Coronavirus

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Dr. Warren Rehwaldt told the Del Norte County Board of Supervisors Tuesday he is working on new plans in the wake of the governor and the state Health Department allowing another variance for counties to move more quickly into Stage 3 reopening.

California has a four stage plan for reopening the economy following closures imposed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Information about what is called the Road to Recovery (R2R) is available online at https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap/.

Rehwaldt said the new state list of what may be allowed in Stage 3 is fairly long. It includes hotels, RV rentals, campgrounds, outdoor recreational areas, galleries, museums, zoos, family entertainment centers, bowling alleys, bars, wineries and fitness centers.

However, Rehwaldt said he is not keen on authorizing them all to open immediately and has not finalized a new plan.

“I think it would be reckless to introduce everything at once,” he said. “We’re still trying to measure (the impact of) everything that opened in Stage 2, including retail stores, barber shops, salons and places of worship. It will take some time to see that happen.”

Rehwaldt said the county Public Health Department is trying to handle reopening in a safe way that doesn’t push the envelope too far.

“I don’t have anything definitive to share today. We need to work a few more days to develop something for the public and board of supervisors’ consumption later this week,” Rehwaldt said.

Rehwaldt said the plan will likely involve first opening places that will help the economy.

“So, it would be useful to open some of our rentals, at full or 50 percent, we’re still trying to figure out the best strategy. I’m comfortable with low risk businesses, like museums and galleries. They’re low traffic,” Rehwaldt said, pointing toward Ocean World and the Mammal Recovery Center.

He said he considers RV parks suitable for a low risk category, saying tourists could rent a spot and still adhere to social distancing guidelines. However, he placed bars and gyms in a high-risk category.

Meanwhile, Rehwaldt said the county public health website has been updated.

The website (http://www.co.del-norte.ca.us/covid19) as of 5 p.m. June 10, shows out of 1,758 tests administered, there have been 47 confirmed cases in Del Norte County, with no new, no active cases and no hospitalizations. It also breaks down the demographics of the confirmed cases:

24% , ages 0-17

62%, ages 18-49

10%, ages 50-64

4%, ages 65 or older

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