Get ready, we’re covering California’s stages of modified and partial reopening compared to San Luis Obispo County’s START Guide, what it all means, which one are we currently following and more. Keep reading, we’ll break it all down for you.

Quick recap, currently as of May 7, 2020:

  • The Governor’s announcement that the State will move into “early Stage two” of its Pandemic Roadmap DOES NOT MEAN our County will move into Phase 1 of our START Guide.
  • The County does not have the authority to implement the START Guide, as we are still under the State’s order.
  • Along with the County and regional partners, we will continue to advocate and plan for more local control
  • START Guide will be adapted based on feedback that aligns with the data and public health guidance, as promised
  • Based on the Governor’s briefing on May 7th, we are in the first part of the State’s Stage 2.

Which reopening guide are we currently following?

Based on the current shelter order, the state’s guidelines are the umbrella – a county can have more strict rules but everyone in the state has to at least follow the State’s shelter order. You can read the details of the State’s order here. 

Some communities and elected officials – including some in San Luis Obispo County – have asked the Governor to allow the county to roll out their own plan because they have been able to flatten the curve more quickly than other areas and are prepared to move forward. As of May 11th, all counties are still required to follow the State’s shelter order.

California’s guide to reopening:

On April 28, the State shared its roadmap to modify the stay at home order which outlines four stages of reopening and alludes to some measure of local authority. While it did not include dates, the Governor did share a broad-strokes overview of areas of the economy that might reopen more quickly and those that are higher risk and will reopen more slowly. Dr. Sonia Angell, the State’s head of public health, said that county elected and public health officials will be able to submit their own “readiness plans” for keeping residents safe and preventing the spread of the virus.

The Governor has released a “report card” to help determine whether counties are ready to reopen. He also issued a new Executive Order on Friday, May 8 allowing retail businesses to open through curbside pickup and delivery (no in-store shopping) and for the supply chains that support retail (think manufacturing and warehouses) to open with modifications.

San Luis Obispo’s guide to reopening:

As mentioned above, the county is still required right now to follow the state’s lead on the shelter order. They have submitted a reopening framework to the Governor. That framework is known as the START Guide and includes:

  • A three-phased plan to open slowly and systematically, with different recommendations under each phase
  • A list of specific health criteria for moving forward and potentially backward as things change
  • Suggested strategies for protecting the public and worker health while gradually reopening your business (see the breakdowns by industry below)
  • An assessment of our county’s readiness to Meet California’s Six Indicators for Modifying the Stay at Home Order

Currently, San Luis Obispo County has pivoted to use the State’s Resilience Roadmap to ensure that we can adapt and reopen together as quickly and safely as possible under the State’s order.  The State determines when and how each county may reopen based on a county’s ability to meet the State’s criteria.  The State has said that some counties may reopen faster if they are able to show greater progress.

Counties that have met the readiness criteria prescribed by the California Department of Public Health can open additional businesses as outlined on the County Variance page. On May 8, SLO County Health Officer, Dr. Borenstein submitted an attestation document outlining SLO County readiness to open additional businesses within Stage 2.

For more information click here. 

The similarities and differences between California’s Guide and San Luis Obispo County’s guide to reopening:

Additional details, sector-by-sector guidelines as of 2 p.m. on May 7:

Visit our COVID-19 page to stay up to date on resources for your business. As always, if you have any questions or if there’s anything the Atascadero Chamber can do to support you or your business, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We are all stronger supporting OUR community together.

Thank you to the SLO Chamber for originally sharing this information. You can check out their original post here.