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Gov. Gavin Newsom Says NorCal Restaurants That Open Dining Rooms ‘Are Making a Big Mistake’

Also: SF food delivery workers only make about $500 a week, and more news to start your day

Late Night with Seth Meyers - Season 7
Gov Gavin Newsom might be all smiles here, but he gave a frowny face to NorCal restaurants that opened their dining rooms this week
Photo by: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Gov. Gavin Newsom called out California restaurants that have reopened despite the state’s shelter-in-place order.

Governor Gavin Newsom made it clear Monday that restaurant dining rooms aren't part of the state’s first phase of business reopenings, which kicks in as soon as Friday. But the news that some businesses could reopen was apparently enough to convince restaurants in a few Northern California cities to reopen, whether Newsom likes it or not — a decision that the Governor decried on Tuesday, saying “they are making a big mistake. They are putting their public at risk.”

The East Bay Times reports that Newsom’s remarks were directed at Yuba and Sutter counties. On Friday, the public health officer for both, Dr. Phuong Luu, released a statement that said that restaurants could reopen for dine-in service “as long as appropriate business modifications are made to adhere to social distancing and other tenets of combating COVID-19.” However, Newsom said Tuesday that Luu’s move is premature, and that Yuba and Sutter counties “are putting our progress at risk.”

Meanwhile, Napa County‘s health officer, Dr. Karen Relucio, has released no such permission to reopen. Despite that, at least two restaurants in Napa reopened sit-down dining Monday, but one spot — Dickey’s Barbecue Pit — has already had its sit-down dining shut down by county health officials. (It remains open for takeout, however.)

A second restaurant, Fumé, tells the SF Chronicle that they have “yet to receive a visit from city or county officials, but figured at some point [they] would.” On the news of the shelter-in-place scofflaws, Napa Supervisor Brad Wagenknecht says, “I have seen some of our members in the community make themselves a criminal and not following the orders for the health of our community. And I have to express my disappointment in that.”

And in other news...

  • According to a UC Santa Cruz study commissioned by San Francisco’s Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO), food and grocery delivery workers in SF make about $500 per week, even though 71 percent work over 30 hours for that sum. A summary of the report is here, and the full report is here. [TechCrunch]
  • Members of the Gilroy community, many of whom say that don’t even eat pastries, opened their wallets to support long standing local business the Gilroy Donut House after tragedy struck. [East Bay Times]
  • Berkeley’s Donkey and Goat winery will be open for snack and bottle drive through service this weekend only, in an event they’re calling their “summer release pick-up pop-up.” RSVPs are requested here. [KRON 4]
  • San Jose-based brewery Gordon Biersch is putting their beers in cans for the first time ever. “The beer coming out of these cans is indistinguishable from beer in a bottle,” said co-founder Dan Gordon, who for years resisted the move to cans. “I had to eat my words,” he says. [San Jose Mercury News]
  • Impossible Foods, the Bay Area-based faux meat company, is reportedly looking for even more funding after closing a $500 million round in March. Unnamed sources say that the “uncertain business environment caused by the Covid-19 pandemic” is behind the company’s latest hunt for cash. [Bloomberg]
  • Twelve trucks with San Francisco street food outfit Off the Grid fed SF General workers 3,200 meals Tuesday, all paid for by the ZSFG COVID-19 Fund. [SFist]