SMC indoor barbershops, malls can reopen Monday

in Community/Featured

Starting Monday, Aug. 31, San Mateo County hair salons and barbershops will be allowed to operate indoors, and retail and shopping malls in the county can open at a maximum 25 percent capacity, based upon Gov. Gavin Newsom’s new color-coded COVID-19 reopening system.

The color-coded system ranks counties based on COVID-19 case counts and positivity rate.

San Mateo County is currently in the most concerning purple tier denoting a “widespread” county risk level. Counties in this tier have more than seven new daily cases per 100,000 residents and more than 8 percent positive tests. San Mateo County currently has 8.6 new positive cases per 100,000 residents and a 4.8 percent positivity rate, the state says.

“Although San Mateo County’s positivity rate falls in the ‘moderate’ risk level, the stricter tier takes precedence,” county officials said.

At a minimum, counties must remain in a tier for at least three weeks before moving to a new tier.

Being in the purple tier keeps bars, concert venues, and piercing shops closed, among other activities. Click here and type in San Mateo County and scroll down to see guidance on businesses can can open or remain closed.

Local officials still dispute being placed on the state monitoring list last month. County Manager Mike Callagy said the loosened restrictions are a good sign.

“We have repeatedly said that the spread of the virus in our community is not linked to businesses like hair salons and we could see the economic hardship on those businesses that couldn’t modify to operate outdoors,” Callagy said in a statement. “We are very happy to see them reopen and with the effort of our residents to wear face coverings and avoid large gatherings, we hope to soon move to the next tier and loosen even more restrictions.”