Marin Moves to Tier 2 of Economic Reopening

Marin County has successfully appealed to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to move into Tier 2 in the state’s COVID-19 response framework. Moving from Tier 1, or “widespread” COVID-19 community risk status, to the Tier 2 “substantial” risk category allows more businesses to reopen on Tuesday, September 15.

Marin County and state public health officials worked closely through the past week to ensure complete and accurate data was available to guide the final determination. The CDPH’s announcement is online

The primary changes allowed under the state order as Marin moves into Tier 2, or red status:

  • Retail establishments are allowed to open indoors at 50% capacity
  • Indoor malls are allowed to open at 50% capacity
  • Personal care services are allowed to open indoors (personal care services are defined as esthetics, skin care, cosmetology, electrology, nail services, body art professionals, tattoo parlors, piercing shops, and massage)
  • Museums are allowed to open indoors with 25% capacity
  • Places of worship are allowed to open with 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer
  • Movie theaters are allowed to open indoors with 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer
  • Gyms are allowed to open indoors with 10% capacity
  • Restaurants are allowed to open indoors with 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer

On August 28, the state introduced its Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a four-tier framework by which counties are measured for loosening and tightening restrictions on social activities and business operations. Marin was initially placed in Tier 1, or purple status.

Per state regulations, Tier 2 counties that maintain Tier 2 data for at least two consecutive weeks may reopen schools to classroom-based learning, with modification. For Marin, that could be as early as September 29.

A full list of changes to business sector guidelines will be updated to the Marin Recovers website soon. All open businesses must complete a COVID-19 Site-Specific Protection Plan prior to reopening.

Sectors of business can progressively open more operations with moves up the tier list if Marin continues to make progress against COVID-19. A county must spend at least 21 days in any tier before advancing to a less restrictive one. Most notably, counties will have to tighten back up if conditions worsen.

Elevated COVID-19 rates in low-income areas of Marin, while improved, remain a challenge. Testing and wider supports must continue in locations where residents are the most vulnerable, and progress in these communities may determine the pace of reopening. One factor for Marin to move Tier 3 status is the state’s new equity adjustment factor. CDPH compares a county’s COVID-19 percent positivity rate across low-income neighborhoods and more affluent neighborhoods. For Marin to move forward, the difference between those two figures must decrease.

Learn more.

City of Mill Valley COVID Updates | MarinRecovers Business Opening Info | County of Marin FAQs and COVID Data Center