Local restaurants brace for new state stay-at-home order

Order could impact Central Valley in coming days
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The new regional order means more restrictions on restaurants and bars. For many, it would mean stopping both indoor and outdoor services, and it could force others to close for good.

RELATED: Gov. Newsom announces new, regional stay-at-home order in California

Christmas decorations adorn the outdoor patio at Modernist in Fresno, but the holiday pop-up that was supposed to stay open for the season may be forced to close in the next few days.

"Any business owner is exhausted at this point," said Po Tsai with Modernist. "It's extremely disappointing news. Borderline soul-crushing."

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A surge in COVID-19 cases has forced Governor Newsom to further restrict restaurants, retail, and bars.



A surge in COVID-19 cases has forced Governor Newsom to further restrict restaurants, retail, and bars. On Thursday, he announced a new regional stay-at-home order that could go into effect in a few days, meaning many businesses will have to stop indoor and outdoor operations and potentially close.

"We can hope for the best, but prepare for the worst," Tsai said. "Maybe people will come support... but I expect it to be rough."

RELATED: Central Valley likely to be under Newsom's new stay-at-home order in next few days

The state's concern stems from the rise in hospitalizations. Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims says due to their resources, they will prioritize responding to criminal issues.

"We will not be enforcing the stay-at-home order...we were told by OES. They will continue to use state agencies to enforce this order."

Officials with Alcoholic Beverage Control will continue enforcing violations, saying "ABC prefers educational outreach and voluntary compliance over enforcement action, but it will take enforcement action for egregious violations, and for businesses that refuse to comply with state health orders."

Until then, Modernist owners say they will stay open for as long as they can, and try to think of a way to survive amid the state's orders.

In his announcement, Newsom said there would be consequences for counties that defy or don't enforce the restrictions, saying the state would redirect COVID-specific dollars to other counties.
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