New tiered system emphasizes slower reopening approach

New tiered system emphasizes slower reopening approach

Orange County is on track to move into the next tier of the state’s monitoring system next week, which could result in fewer business restrictions and could enable in-person teaching later in the month.

The state unveiled it’s new color-coded, four-tiered monitoring system on Friday, with Orange County and 37 other state counties falling into the most restrictive purple category.

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Counties are placed in this tier if they have more than seven new daily cases per 100,000 residents, and a testing percentage above 8%.

To enter into the red tier, counties must have four to seven daily new cases and a positive test rate between 5% and 8%.

Over the past week, Orange County had about 5.6 new daily cases per 100,000 residents and a 5% testing percentage. County health officials indicated OC is “on track to enter Red Tier on Sept. 8” when the state will assess counties’ numbers for the first time.

“Providing we meet Red Tier metrics at that time, there will be a 14-day wait for all K-12 schools to be eligible for reopening, which could happen on Sept. 22,” the OC Health Care Agency said Monday evening via Twitter.

Entering the red tier will also lead to increased capacity for businesses, such as restaurants, malls and salons.

Go here for more updates on how OC companies are responding to coronavirus.