Despite San Mateo County opting to continue allowing several business establishments such as hair salons and restaurants to operate amid the rising number of coronavirus cases in the state, officials are urging residents from other counties to travel to the region for non-essential needs.
Traveling for food and salons
San Mato County Manager Mike Callagy said, “We are in a public health crisis with alarming rates of COVID-19 transmission.” He added that despite the support to local businesses, they urged people to refrain from traveling across county lines only for dining and hair salon firms.
California Governor Gavin Newsom recently announced a new stay-at-home order that would place counties in more restrictive lockdown protocols if they fall below 15% intensive care unit capacity. The new rules would also forcefully shut down several businesses for the time being.
San Mateo County Health Director Scott Morrow released a statement explaining why the area did not follow the new guidance. One of the factors he outlined was the statistics of the coronavirus pandemic in the region lacked data.
Morrow said, “I am aware of no data that some of the business activities on which even greater restrictions are being put into place with this new order are the major drivers of transmission.” He added the increased restrictions would force people and activities indoor, resulting in more transmission of the coronavirus infection.
Due to being surrounded by several other counties, San Mateo has seen a sharp increase in the number of visitors traveling into its borders. On Sunday, the Serramonte Center in Daly City was filled with shoppers who were trying to get out as much as they could, said one resident from San Francisco, the San Francisco Gate reported.
Additionally, San Mateo County Supervisor David Canepa is among those that is against people going out to travel to the region for non-essential needs. He said, “So my plea, my begging is for those people outside of San Mateo County, please respect our county and don’t come to our county to shop or use restaurants.”
Several counties that are under the new stay-at-home order that Newsom placed are also discouraging their residents from traveling outside except when needed.