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Mayors’ Letter Seeks Re-Opening Strategy

The mayors of seven Stanislaus County cities – including Oakdale and Riverbank – have put together a joint letter asking Governor Gavin Newsom to let them re-open the county.

“As Mayors of Stanislaus County, we are requesting that you pursue an aggressive strategy for reopening our County for business,” the letter states. “One size does not fit all. A reopening process that may fit, and make sense, for the Los Angeles and our neighboring Bay Area regions does not work for our County.”

Suggested action, as requested by the mayors, is that the governor adopt a strategy similar to that of the White House Coronavirus Task Force plan that allows regions within the state – as across the country – to begin loosening up the “Stay at Home” mandate.

“Along with us Mayors, many of our citizens and businesses have been quite receptive to the reopening guidelines suggested by the Federal Government,” noted the letter.

That said, they indicated that the initial reopening phase would still include the “proper social distancing, continued emphasis on frequent hand washing, retained isolation of at risk groups” and more. Face coverings would also still be required when entering businesses, group gatherings would be limited to no more than 50 people and there would not be any sports gatherings with spectators allowed.

The goal, mayors said, is to start returning the region to ‘normal’ – as much as possible with “an immediate, aggressive, and balanced, reopening of businesses in our County.”

The letter was sent to Governor Gavin Newsom along with several area legislators, the Stanislaus County Public Health Officer and Stanislaus County Board of Supervisor chairperson Kristin Olsen.

Signing off on the letter were the mayors of Ceres, Hughson, Modesto, Oakdale, Riverbank, Turlock and Waterford. Other incorporated cities in the county are Patterson and Newman.