The Governor has recently announced a partial reopening for many California businesses. The general stay-at-home order is rescinded, and most California counties are back in the “purple” tier, allowing personal services like barbershops and hair salons to reopen, while allowing restaurants to provide outdoor dining for their customers.
These steps are welcomed, but I have concerns about how these decisions are made and what data is being used. We appear to be lurching from one plan to another, causing widespread confusion and severe economic distress. Contradictory, constantly changing regulations that seem to have no scientific basis cause a loss of public confidence and hamper the fight against COVID. For example, restaurants had to close despite a lack of evidence that outside dining was spreading the disease in any significant way, but now they can reopen. What is the basis for these decisions, where is the data?
I have consistently called for transparency and have asked the Governor to give people access to the information and analysis used in making these decisions. Statements from the administration that the data and modeling are too complicated for public dissemination simply have no place in a democratic republic. With my colleagues, I have called on legislative leadership for a joint, bipartisan committee to hold oversight hearings about these issues. To view the letter, please visit: https://bit.ly/3t0vMjd
Without transparency, the public will increasingly reject guidelines imposed by Sacramento aimed at combating the pandemic. A simple solution would be for the Assembly and Senate to hold bipartisan oversight hearings so these issues can be fully aired, and transparency for the public can be restored.
We must have a clear roadmap showing how California will emerge from the pandemic, and public trust is essential. The people have a right to know.