SACRAMENTO, Calif. — On Tuesday, Governor Gavin Newsom met with a small business owner in Sacramento to discuss how certain industries are planning to reopen later this week with COVID-19 safety guidelines in place.
“We’re not going back to a normal. We’re going to a new normal,” said Newsom, adding that right now is about having safety modifications and tools in workplaces until a COVID-19 vaccine is available.
On Monday, Newsom and California Department of Public Health Director and State Health Officer Dr. Sonia Angell, said they hope specific industries, like manufacturing, can reopen with modifications starting Friday, May 8.
“I have great expectations,” said Newsom.
Some businesses, like florists and retail stores, could reopen with safety plans in place. Friday's target date marks the beginning of California's reopening phase two. Newsom will clarify the plans for phase two on Thursday.
“We’ve been able to flatten in the curve in meaningful and significant ways,” said Newsom.
Newsom stressed that the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) program is designed for small businesses and not large ones with enormous cash flow.
Newsom said California has distributed more than $10 million in unemployment insurance so far. Newsom said 4.1 million Californians have filed for unemployment since March 12, noting that the bank partner who makes the debit cards ran out of plastic. Newsom said California will submit a revised budget on May 14.
On the topic of healthcare and PPE, Newsom said that 14.2 million surgical masks have been distributed so far, with 19.3 million in inventory that have come in over the past few days.
Newsom thanked San Diego County for offering advice on best practices to reopen beaches in places like Orange County.
Newsom announced 1,275 new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the total of cases to 56,212. Newsom said healthcare workers have tested just shy of 100,000 people in the last three days statewide.
Newsom also reported 63 new deaths.
“[These] families have radically changed,” said Newsom while extending sympathies to grieving families.
The number of PUI’s (persons under investigation) came down in Tuesday's report.
One journalist asked about a recent tweet from President Trump, which many believed to be a remark about California and New York:
“I don’t mind as an American doing more than other states,” said Newsom. “[...] California has historically been a donor state.”
Later Tuesday afternoon at approximately 2:15, Newsom hosted his second virtual roundtable with manufacturing workers and small business owners.