At a press conference on Monday, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that California would begin reopening hair salons, barbershops, in-store non-essential retail, and major sporting events sans spectators as early as June 1st.
A June Phase 3 reopening
The re-openings would be contingent on COVID-19 coronavirus transmission rates continuing to either hold steady or fall in the coming weeks. Hospitals would also have to report no increases of stress on staff or supplies.
“Sporting events, pro sports, in that first week or so of June without spectators and modifications and very prescriptive conditions also can begin to move forward,” stated Governor Newsom at the press conference. “And a number of other sectors of our economy will open up, again, if we hold these trend lines in the next number of weeks. And that includes, for example, getting a haircut.”
While local counties and cities can decide on later reopening dates depending on their situation, such as Los Angeles not lifting stay-at-home orders until July, the early June Phase 3 reopening would apply immediately to most counties in the state.
California was joined by New York in trying to reach a sporting event reopening by the summer. Along with Florida, who had previously declared live sports to be “essential’ services,” a push by some of the larger states in the country could spur sports leagues into devising summer and fall plans more quickly. With billions on the line and tens of thousands related jobs being affected, leagues opening up in June could possibly give the economy, as well as people’s morale, a lift.
“We usually have leagues deal with union lockouts or natural disasters delaying games and seasons,” explained sports analyst Shane Kaufman. “This is the first time a league-wide health scare has happening in North America since the Spanish Flu. This is all new territory and it will take the leagues time to adjust.”
Rural and urban counties now have more freedom on when to reopen
The governor’s modified reopening announcement also took into account rural counties and urban counties having different reopening dates. While the state will still open up in phases, counties proving themselves to be adequately prepared and have low coronavirus figures were confirmed by Gov. Newsom to be allowed to reopen before more denser counties.
Governor Newsom’s conference was held in high regard by both Democrats and Republicans as it pushed safety and caution while also bringing about more re-openings soon across the state.
“Over the last several weeks, I have worked with local leaders and submitted numerous requests to the Governor to make critical modifications to the Stay-At-Home Order,” said Senate Republican Leader Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield), in a press statement. “The Governor’s original ‘one-size-fits-all’ plan unfairly places Kern, Tulare, and San Bernardino counties on the same spectrum as San Francisco and Los Angeles counties.”
“I want to thank the governor for making such an important modification as it is necessary to revive our local economies, support businesses, and employ Californians.”
Spectators are not expected back at games until Phase 4 is implemented. Governor Newsom has repeatedly said that Phase 4, a full reopening, would not happen until a vaccine is ready.