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The rush is on to beat possible new COVID restrictions

Health warning
LA County Public Health

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - If you are seeing people in more of a rush today, it may be because of the dire warnings of another limited shut down due to rising COVID-19 cases in the Southern California region.

Currently hospital officials have data showing the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) capacity is nearly 80 percent in the region. If the remaining available bed capacity goes up to leave a 15 percent or less availability, the new rules will be implemented according to Governor Gavin Newsom.

Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Ventura Counties are now in a region with San Diego, Orange and Los Angeles Counties and that will have a bearing on the total numbers, and also the health orders.

Central Coast stores, barber shops, and hair dressers would be impacted by the new rules and customers looking to beat that timeline will be in motion.

Resident Charlie Lindberg was walking his dog at Shoreline Park and very aware of what could be happening before the weekend is over.

"We have what we need and we are set to go. My wife had to cancel her hair appointment,  she is not happy about that." He said he believes this is the right time for this plan.

Nearby Kim Lieberman said, "pretty much everybody I know is all in. I've done some things already like my hair and nail appointments so I'm good there. I am definitely ramping up my concern and carefulness."

She said fitness is part of her defense. "Getting outdoors is really important to me. Also maintaining my distance while I am outdoors, but most people are really good about wearing masks."

There's been concern about enforcement of the mask rules and who is in charge and what it takes to get compliance. It's been a debated issue with law enforcement and those implementing the health orders.

For frontline workers at restaurants and in the hospitality industry, this will be a big financial hit, presuming no government relief is approved.

"The people that serve too ya know, they have to have a job too. The bartenders and the waitresses and the waiters, they really need to have that. Without it the economy is going to go downhill really fast," said Lindberg who had a career at the Brown Pelican Restaurant in Santa Barbara.

Restaurants can still do take-out under the order as it has been released in advance, but for many it was a significant loss of revenue when this type of restriction was in place in April and most of May.

There were many people concerned about the squabble going on over another government relief package and how long it will take to roll out.

They say that will be vital to hold many  businesses together and those who will be temporarily unemployed.

The Southern California Region:

Imperial, Inyo, Los Angeles, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura.

Regional Stay at Home Order

In any region that triggers a Regional Stay at Home Order, all operations in the following sectors must be closed:

  • Indoor and Outdoor Playgrounds
  • Indoor Recreational Facilities
  • Hair Salons and Barbershops
  • Personal Care Services
  • Museums, Zoos, and Aquariums
  • Movie Theaters
  • Wineries
  • Bars, Breweries and Distilleries
  • Family Entertainment Centers
  • Cardrooms and Satellite Wagering
  • Limited Services
  • Live Audience Sports
  • Amusement Parks

The following sectors will have additional modifications in addition to 100 percent masking and physical distancing:

  • Outdoor Recreational Facilities: Allow outdoor operation only without any food, drink or alcohol sales. Additionally, overnight stays at campgrounds will not be permitted.
  • Retail: Allow indoor operation at 20 percent capacity with entrance metering and no eating or drinking in the stores. Additionally, special hours should be instituted for seniors and others with chronic conditions or compromised immune systems.
  • Shopping Centers: Allow indoor operation at 20 percent capacity with entrance metering and no eating or drinking in the stores. Additionally, special hours should be instituted for seniors and others with chronic conditions or compromised immune systems.
  • Hotels and Lodging: Allow to open for critical infrastructure support only.
  • Restaurants: Allow only for take-out or pick-up.
  • Offices: Allow remote only except for critical infrastructure sectors where remote working is not possible.
  • Places of Worship: Allow outdoor services only.
  • Entertainment Production including Professional Sports: Allow operation without live audiences. Additionally, testing protocol and “bubbles” are highly encouraged.
Article Topic Follows: Economy

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John Palminteri

John Palminteri is senior reporter for KEYT News Channel 3-12. To learn more about John, click here.


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