California’s Regional Stay At Home Order and CalOSHA’s Emergency COVID Regulations

On December  3, 2020, the California Department of Public Health issued a Regional Stay At Home Order (“Order”) triggered if intensive care unit (“ICU”) capacity drops below 15 percent in a given region. Under the Order, the state is divided into five regions:

  • Northern California Region: Del Norte, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Lassen, Mendocino, Modoc, Shasta Tehama, Trinity
  • Bay Area Region: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma
  • Greater Sacramento Region: Alpine, Amador, Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Sierra, Sutter, Yolo, Yuba
  • San Joaquin Valley Region: Calaveras, Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, San Benito, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare, Tuolumne
  • Southern California Region: Imperial, Inyo, Los Angeles, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura

If ICU capacity falls below 15 percent in any region the Order’s stay at home restrictions will take effect 24 hours later and will continue for a minimum period of three weeks and will continue until the four week projection of ICU capacity for the region is greater than or equal to 15 percent.

If the stay at home restrictions take effect:

The Regional Stay At Home Order Has Been Triggered in the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California Regions and Has Been Voluntarily Implemented by Five Counties in the Bay Area

On December 5, 2020, the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California regions triggered the Regional Stay At Home Order after their ICU capacities fell below 15 percent. The Order took effect in these regions effective on December 6, 2020 beginning at 11:59 p.m.

The day before, on December 4, 2020, five Bay Area counties voluntarily implemented the Regional Stay At Home Order although their ICU capacities had not fallen below the 15 percent state mandated threshold. Contra Costa, San Francisco and Santa Clara Counties voluntarily implemented the Order effective December 6, 2020 beginning at 10:00 p.m. Alameda County and the City of Berkeley voluntarily implemented the Order effective December 7, 2020 beginning at 12:01 a.m. And Marin County will voluntarily implement the Order effective December 8, 2020 beginning at 12:00 p.m.

Construction Continues to Be Deemed a “Critical Infrastructure” Even if the Regional Stay At Home Order is Triggered

Construction continues to be deemed a “Critical Infrastructure” and may continue even if the Regional Stay At Home Order is triggered. Those involved in construction are encouraged to follow the state’s guidance for the construction industry and to plan and post the state’s checklist for the construction industry.

Remember to check in the jurisdictions where you are working, however, because counties and cities may implement more stringent requirements than those of the state.

CalOSHA Emergency Regulation for COVID-19 Prevention Approved and Effective Immediately

On November 30, 2020, CalOSHA’s Emergency COVID Regulations  were approved and went into effect immediately.  Among other things, CalOSHA’s Emergency COVID Regulations require a written COVID-19 prevention program, requires that notice of potential COVID-19 exposure be given to employees who may have been exposed within one day of discover of the exposure, and requires employers to continue to pay employees who have been exposed to COVID-19 even if the employee has no paid time off available.

CalOSHA has posted a FAQ on the emergency regulations. My former colleague Jeanine DeBacker, an employment attorney, has also written a good summary of the emergency regulations on her blog the California Employment Law Blog.

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