Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday that some Californians could soon shop in person at bookstores, florists and retailers that present a relatively low risk of spreading coronavirus. The governor plans to outline those plans on Thursday and they could take effect as early as Friday.
That doesn’t necessarily mean local health officials will ease their own restrictions, which are not set to expire until May 31.
The opening of limited retail represents “Stage 2” of the state’s plans to reopen its businesses, schools and other aspects of society. California is in a position to roll back some provisions of the stay-at-home order because of progress on hospitalizations due to COVID-19, hospital surge and testing capacity, the stockpile of personal protective equipment and other measures.
State officials envision beginning to open clothing stores, toy stores and other small retail shops like those on the coast. Stores might open with specific social distancing protocols or for curbside delivery. The state does not plan to open restaurant dining rooms just yet.
And local health officials can keep more stringent guidelines in place longer. It was not immediately clear whether the six Bay Area counties — including San Mateo county — that preceded the governor in calling for sheltering would follow suit this week.