July 29, 2020
  • Redwood City – The County of San Mateo has been added to the state’s monitoring list, due to an increase in the rate of COVID-19 cases in the county. If the county exceeds the state’s case rate threshold for three consecutive days, certain industries and activities will be required to cease operations unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up. 

    During the next three days, as long as it remains on the list, the county will be involved in active engagement with the state while the case rate is closely monitored. The county’s case rate today, based on a 14-day rolling average, is 110.4 positive cases per 100,000 of population. The state’s threshold for inclusion on the monitoring list is a case rate of 100. San Mateo County Health continues to partner closely with hospitals about their capacity and surge plans.

    The three-day clock begins today, which means additional restrictions would take effect at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 1. County officials believe that the local case rate will not decrease by Saturday and urge businesses and the community to prepare now for the additional restrictions.

    According to state guidelines, the following industries or activities must shut down, unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up:

    • Gyms and fitness centers
    • Places of worship and cultural ceremonies, like weddings and funerals
    • Offices for non-critical infrastructure sectors
    • Personal care services, like nail salons and body waxing
    • Hair salons and barbershops
    • Shopping malls

    Shops that offer tattoos, piercings, and electrolysis may not be operated outdoors and must close. The state provides guidance for personal care services to operate outside in the following document: 


    On July 17, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that schools in counties on the monitoring list will not be allowed to hold in-class instruction. However, elementary school districts may request a waiver of this prohibition from the health officer.   Counties must remain off the list for 14 consecutive days before schools (absent a waiver) can reopen for in-person learning. 

    “We’ve been anticipating being added to the monitoring list as our case rate hovers above the state’s target,” said San Mateo County Manager Mike Callagy. “It’s clear that COVID-19 continues to spread in our community and in the Bay Area. It’s vital that we all do everything we can — wearing face coverings, washing our hands, and avoiding gatherings — to slow and eventually stop the spread. These individual actions can make a huge difference.”

    The state has not offered guidelines for when restrictions might be lifted. Additional information from the state may be found here:


    Information about the County of San Mateo’s response to COVID-19 is at www.smcgov.org.