Mayor London Breed announced Wednesday that up to 95% of retail businesses should be able to reopen for limited curbside service starting on Monday, May 18. Many warehouses and factories should also be able to resume operations.
Department of Public Health Director Dr. Grant Colfax said the decision to allow more businesses to reopen was made because of the city’s success in flattening the curve of coronavirus infections.
“San Francisco’s mortality rate to COVID-19 is four times less than that of Los Angeles, and a remarkable 35 times less than New York City’s. The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 is staying flat,” Colfax said. He warned that a sudden spike in those numbers before Monday could force the city to delay the partial reopening.
Only retail businesses that face the street will be allowed to offer curbside service. Malls will remain closed. The number of staff allowed to return to work will be based on the size of the building the business operates in to ensure proper social distancing. All workers will be required to wear face coverings. The city will release details of those requirements on Thursday.
Breed warned that the city faces a $250 million deficit in the fiscal year ending in June and as much as $1.5 billion in the coming fiscal year.
“The city has put away about $800 million in reserve, but there’s also limitations as to how that money can be allocated,” Breed said. “And we also have to be very cautious. So what that is going to mean is hard decisions, hard cuts, impacts on services.” The mayor said she will announce a modified budget plan to city department heads next week.
Other updates from today’s press conference:
- Breed announces the partial reopening plan. (1:26)
- Breed said she hoped to increase the city’s coronavirus testing capacity from 800 to 1,600 tests per day by next week. (5:27)
- Breed warned residents they must maintain social distancing to avoid a spike in cases. (7:00)
- The mayor warned of a severe budget shortfall. (7:57)
- Dr. Colfax shared details on the reopening plan. (25:00)
A segment from our radio show, “Civic.” Mayor’s Press Conferences Listen day of the event at 7 p.m. on 102.5 FM in San Francisco.