Dear Industry Partners,
Coronavirus cases continue to surge across most of California, and business restrictions are in place for two of the five regions designated by health officials last week, along with five counties in the Bay Area.
Gov. Newsom yesterday offered some clarity on how the rules affect leisure stays at hotels for in-state and out-of-state travelers. Not all issues are resolved, and more detailed FAQs from the California Department of Public Health are expected in the coming days. California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly is scheduled to provide more details today at noon. His presentation can be viewed on the department’s YouTube channel
One thing is certain: The vast majority of the state – Southern California, the Central Valley and portions of the Bay Area – are now subject to stricter rules. Southern California and the Central Valley fell below the 15% ICU availability threshold the governor set to trigger regional business modifications that must stay in place for at least three weeks. The Bay Area has not hit the threshold, but San Francisco, Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin counties voluntarily adopted nearly identical restrictions. The Sacramento and Northern California regions are nearing the ICU thresholds but for now remain clear of the stricter rules.
Under the state order, a region will move out of restricted status after three weeks if at that point projections show it will clear the ICU threshold four weeks later.
The rules allow hotel stays in those restricted areas only for essential needs and travelers, defined as “COVID-19 mitigation and containment measures, treatment measures, accommodation for essential workers, or providing housing solutions, including measures to protect homeless populations.”
Hotel stays, the governor said Monday, are “not for tourists, not for leisure in those areas.”
In addition, the state order bans hotels from accepting or honoring reservations from out of state unless the guests are isolating for at least the minimum quarantine time.
The state order also includes language that does not permit overnight stays in campgrounds. Dyana Kelley, president & CEO of CampCalNOW, is working to ensure Special Occupancy RV parks can remain open for residents, long-term stays of two weeks or more, full-time RVers in need of shelter, and anyone traveling for essential business or services.
It is also worth noting that California’s statewide travel advisory remains in effect. It discourages but does not ban travel, and strongly encourages but does not require quarantines for people coming into California from other states.
As they did in March, health officials and Gov. Newsom encourage Californians to get outside and recreate during this period but to continue following all distancing and face covering protocols.
Also, restaurants in all impacted regions are restricted to takeout and delivery only. Retail operations can do in-store business at 20% capacity in the affected counties; standalone grocery stores at 35%.
The regional stay-at-home system guiding activities can be difficult and sometimes frustrating to interpret. Thank you for your continued understanding and perseverance during this period.