SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California is largely closing again amid a spike in coronavirus cases across the state, as Gov. Gavin Newsom announced statewide restrictions Monday to again halt all indoor dining and close bars, family entertainment, zoos and museums.
At the same time, most counties, including Los Angeles, will be forced to shutter gyms, churches, hair salons, malls and other businesses under the new order, which is effective Monday.
The move further pushes Californians back inside during a time typically marked by summer vacations. The stricter measures to close gyms, churches and other services are targeted at 30 of the most populous counties in the state, where 80% of California residents live.
"This virus is not going away anytime soon," Newsom said Monday. "I hope all of us recognize that if we were still connected to some notion that somehow when it gets warm it's going to go away or somehow it's going to take summer months or weekends off — this virus has done neither."
The setback comes after the state said June 12 that dine-in restaurants, retail stores, bars, religious services and gyms could reopen with modifications in counties that met the state's guidelines. Newsom said the move Monday to resurrect tough restrictions was a response to a rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state.
"We're seeing an increase in the spread of the virus, so that's why it's incumbent upon all of us to recognize soberly that COVID-19 is not going away any time soon until there is a vaccine or an effective therapy," Newsom said Monday.
Newsom ordered tougher limits ahead of the July 4 holiday on indoor activities for counties experiencing a spike in infections. Counties are placed on a watch list when they experience a rise in hospitalization rates, community transmission or declining hospital capacity, with three consecutive days of troublesome trends requiring the area to add additional restrictions.
There are now 30 counties on that watch list, which, with Monday's announcement, will now have to close gyms, churches, offices with nonessential workers, malls, nail salons and hair salons.
However, Newsom said counties are likely to come on and off the watch list, which he said allows the state to operate with a "dimmer switch" to modify restrictions as needed.
Statewide, Newsom said Monday that all dine-in restaurants must close unless they seat patrons outdoor or offer takeout. In addition, wineries and tasting rooms, movie theaters, card rooms, zoos, museums, bowling alleys, miniature golf and other family entertainment centers will be closed across California.
Schools districts will continue to determine whether to return to classrooms following summer break, a decision that has varied widely across California. On Monday the Los Angeles Unified School District announced it would not reopen classes and will instead continue with online learning until further notice.
Even while overriding public health orders in counties across the state, Newsom said Monday that school districts are best positioned to determine whether to reopen classrooms. However, he cautioned that the state is monitoring schools and will continue to provide guidance on best practices.
"The dynamic nature of the spread of this virus means you'll be hearing a lot more in the next few days and presumably weeks as we get closer to the opening of the school year," Newsom said.
As of Monday, California had more than 326,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 7,000 total deaths, according to the Los Angeles Times' tracker.