In Butte County, where fires killed at least three people, officials released an emergency measure on Thursday that allows restaurants to temporarily reopen for indoor dining.
“We are responding to what we believe to be an emergency in our county not only because of the wildfire displaced but also because of the air quality,” said Lisa Almaguer, communications manager for Butte County Public Health. “We do not recommend that this happen, but for now we are providing this allowance on a temporary basis.”
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The county – one of 33 on the state’s Level 1 checklist for COVID-19 – hasn’t waited for state permission to reopen restaurants, Almaguer said. Under current rules, Tier 1 counties with a generalized transmission risk can only allow alfresco dining.
Congressman James Gallagher,
who represents much of Butte County, said he encouraged restaurants to defy state guidelines because he believed poor air quality and pollution from fires in the North complex posed a risk to greater health than the threat of contracting the virus in the companies that follow. physical distance requirements.