California Governor Gavin Newsom orders closure of Cardrooms in 19 counties

California Governor Gavin Newsom orders closure of Cardrooms in 19 counties

In response to emergence of thousands of new COVID-19 cases, California Governor Gavin Newsom ordered certain businesses, including cardrooms, to temporarily close down indoor operations in several counties of the country’s most populous state.

The new order requiring cardrooms and other business to close down indoor operations became effective immediately in a total of 19 counties as California health authorities struggle to control the spread of the deadly corona virus pandemic that has already claimed nearly 550,000 lives across the world.

The governor said he expected the new order to last at least for three weeks. It means cardrooms, which were earlier forced to close in mid of March when the governor issued an emergency “stay-at-home” order to help curb the deadly corona virus pandemic, will remain closed again for at least three weeks.

The nineteen counties where the new order took effect starting Wednesday are: Tulare, Contra Costa, Santa Clara, Solano, Stanislaus, Tulare, Fresno, Glenn, Imperial, Kern, Kings, Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Merced, Orange, San Joaquin, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and Ventura. Among the gaming properties that announced their closures in wake of the new order included Gardenia-based Hustler Casino and Bell Gardens-based Bicycle Casino.

Newsom stressed that the government was doing everything that it could do to focus on certain sectors of its economy, where that spread of the deadly virus can be potentially more concentrated and try to mitigate its effect. While cardrooms in the aforementioned counties will remain closed for at least three months to come, the governor’s order doesn’t affect the tribal casinos.

Referring to tribal gaming properties, Newsom said, “We are working very collaboratively as we did with the original stay at home order and working with the guidelines that we put forth to allow them to make modifications to their operations so they could reopen in certain counties in the state of California.”

It may be noted here that the tribal casinos across California started resuming operations from mid of May, going against the governor’s wishes as they are sovereign entities and are not required to abide by the state’s orders.

The order requiring cardrooms and other business to close indoor operations in select counties comes as California reported more than 8,100 new cases of COVID-19 infections on Tuesday this week. The figure is significantly higher than Monday’s count of 1,000. Since March, the state has reported nearly 239,000 cases, of which more than 15,000 have been reported within this week.