On Friday, the Colusa County Board of Supervisors held a special meeting to establish a Phased Opening Plan, which was then submitted to the California Department of Health for approval.
According to a release by the county, the board also included a Variance request outlining the county’s readiness to proceed with this plan at an accelerated pace.
“Both the proposed plan and Variance request have advanced in the review and approval process, and we expect a final response in the coming days,” read a statement released by the County late Monday night.
The four phase plan will move forward in two week intervals, should there be no “significant increase in cases” within the county over the course of that time.
“This plan is a phased plan that will allow for a slow and steady pace to return our community to normal operations,” read a statement in the Colusa County Phased Opening Plan. “The phased plan is necessary to continue to limit the spread of COVID-19 disease.”
With the expiration of the shelter-in-place order on Friday night, the county has now moved into Phase 2A of the Phased Opening Plan.
This phase calls for continued social distancing of at least six feet when in public. Face coverings are recommended in public as well, but are not required.
Social gathering with a maximum of ten people are now allowed but non-essential travel is still discouraged.
Outdoor recreation, including golf courses and the East Park Reservoir, have now been allowed to reopen during this phase as well.
Denise Carter, Colusa County Board of Supervisors chairperson, said the most significant change made to the plan during Friday’s meeting was that Phase 2A and 2B can now be opened at the same time.
Once the County gets the green light from the state, approving their Phased Opening Plan, local officials will be able to expand reopening efforts by opening Phase 2B as well.
“Restaurants will be able to open to dine in at half capacity, gyms and churches may open with appropriate physical distancing and hygiene protocols,” said Carter.
Other congregate sites, such as schools, organized youth activities and theaters, will also be allowed to reopen with appropriate physical distancing and hygiene protocols.
Phase 2B allows for social gatherings of no more than 25 people and okays recreational travel as well.
“If all goes well during the following two weeks, we may move to Phase 3,” said Carter.
Phase 3 of the county’s Phased Opening Plan will allow for bars to reopen with appropriate physical distancing and diminished occupancy. Restaurants will be allowed to resume normal business and capacities and physical distancing restrictions will be removed from worksites, businesses and gyms.
Senior residential and healthcare facilities will also be able to use relaxed visitation procedures when this phase goes into effect.
Although the county is moving forward with reopening plans, Carter said hair salons, barbers, bars, dental and medical offices are still directed by the State Licensing Board and National Associations for guidelines and timelines to reopen.
Phase 4 of the plan will remove physical distancing restrictions from worksites, businesses schools and congregate venues, allowing bars, restaurants, senior residential and healthcare facilities and gyms to resume normal business operations and capacities.
Community and public pools will also be allowed to reopen at this time.
According to the plan, should an increase in spread of illness be significant, the public will be asked to return to stricter protocols.
“Community support and personal responsibility is critical for this plan to work,” read a statement in the plan. “We ask that each resident of Colusa County make informed decisions to keep yourself and your family healthy throughout the duration of this pandemic.”
As of Tuesday, officials from the Colusa County Health Department reported that the total confirmed COVID-19 cases remains at three within the county, with no new cases reported in over a month. To date, there have been 146 negative test results confirmed.
Updated information about the coronavirus in Colusa County will be posted at www.countyofcolusa.org/99/Public-Health as it becomes available.