3 Bay Area Counties Move Into Less-Restrictive ‘Red Tier’ in Reopening the Economy

Photo credit: Michael Browning via Unsplash

California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly, provided an update on the state’s blueprint for a safer economy Tuesday afternoon. The plan is statewide, simple, slow, and stringent.

Alameda, San Mateo, and Solano will all move from the purple (widespread) tier into the red (substantial) tier within the four-tier plan to reopen the economy. In the nine-county Bay Area, all jurisdictions are now in the red tier except Sonoma and Contra Costa counties.

Riverside and San Luis Obispo, will also move into the red (substantial) tier. El Dorado, Lassen, Nevada will move from red (substantial) to orange (moderate). Mariposa will move from orange (moderate) to yellow (minimal)

“This is great news for so many small business owners who have worked so hard to keep their businesses going,” said Warren Slocum, President of the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors.

“What this means is that you – the residents of San Mateo County – have made huge sacrifices to help slow the spread of COVID-19,” County Manager Mike Callagy said. “We have precious few moments to celebrate in these unprecedented times. But this is something we should all be happy about now that so many of our businesses can reopen and so many of you can get back to work.”

The substantial/red category means there were 4 to 7 daily new cases per 100,000 residents, or a 5-8% positivity rate.

Moving to Tier 2 (Red) allows:

  • Restaurants indoors (max 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer)
  • All retail indoors (max 50% capacity)
  • Shopping centers, swap meets indoors (max 50% capacity, closed common areas)
  • Personal care services – hair and nail salons, barbershops (open with modifications)
  • Museums, zoos, and aquariums (max 25% capacity)
  • Places of worship (max 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer)
  • Movie theaters indoors (max 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer)
  • Gyms and fitness centers indoors (max 10% capacity)

Bars, breweries and distilleries are not currently allowed to reopen.

During his conference, Dr. Ghaly’s reported on September 22nd California saw 2,630 new cases out of 131,273 total tests completed. 3,473 news cases are reported on a 7-day average and over a 14-day period, there is a 3% positivity rate. Sadly, 105 people died from coronavirus.

On a series of slides, Dr. Ghaly’s college, Dr. Erika explained, “Accessible, timely, and equitable testing is critical to our continued response to COVID-19.” She continued to say “Laboratories across the state are reporting results in 1.2 days, with 69% being reported within 1 day and 90% within 2 days.”

Although all of this is great news, San Mateo County’s Health Officer Dr. Scott Morrow, reminded people,  “This remains far from over…To get out of this situation depends on all of us. Our collective best course of action: No gatherings outside of immediate households, use facial coverings extensively, and social distancing.”

Watch Dr. Mark Ghaly’s full press conference here.


KGO Events


Stay updated with KGO 810

Subscribe to KGO 810’s weekly eblast to get the latest information on local news, events, and exclusives from your favorite personalities.