Gov. Newsom calls out 'spring break'-sized crowds at local river amid COVID-19 pandemic

The governor expressed frustration during a press briefing Wednesday with Californians who still aren't social distancing amid the coronavirus pandemic.

ByAlix Martichoux KGO logo
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
Newsom calls out 'spring break'-sized crowds at NorCal river
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"It throws shivers up my spine," Newsom said of large crowds he saw recently at the American River near Sacramento.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Gov. Gavin Newsom expressed frustration in a press conference Wednesday with Californians who still aren't social distancing amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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He said crowds at the American River near Sacramento recently made it look like "spring break."

"We're not minimizing mixing. It throws shivers up my spine," said Newsom. "Here we are making all this progress, and it can be done away."

Gov. Newsom reported 11,645 new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours, but that number includes a lot of backlogged cases that haven't yet been reported. A data glitch on July 25 left 295,000 health records - many of them COVID-19 tests - unprocessed. The glitch led to an underreporting of new coronavirus cases.

He said the state's county watch list has been frozen as the state straightens out the inaccurate COVID-19 data. The governor said the watch list would be unfrozen at some point this week, once the backlog was fully cleared.

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ICU hospitalization numbers continue to trend down at 19% over the last 14 days. ICU admission rates were down 16%.

Newsom said the continued decrease in state hospitalizations was an encouraging sign, but Californians are still not doing enough to avoid mixing with people outside of their homes.

The governor said bending the curve is fundamental in the recovery of the state's economy.

Newsom also discussed the measures the state is working toward as the ending of the state legislature's session looms. He gave a review of the programs in the last few months, including Project Room Key, tax credits and funding for small businesses.

He emphasized that the state is still working toward implementing new aid for Californians and small businesses, including an extension to the moratorium on evictions and pushing the federal government to pay for the unemployment boost proposed by President Donald Trump.

VIDEO: Newsom discusses state's task force focusing on jobs, economic recovery

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