More of Galt’s businesses can reopen their indoor services or allow more customers inside, starting last week. State officials placed Sacramento County and nine other counties into the less restrictive Red Tier 2 status on March 16 after they experienced a steady drop in COVID-19 cases over the past few weeks.
This is the first time that Sacramento County has been in the red tier since November when Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a stay-at-home order on the county in an effort to slow down the rate of COVID-related hospitalizations.
On March 12, the state changed its metric for determining how a county qualifies for a Red Tier status in California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy plan. A Red Tier county’s COVID case rate is now between four to 10 COVID cases per 100,000 residents. Counties were previously required to have between five to seven cases per 100,000 residents in order to have the red tier status. This revised metric enabled Sacramento County to advance to the red tier last week.
As of March 16, Sacramento County’s COVID-19 case rate was 7.2 cases per 100,000 residents on a seven-day average, according to the county’s public health department. The county also had a test positivity rate of 6.7%, which fits the 5-8% rate that’s required for a red tier status.
Sacramento County’s case rate must now drop to 1 to 3.9 cases per 100,000 in order to advance to the Orange Tier 3 status, which allows more indoor businesses to open.
Sacramento County’s public health officer, Dr. Olivia Kasirye revised the county’s public health order to reflect its new Red Tier 2 status.
Businesses must still practice safety measures, such as requiring face coverings and social distancing. All retail can now operate at 50% capacity and supermarkets can allow 100% capacity. Gyms and fitness centers can have a 10% capacity, and restaurants can reopen their dining rooms at a 25% capacity.
On March 17, Cinemark announced they are reopening several California movie theaters, including Elk Grove’s Century Laguna 16 Theater, since such facilities can now operate at a 25% capacity.
This week, local school districts started reopening their schools for in-person learning. Students attend classes following various schedules depending on the school district.
These reopenings follow nearly a year after most districts closed their campuses after direction from county and state officials in Spring 2020.