Clovis Businesses Reopen Under Red Tier

Photo taken next to Sassano’s Mens Wear looking south towards Fifth and Pollasky in Old Town Clovis. (CR Photo)

California announced that Fresno County is elevating into the red tier of the color-coded COVID-19 state rankings, thus relaxing restrictions on businesses in the City of Clovis.

This will be effective Wednesday, March 31, 2021.

Although more activities are allowed under the new tier, the Fresno County Department of Public Health (FCDPH) reminds people that indoor activities provide a much higher risk than outdoor activities.

David Luchini, assistant director of FCDPH, says that people should continue to perform safety precautions like maintaining social distancing, getting vaccinated, socially distancing and masking up.

“Continue to keep yourself, your family, your friends and your neighbors safe,” Luchini said. “By continuing to work together, we will advance further into lower tiers of the Blueprint for a Safer Economy and open up more businesses and recreational activities.”

Businesses opening-up

Wednesday’s move allows for Clovis restaurants and fitness gyms to legally operate indoors at a limited capacity and will enable businesses that have been doing so to expand.

Restaurants are now allowed to open indoors with a maximum capacity of 25% or 100 patrons, whichever comes first. Until Wednesday, restaurants were limited to take-out, delivery and outdooring dining only.

And for fitness gyms, they will have a maximum capacity of 10%. All fitness gyms and health centers were initially barred from indoor operations.

The latest updates on businesses within Fresno County on Tuesday, March 30, 2021. (Courtesy Fresno County Department of Public Health.

Many restaurants and gyms were already operating in a limited capacity due to a lack of enforcement of restrictions.

In the case of gyms, various GB3 locations have been open since December, despite restrictions.

Now open, these businesses will still have to make proper modifications to comply with the capacity restrictions. These modifications still include masking wear and social distancing by both staff and customers.

Various entertainment venues will also have indoor restrictions lifted, including museums, zoos and movie theaters. The maximum capacity for these businesses will also be 25%.

Shopping centers (malls, destination centers, swap meets) will now move to 50% maximum capacity, with common areas remaining closed. Restaurants within the shopping centers will have to abide by restaurant restrictions.

Under updated restrictions, bars that don’t serve food will continue to remain closed.

What’s next

According to the FCDPH, the numbers for positivity rate, new COVID-19 positive case per day per 100,000 population, and health equity metric have dropped in the last week.

Positivity rate and health equity metric emerged into the moderate range with 3.8% and 4.3%, while the new positive cases are in the substantial rate at 8.2%.

With numbers trending in the right direction, Fresno County still has substantial work to be done if it wants to move into the orange (moderate) tier 3.

The new daily COVID-19 case rate needs to be below 4% per day per 100,000 citizens and the positivity rate lower than 5%

In Fresno County, as of March 29, the total number of cases is at 99,004, total deaths are at 1,592, people currently hospitalized are at 144 and tests received and processed are 1,073,510.

According to the L.A. Times, 384,921 doses of the vaccine have been administered, totaling 39,352 per 100,000 residents. 

Anthony De Leon is a journalist who started his career in 2017, covering sports for the Fresno City College Rampage, earning his Associate Degree in the process. He then moved on to Fresno State, working for The Collegian serving as Sports Editor, Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in print journalism. In August, he will begin attending Reynold’s School of Journalism Master’s program at the University of Nevada, Reno.