LA County moves a step closer to ‘yellow’ tier, which would allow more business openings

Los Angeles County’s daily rate of new COVID-19 cases fell low enough today to qualify for a move to the least restrictive yellow tier of the state’s economic-reopening blueprint, but the county must meet the threshold for another week before it can actually allow more capacity at businesses and event venues.

For now, the county remains in the orange tier of the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, which governs restrictions on businesses and other activities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to statistics released by the state every Tuesday, the county’s adjusted seven-day average rate of daily new COVID-19 infections fell to 1.9 per 100,000 residents. Moving to the yellow tier requires a rate of less than 2 per 100,000.

If the county keeps the rate below 2 for another week, it will officially advance to the yellow tier. The state requires counties to meet all thresholds for two consecutive weeks before advancing to a less-restrictive tier in the blueprint.

The county has met the other thresholds required for moving to the yellow tier for several weeks—its seven-day average testing-positivity rate is now 0.9%, and the positivity rate in low-income, hard-hit communities is 1.0%.

Moving to the yellow tier would mean further easing of capacity restrictions at businesses, gatherings and events, both indoors and outdoors.

Fitness centers, cardrooms, wineries and breweries, for instance, would be permitted to increase indoor capacity to 50%, up from the current 25%; bars would be able to open indoors at 25% of capacity; outdoor venues such as Dodger Stadium could increase capacity to 67%, up from the current 33%; and amusement parks could allow 35% of capacity, up from 25%.

As of Tuesday, only four of the state’s 58 counties were in the yellow tier: Alpine, Mendocino, Sierra and Lassen. The bulk of the state, including all of Southern California, is in the orange tier.

 

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