BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Kern County Public Health Department officials say they have identified about 70 bar establishments that must close under Governor Gavin Newsom's order announced Sunday.
According to Newsom, bar establishments must close in Los Angeles, Fresno, Imperial, San Joaquin, Tulare, Kings and Kern County.
Newsom said the order was prompted because of the rise of COVID-19 cases and hospitalization rates across the state.
Bars were allowed to reopen in Kern County on June 5. Since then, local health officials say they have not traced any outbreaks to bars.
"There has been some attention nationwide about some types of businesses being responsible for outbreaks. Locally, we have not seen that in bars," Director of Public Health Matt Constantine said.
Public Health is currently waiting for guidance on how to enforce the governor's order.
Meantime, the state has issued some exceptions for bars that serve food.
Brewpubs, breweries, bars, and pubs that provide sit-down meals may still operate, so long as they follow dine-in restaurant guidance.
For establishments that don't currently offer sit-down meals, they can contract with another vendor to do so, according to state guidance.
In either case, alcoholic beverages can now only be served when a meal is ordered.