step to limit the spread of the virus in the counties that are seeing the biggest increases.”
The impacted counties were selected based on daily reports on the spread of the coronavirus. Those ordered to close local businesses have reportedly been on the state’s watch list for more than 14 days.
“We are actively monitoring COVID-19 across the state and working closely with counties where there are increased rates and concerning patterns of transmission,” state public health director Dr. Sonia Angell said in a written statement to the Los Angeles Times. “Closing bars in these counties is one of a number of targeted actions counties are implementing across our state to slow the virus’ spread and reduce risk.”
Of the order, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted Sunday, “As we started reopening more businesses, we cautioned that we may need to change course to protect public health from this deadly virus. I support @CAGovernor’s order to close bars in L.A. County and other counties to limit the spread of COVID-19.”
The new order comes shortly after Newsom mandating that Californians wear masks in most indoor settings and outdoors when distancing isn’t possible.
California has recently begun reopening the economy, with most counties allowing people to shop, dine in at restaurants, work out in gyms, visit hair salons and attend church services, among other things. But concern has grown as coronavirus cases continue to increase, something the state says was expected as more people get tested.
L.A. Public Health tweeted Saturday that “COVID-19 cases are spiking among LA County residents ages 18-40, with cases rising from 24,457 on June 10 to 35,249 on June 25.”
On Saturday, L.A. county announced 2,169 new cases and 23 deaths.
June 28, 1:45 p.m. Updated with L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti’s tweet.