Humboldt County was moved into the “minimal” COVID risk level under the state's four-tiered system, with a test positivity rate of 1.5 percent and 2 cases per 100,000 individuals, according to the latest data.
The statewide level is 7.1 cases per 100,000 and a test positivity rate of 3.2 percent.
Under the lowest risk category, most indoor businesses can reopen but the county can put further restrictions in place, according to the state. Only six other counties in California are in the minimal tier. Read more about what it means here
The move down a notch from the "moderate" level comes as the state began requiring counties to meet a new "equity metric" or "demonstrate targeted investments to eliminate disparities in levels of COVID-19 transmission, depending on its size," under the state's Blueprint for a Safer Economy.
In essence, counties need to close or work to address how COVID-19 cases have a greater impact certain communities, including lower income residents who are more likely to be on frontline jobs and persons of color.
According to the Times-Standard
, Mark Ghaly, the secretary of California Health and Human Services, told the paper the county's equity metric is what allowed for the new designation.
The county said in an email sent out earlier today that more information will be released Wednesday regarding local COVID-19 data that resulted in the minimal ranking.