This Wednesday, May 6th, Governor Gavin Newsom led his daily COVID-19 update. Today’s press conference included updates on new COVID-19 testing sites, workplace health & safety protections, and the reopening of certain public spaces.
COVID-19 Testing Locator Website
Governor Newsom announced the creation of a new website to locate COVID-19 testing sites across California with the ability to access testing results in real time. The locator can be found at https://covid19.ca.gov/. California is averaging 25,000 tests a day with 800,000 Californians being tested so far.
Workplace Health & Safety Benefits
A week ago Governor Newsom made the announcement that small companies and large companies alike would qualify for paid sick leave through the CARES act; public safety employees were not part of that original package. Today, Governor Newsom signed an executive order qualifying police officers, firefighters, nurses, peace officers, first responders, and other sectors to receive workers’ compensation if COVID-19 was contracted within the last two months of reporting to work.
Transitioning into “Phase Two”: Guidelines Issued as Early as Tomorrow
Governor Newsom announced that the guidelines for the transition into phase two of reopening the economy will be released as early as tomorrow. As it relates to industries that will be allowed to reopen, manufacturing and retail spaces will be included in the first set of the transition.
PPE equipment is critical for reopening the economy until there is a vaccine, thus the administration has secured a direct supply chain of PPE equipment to prepare for this weekend’s reopenings. The majority of these supply chain contracts have not been made public because of complicated legal implications, the Governor has asked his administration to release these contracts as soon as possible to maintain transparency.
In light of a lawsuit filed by Orange County to Governor Newsom, both parties have collaborated on a solution and Orange County beaches will begin reopening without penalties.
In the last portion of today’s hearing, a reporter asked Governor Newsom if he recommends that legislators do not move forward with their bills that are not related to COVID-19. The Governor responded with the reminder that each branch of government has the sovereign ability to make their own decisions, but that he will ask the legislature for consent on a vaping tax code that will be introduced with the May 14th budget revision.