Tue. Aug 4th, 2020

California Gov. Gavin Newsom Issues Statewide Closure Order of Indoor Movie Theaters, Restaurants

As novel coronavirus cases and hospitalizations continue to rise, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a statewide order Monday requiring indoor operations such as movie theaters to close, effective immediately.

Hollywood wasn’t entirely surprised considering the surge in COVID-19 cases, but is hoping the edict will be loosened relatively quickly. The vast majority of the state’s cinemas aren’t planning to reopen until July 31 (as of Monday, only 28 sites were up and running. Almost all are smaller, independent locations). The first Hollywood tentpole scheduled to hit the big screen is Christopher Nolan’s Tenet on Aug. 12.

The indoor theater mandate was part of a sweeping order requiring a number of indoor operations to close statewide in all counties, including bars, family entertainment centers, wineries and tasting rooms, zoos, museums and card rooms.

Meanwhile, Newsom announced that indoor operations in additional sectors will be closed in “all the counties on our county monitoring list.” Indoor operations include: Fitness centers, places of worship, offices for non-critical sectors, personal care services, hair salons and barbershops and malls. 

Counties impacted on that list include: Colusa, Contra Costa, Fresno, Glenn, Imperial, Kern, Kings, Los Angeles, Madera, Marin, Merced, Monterey, Napa, Orange, Placer, Riverside, Sacramento, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Joaquin, Santa Barbara, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tulare, Yolo, Yuba and Ventura. 

“We’re seeing an increase in the spread of the virus, so that’s why it’s incumbent upon all of us to recognize soberly that COVID-19 is not going away any time soon until there is a vaccine or an effective therapy,” Newsom said Monday.

“We’ve made this point on multiple occasions, and that is, we’re moving back into a modification mode of our original stay-at-home order, but doing so utilizing what we commonly refer to as a dimmer switch, not an on/off switch,” he said. 

As of July 12, 8,358 cases have been reported in the state with an 8,211 seven-day average.

The new order comes shortly after Newsom reiterated that cases “continue to spread at alarming rates.” The governor stressed, “This virus is not going away any time soon,” adding that the virus is not “taking summer off.” 

“This continues to be a deadly disease,” Newsom said, as he warned people that the virus is “still killing people” across the state.

California had 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. 

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Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett

Photographs are Courtesy:  AP

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