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Total coronavirus cases:
• 25,793 in California, including 782 deaths.
• 5,421 in the Bay Area, including 149 deaths.
• 610,774 in the U.S., including 26,119 deaths. The five states with the highest death tolls are New York with 10,842; New Jersey with 2,805; Michigan with 1,768; Louisiana with 1,013; and Massachusetts with 957. Click here to see a U.S. map with state-by-state death tolls and coronavirus case counts.
• More than 2 million in the world, with more than 129,000 deaths. More than 487,000 people have recovered.
Coronavirus cases by city: For detailed maps and new city-by-city Bay Area data, check out The Chronicle’s Coronavirus Tracker. To get regular updates on our coverage, sign up for our coronavirus newsletter.
Latest developments from today:
10:43 a.m. State lawmaker wants Newsom to stop gun sales during coronavirus outbreak: A state legislator is asking Gov. Gavin Newsom to halt sales of firearms and ammunition throughout the state, except to law enforcement officers. Some California counties already have closed gun shops during the coronavirus pandemic, even as gun dealers report a surge in customers nationwide. Read the full story here.
10:35 a.m. Speaker Pelosi blasts Trump over stimulus check signature: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi jumped on news accounts reporting that stimulus checks could be delayed so President Trump’s signature can be attached as “another shameful example” of his failure to treat the coronavirus crisis seriously. Treasury Department officials have denied any delay. Pelosi nonetheless tweeted, “Delaying direct payments to vulnerable families just to print his name on the check is another shameful example of President Trump’s catastrophic failure to treat this crisis with the urgency it demands.”
10:23 a.m.:New York governor orders wearing of masks: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that New Yorkers will be required to wear masks or face coverings when they are in “any situation where they cannot maintain social distancing” of six feet, including on public transit and sidewalks.
10:18 a.m. Getting your stimulus money: The IRS opened a web portal where people can enter their bank account information to get direct deposit of their stimulus payment rather than waiting for a paper check. People whose bank accounts are already on file from previous tax returns don’t need to bother with the portal, and many have already received their payments. Learn how to get your stimulus check if the IRS doesn’t have your bank account number.
10:10 a.m. Laguna Honda confirms another staff member case: One more person at Laguna Honda Hospital, a staff member, has tested positive for COVID-19, San Francisco city officials announced. Officials have said they expect more cases among staffers and residents. Four residents have tested positive. Of the staff members infected, 11 were in patient-care positions.
9:59 a.m. San Francisco announces dramatic expansion of contact tracing: San Francisco will dramatically expand its efforts on coronavirus contact tracing through use of “innovative” technology, Mayor London Breed and health officials announced Wednesday. The program is a partnership between the city, UCSF and a software company that has been working with the CDC to digitize tracing and monitoring of people who may have been exposed. The program will identify people who have contacted someone testing positive for COVID-19, and officials then will notify those people. The program, now in a testing phase, will be voluntary and confidential, city officials said. “We need to look ahead and plan for how we will eventually go about easing the Stay Home Order while continuing to protect public health,” Breed said in a statement. “When the time comes to make changes to the Order, we need this contact tracing program in place so that we’re equipped to respond to new cases and keep the virus from spreading out of control.”
9:21 a.m. Pandemic stalls Notre Dame’s reconstruction: The reconstruction of the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris has been suspended since mid-March because of the coronavirus, further imperiling the iconic church’s future after a blaze last year ripped through it, CNN reports. Wednesday marked the one-year anniversary of the fire, which authorities believe may have been ignited by a cigarette or electrical malfunction.
9:15 a.m. Caltrans allows overweight trucks to speed delivery of essential goods: Caltrans is issuing overweight permits to trucks carrying emergency medical supplies and other essential goods to speed their availability during the coronavirus pandemic. The permits apply to virus treatment and detection materials, masks, gloves and sanitizer, as well as food, fuel and supplies to support temporary housing and quarantine facilities related to COVID-19. The permits allow trucks to carry 88,000 pounds instead of 80,000 on 10 major routes including Interstate 80 and Highway 101 in the Bay Area and I-5 and Highway 99 in the San Joaquin Valley. Caltrans Director Toks Omishakin said the “essential items will now reach their destinations more rapidly than they did before, at a time when people need them most.”
9:09 a.m. $20.9 billion in coronavirus loans for small California businesses: The Small Business Administration approved 54,922 emergency coronavirus loans worth close to $20.9 billion as of Tuesday, the federal agency said. California has an estimated 3.9 million small businesses in the state, meaning that only 1.4% of potentially eligible firms have sought and been approved for the loans. Congress made $349 billion in loans available for small businesses under the Payroll Protection Program, part of the $2 trillion Cares Act stimulus package.
9:04 a.m. San Francisco records two more coronavirus deaths as cases pass 1,000: Two more people in San Francisco have died of COVID-19, and 26 new cases have increased the city’s case number to 1,013, with 17 deaths recorded, according to the Department of Health.
8:59 a.m. CDC director diverges from Trump on WHO move: Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, lauded the work of the World Health Organization on Wednesday, calling it “a great partner for us.” He said the “analysis of what could have been done better and what we maybe did well” should wait “until once we get through this” outbreak. His comments on the “CBS This Morning” program were at odds with President Trump’s newly announced halt to U.S. funding for WHO due to what the president called mismanagement of the coronavirus outbreak by the internatinal body.
8:43 a.m. Detainees plead for virus protection: While U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has started to lower the number of detainees to reduce coronavirus risk, immigration jail detainees and their advocates say there’s not enough protective gear, cleaning supplies or space to allow for social distancing, the Associated Press reports. There are 72 detainees in 12 states who tested positive and hundreds of others under quarantine. Detainees in at least four states say they have been denied masks, even as the White House has urged face coverings in public.
8:22 a.m. One more Roosevelt sailor hospitalized, number of cases jumps: Another sailor from the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt was hospitalized Wednesday, the Navy announced, and the ship’s coronavirus cases rose to 615. Since the carrier docked in Guam, five sailors have been hospitalized, one died and another is in the ICU with breathing troubles. With 94 % of the crew tested, almost 4,000 have tested negative and slightly over 4,000 have been moved off the warship, either to Guam hotel rooms to quarantine, or in the case of infected sailors to recover on base. The Navy also announced that two of four sailors aboard the French aircraft carrier FS Charles de Gaulle tested positive for the coronavirus. The sailors are part of a military exchange program and are being treated by French military medical officials, the Navy said.
8:12 a.m. Military sees no quick exit from coronavirus footing: The Pentagon is bracing for a months-long struggle against the coronavirus and looking for novel ways to maintain a defensive crouch that sustains troops’ health without breaking their morale, the Associated Press reports. Contrasting with Trump administration talk of reopening the country as soon as May, military leaders are suggesting that this summer may be the best-case scenario of tiptoeing toward a return to normal activities.
8:01 a.m. Some states set up border checkpoints: States including Rhode Island, Florida and Texas have taken the extraordinary step of setting up checkpoints at their borders to stop out-of-staters who might be carrying the coronavirus, the Washington Post reports. Measures include state troopers requiring incoming travelers to sign forms promising to self-quarantine for 14 days; requiring them to provide a shelter location address; and advising them to be prepared for follow-up calls or public health officials’ visit.
7:49 a.m. 106-year-old British woman survives virus: A 106-year-old woman became Britain’s oldest known survivor of COVID-19 when she was released from a hospital Tuesday after three weeks, the Associated Press reports. “I feel very lucky that I’ve fought off this virus. I can’t wait to see my family,” Connie Titchen said, according to the report.
7:42 a.m. Wetlands around Bay Area still open for outdoor fix: With cascading closures of state and local parks, playgrounds and beaches squeezing outdoor enthusiasts to smaller and smaller footprints, Tom Stienstra reports that greater Bay Area wetlands and their trails still are open for nature enjoyment. More than 20 wetland marshes provide nesting and nursery habitat for resident waterfowl and shorebirds, and food and resting habitat for migrants, many within short range of Bay Area residents.
7:29 a.m. Nations around the world alarmed at Trump cut to WHO: Nations are reacting with alarm to President Trump’s announcement he is halting United States funding to the World Health Organization. Health experts warned the move could jeopardize global efforts to stop the coronavirus pandemic. The European Union said Wednesday that Trump has “no reason” to freeze the funding and called for promoting unity instead of division. Trump said the U.S. contribution was being suspended pending a review of WHO’s role “in severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus.”
7:20 a.m. Global coronavirus cases surpass 2 million: The number of people who have the coronavirus around the world reached 2,000,984 Wednesday morning, according to Johns Hopkins University tracking. To date, 128,071 people have died across the world. The United States has accounted for 609,696 cases and 26,059 deaths.
7:13 a.m. 26 new cases in San Mateo: Twenty-six additional people in San Mateo County have tested positive for the coronavirus, increasing the county’s cases to 747, health officials said. About 10% of people tested in the county — 7,163 — have tested positive, and 184 await test results. The county has 76 COVID-19 patients hospitalized, 22 of them in intensive care.
7:08 a.m. 3,000 infected in China while government kept mum: For six days after Chinese officials secretly determined they likely were facing a pandemic from a new coronavirus, more than 3,000 people were infected while the government stayed silent, according to documents obtained by the Associated Press and experts’ estimates. While China failed to warn the public, Wuhan at the epicenter of the disease hosted a mass banquet for tens of thousands of people, and millions began traveling through for Lunar New Year celebrations.
6:53 a.m. Homeless tents on S.F. streets flourish: Despite repeated concerns about coronavirus spread among the homeless, San Francisco has yet to order any of the city’s proliferating tent camps to abide by the 6-foot separation rule required by social distancing. A health department spokeswoman tells The Chronicle’s Phil Matier the city is following CDC guidelines stating that dispersing encampments is too great a health crisis during pandemics. Read Phil Matier’s story.
6:41 a.m. Emergency lights flash for health care heroes: Law enforcement and fire department vehicles with lights flashing lined the entrance to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose early Wednesday to welcome workers arriving at the hospital with cheers, in a scene captured on video by NBC Bay Area. Santa Clara County has the most coronavirus cases in the Bay Area.
6:33 a.m. Stocks swing down: The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 2% as new retail and manufacturing numbers Wednesday showed the coronavirus’s harrowing impact on the economy.
6:25 a.m. Crowdfunding a lifeline for some small businesses: At least half a million workers in the Bay Area are employed by small businesses, and many of those companies are now turning to their community to stay afloat during the coronavirus pandemic. Crowdfunding, once seen primarily as a way to get businesses off the ground, is becoming a way to seek financial help from the same customers who first made them popular. Read the story by The Chronicle’s Justin Phillips.
6:12 a.m. Bay Area health workers want coronavirus information: Frontline health workers want Bay Area hospitals to quickly tell them and test them when they have been exposed to the coronavirus. And they want enough protective equipment to stay safe. Read The Chronicle’s story from Mallory Moench about how hospitals treat those concerns, as California reports that 2,599 health workers statewide have been infected.
6:03 a.m. San Francisco Bay Ferry cuts back on midday trips: The Bay Ferry is cutting back on midday trips between San Francisco and the East Bay as of Wednesday, transit officials said. Departures to San Francisco will no longer be offered from Oakland and Alameda at 11:30 and 11:45 a.m. Departures from San Francisco to the East Bay at 2:30 and 2:45 p.m. will also be cut.
5:42 a.m. Coronavirus clobbers retail: Retail sales in the U.S. were down a record 8.7% in March from February, and 6.2% from a year ago as the coronavirus pandemic choked the economy, the Census Bureau reported Wednesday. Sales at food and beverage stores were up 28%, while clothing store sales dropped 51%.
5:39 a.m. All L.A. residents with symptoms can get same-day or next-day tests: Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced Tuesday that increased testing capacity means anyone with coronavirus symptoms can now book a same or next-day appointment, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Developments from April 14:
12:20 a.m. New Zealand prime minister will take pay cut amid coronavirus lockdown: Jacinda Ardern, prime minister of New Zealand, said in a news conference Wednesday that she and other government officials will take a 20 percent pay cut for the next six months. Ardern said the cuts apply to government ministers and public service chief executives. “We feel acutely the struggle that many New Zealanders are facing and so too do the people that I work with on a daily basis,” Ardern said in the live-streamed briefing. “While it in itself won’t shift the government’s overall fiscal position, it is about leadership. And I acknowledge my colleagues both in the executive and also the colleagues we work with in the public service for the decision that was taken today.” New Zealand introduced lockdown measures March 25 for at least four weeks. New Zealand has confirmed 1,386 cases of the virus and nine deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
11:55 p.m. J.C. Penney exploring bankruptcy amid pandemic, report says: Retailer J.C. Penney is exploring filing for bankruptcy protection with its stores temporarily closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters reports. The closure of its 850 department stores has led the company to furlough some employees and cut spending. J.C. Penney is contemplating filing for bankruptcy as a way to rework “unsustainable finances,” according to Reuters.
11:30 p.m. Bill Gates says that halting funding to WHO is ‘dangerous’: Bill Gates, the former chairman of Microsoft, reacted Tuesday night on Twitter to President Trump’s decision to halt U.S. funding to the World Health Organization. Gates’ tweet read: “Halting funding for the World Health Organization during a world health crisis is as dangerous as it sounds. Their work is slowing the spread of COVID-19 and if that work is stopped no other organization can replace them. The world needs @WHO now more than ever.” Trump said at a news conference Tuesday the U.S. will halt funding to the agency while reviewing its “mismanaging” of the coronavirus pandemic.
10:50 p.m. Airbnb announces commitments for $1 billion loan: Airbnb said Tuesday that it has secured commitments for a $1 billion loan as bookings worldwide plunge amid the coronavirus pandemic. Co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky said in a statement that “rather than merely hunkering down, the support we have received will allow Airbnb to continue moving forward as we invest in our community.” Airbnb also raised $1 billion last week reportedly from private equity investors. Last month, tech news website the Information reported the San Francisco home rental company would suspend marketing and freeze hiring for most jobs in order to save $800 million amid the downturn.
9:55 p.m. Oakland asks for input on ‘Slow Streets’ closures: Oakland officials are asking for community input on the next wave of street closures under the city’s “Slow Streets” plan. The city began “soft closures” of 4.5 miles of neighborhood streets last Saturday with signs, traffic cones and barriers, it said in a statement. Officials are asking residents to help select another 4-5 miles of streets for closures this Friday out of 11 miles identified as candidates. Residents are asked to provide feedback online or by contacting OAK311. Officials have said the program will close 74 miles of streets designated as existing or proposed bike routes to most through traffic. A city statement Tuesday said the goal “is to make neighborhood streets safer to walk and bicycle, creating wider spaces than our current sidewalks allow” during the stay-at-home orders resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.
8:51 p.m. Trump’s name to be printed on stimulus checks, report says: President Trump’s name will appear on checks being sent to millions of Americans via the federal coronavirus stimulus package, the Washington Post reported, citing IRS officials. The paper checks will include the words “President Donald J. Trump” as the result of an order by the U.S. Treasury Department, per the Post. It will be the first time a president’s name has appeared on an IRS payment. Senior IRS officials told the paper that the decision could delay delivery of the first paper checks, but the Treasury Department said there would be no delay. The economic relief checks will total up to $1,200 for individuals. Those with direct deposit are expected to begin receiving the payments in their accounts this week.
8:47 p.m. San Francisco must get more than 8,000 hotel rooms for the city’s homeless and frontline workers: The emergency ordinance passed unanimously by the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday requires San Francisco to lease 8,250 private rooms in hotels and motels by April 26. That is 1,250 more rooms than planned by Mayor London Breed’s staff is currently working to lease. Read the full story here.
7:55 p.m. Santa Rosa fire department launches Pandemic Response Unit: The Santa Rosa Fire Department has created a unit specifically for responding to calls involving people suspected of having the coronavirus or who are having flu-like symptoms. The unit includes a paramedic and an emergency medical technician with a vehicle carrying personal protective equipment and advanced life support gear, the department said. It launched Tuesday as an addition to the department’s normal daily staffing. “This is by far the most proactive and innovative method to reduce exposure to the coronavirus and limit the possibility of widespread infection within our community, our department and the families of our staff,” Santa Rosa fire Chief Tony Gossner said in a video message.
7:35 p.m. Contra Costa County reaches 600 cases: Officials in Contra Costa County reported 48 new cases of the coronavirus Tuesday, bringing the county’s total to 600. Officials also reported one additional death, the county’s 12th. There are 44 patients currently hospitalized, according to the county’s online tracker.
7:07 p.m. How a San Francisco AIDS conference changed Dr. Fauci’s life: Over a short period — including a pivotal 1990 AIDS conference in San Francisco — Dr. Anthony Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, took bold steps to become a more compassionate and inclusionary scientist, lessons that echo as he negotiates the coronavirus crisis as a White House task force member. Chronicle reporter Peter Hartlaub has the story — along with the 1980s-era photos.
6:56 p.m. 11 dead at Hayward nursing home: Alameda County officials said 11 residents of the Gateway Care & Rehabilitation Center in Hayward had died of COVID-19 — two more than the nine deaths The Chronicle reported Sunday. Dozens of people, both residents and staff, have been infected at the facility. At the Post-Acute Healthcare Center in Castro Valley, one resident has died and 23 staff and 22 residents are infected. “We express our deepest sympathies for the families impacted by this situation,” county officials said.
6:45 p.m. Marin County reports 70 percent of COVID-19 cases have recovered: Marin County officials reported that of 171 people who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the county, 121 have recovered. Two patients are hospitalized right now, which county public health officer Matt Willis said is “about the lowest we’ve seen … since our first spike in cases about a month ago.” Willis previously tested positive for the virus and has since recovered. In a video update Tuesday, Willis said he had antibody testing, and he hopes that immunity “will protect me for the rest of this response.”
6:30 p.m. Bay Area arts community responds to governor’s comments: Gov. Gavin Newsom’s suggestion that live performing arts and other cultural events were unlikely to return in full force for at least several months drew a response of stoic realism from cultural leaders around the Bay Area. Read their reactions here.
6:42 p.m. A’s, Giants participating in antibodies study: While shut down during the coronavirus outbreak, Major League Baseball — including the A’s and Giants — is trying to help combat the disease by participating in what a Stanford professor is calling the “first and largest” antibody study in the country. Chronicle reporter Susan Slusser has the story.
6:30 p.m. Santa Clara County releases virus data for long-term care facilities: Santa Clara County has added a tracker to its coronavirus website reporting confirmed cases in long-term care facilities in the county. As of Tuesday, 252 cases had been reported at those facilities. That includes residents and staff, the county said. Of those cases, 40 people were hospitalized at the time of reporting. There have been 13 deaths from the virus at long-term facilities in the county. “We are paying special attention to long-term care facilities because their clients are at higher risk for more severe disease from COVID-19,” county health officer Dr. Sara Cody said in a statement. “We are acutely aware of this and have been actively investigating and responding to needs in LTCFs to protect our most vulnerable residents.”
6:03 p.m. California’s new normal will look radically different: No football or baseball games. No concerts. No Pride in June, or Burning Man in the fall. Life in California will not look the same when the state emerges from its collective shelter in place, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday, in a sobering address about his plans for re-opening society while the coronavirus remains a threat. Read the full story here.
5:45 p.m. Suicide hotlines see more calls: Calls to Bay Area suicide prevention hotlines are up — some by as much as 100% — with the stresses of staying at home, financial problems, job losses and fear of the coronavirus increasingly wearing on people. Read the full story here.
5:31 p.m. Newsom signs order amending release process for juveniles in custody: California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order Tuesday amending the release and reentry process of juveniles who are in custody in the Division of Juvenile Justice, “so that eligible youth serving time at DJJ can be discharged safely and expeditiously” during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a statement from the governor’s press office. The order calls for all discharge and reentry hearings to be held by videoconference, and also allows reentry consideration hearings to be held in the facility in which they are lodged — instead of the division’s typical process, where youth are taken to a county jail to await their hearing. “Victims and victim representatives will be able to participate in the videoconference hearings,” governor’s officials said.
5:25 p.m. State system issues causes delays in coronavirus trackers: County coronavirus data dashboards were not updated to reflect new cases on Tuesday because of “system issues” with the California Reportable Disease Information Exchange, which is managed by the California Department of Public Health, according to Santa Clara County’s coronavirus data dashboard webpage. “We will update the data in the dashboards as soon as possible,” Santa Clara County officials said. Contra Costa Health Services also announced that its countywide data dashboard was not updated either, stating that they “are awaiting updated data from the state.”
5 p.m. CDC report examines hospital transmission from early COVID-19 patient in Solano County: A report released Tuesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looks at how some of the U.S.’s first known cases of occupational transmission of COVID-19 to health-care workers occurred at a hospital in Solano County. Per the report, a patient with unrecognized COVID-19 arrived at the hospital Feb. 15 and was there for four days. On Feb. 26, the patient was diagnosed with COVID-19. It was determined 121 health-care workers at the hospital had been exposed to the virus. Of those workers, 43 became symptomatic and were tested for the virus. Three tested positive. (The report notes that some who tested negative could have in fact been infected, and some who were not tested because they were asymptomatic could have had coronavirus.) Of the three positives, two were at high risk due to “frequent, close contact” with the patient and the fact that neither wore a face mask, respirator, eye protection or gown, the report states. The third was at medium risk due to “close contact” but not during aerosol-generating procedures. The report notes that none of the health-care workers who had contact with the patient wore personal protective equipment recommended for COVID-19 patient care because “transmission-based precautions were not in use” at the time.
4:42 p.m.: Gov. Newsom’s guidelines cast further doubt on sports’ return: California Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday that “until we get to herd immunity and we get to a vaccine,” mass gatherings are not in the cards. That could mean sports won’t return to normal until 2021. Read Bruce Jenkins’ column on the implications for the Bay Area teams and why fans should brace for the long haul.
4:39 p.m. California prisoners feel like ‘sitting ducks’ as outbreaks ignite: Forty-four prisoners and 21 staffers have tested positive for the coronavirus at the California Institution for Men in Chino, while 15 prisoners and 11 employees have been infected at the state prison in Los Angeles County, according to figures from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. The number of confirmed prisoner cases nearly doubled in Los Angeles and increased more than fivefold at Chino since last week. Read the full story by Chronicle reporters Jason Fagone and Megan Cassidy.
4:30 p.m. Masks? Temperature checks? How restaurants will look different after shelter-in-place: Chefs and restaurateurs are skeptical about the vision Gov. Gavin Newsom laid out Tuesday in his “road map to recovery,” especially suggestions that restaurants might have to take customers’ temperatures at the door and cut the number of diners in half in the eventual phase-out after shelter in place orders begin to lift.
4:32 p.m. Trump mentions “very, very good relationship” with Newsom: President Trump said Tuesday that he has a “very, very good relationship” with California Gov. Gavin Newsom. When asked whether Newsom consulted with Trump before announcing a framework for reopening California, Trump would not answer. After saying on Monday that he has “total authority” to decide when states reopen their economies, Trump seemed to amend his stance, saying he wants governors to make individual plans for their states. “We want them to do an incredible job, I think each one of them will do an incredible job,” he said, adding that the federal government would monitor the process and help as needed.
4:25 p.m. More than 9,000 health care workers in U.S. have contracted the coronavirus: A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says more than 9,200 U.S. health care workers have tested positive for the coronavirus. However, the real number of infected health-care workers is likely higher due to limited available data, per the report. Of the 9,282 confirmed cases among health-care workers as of April 9, 73 percent were women, the median age was 42 years old and 10 percent had been hospitalized. Of 27 total deaths, 10 had occurred in people 65 or older. Among those for whom data on exposure was available, 55 percent of workers reported contact with a COVID-19 patient only in health-care settings, the CDC found.
4:15 p.m. Hospitals partner with feds to create ventilator reserve: A new public-private program will connect U.S. health systems by allowing hospitals with unused ventilators to send them to hospitals that need them most, officials said during a White House press conference. More than 20 of the country’s largest health systems have joined the partnership and pledged more than 4,000 available ventilators.
3:50 p.m. Some states could reopen before May 1, Trump says: President Trump said he will speak with all 50 governors to authorize an individual plan for each state to reopen its economy “at a time and in a manner as most appropriate.” More than 20 states are in “extremely good shape,” Trump said he thinks, and could reopen before May 1. Separately on Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom outlined a framework involving six factors that officials will consider when deciding when and how to ease up on social distancing, stay-at-home orders.
3:40 p.m. DMV extends all expiring licenses: California’s Department of Motor Vehicles said Tuesday it has extended all expiring drivers licenses, though it continues to encourage drivers who are eligible and able to renew their licenses online. Drivers younger than 70 will have licenses extended until May 31 while those over 70 will have them extended for 120 days. Commercial licenses will be extended until June 30. Drivers will not automatically receive a new license or paper extension in the mail, but can request one through the virtual DMV website at https://virtual.dmv.ca.gov/temporary-driver-license-request/. The Chronicle answers other questions about changes at the DMV here.
3:38 p.m. SF clothing company The RealReal lays off 235 employees, expects first quarter loss: The RealReal, a San Francisco company that sells secondhand luxury apparel and goods online, is laying off 10% of its staff, or 235 employees, the company announced Tuesday. The RealReal will also furlough an additional 15% of its store and e-commerce employees, cut executive salaries, renegotiate vendor contracts and postpone the opening of its Chicago store. The company said the cost-cutting will help it save $70 million in 2020.
3:26 p.m. Trump says U.S. will halt funding for World Health Organization: President Trump announced during a White House news briefing that the U.S. will halt funding to the World Health Organization while officials conduct a review of the agency’s “mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus.” The U.S. gives $400 to $500 million to the World Health Organization each year, Trump said.
2:52 p.m. California reports 71 deaths in single day: State health officials reported 71 additional deaths on Tuesday, bringing the state’s death toll from 687 to 758 — a 10% increase. (State reporting is one day behind, so figures reported Tuesday refer to Monday’s totals.) There are 3,124 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in California, and 1,177 people in intensive care, officials said. That’s one less person in the ICU than on Monday. Hospitalizations reported Tuesday grew by 3.6% from 3,015 a day earlier. There are also 2,039 suspected cases hospitalized and 375 in intensive care, officials said.
3:05 p.m. Newsom believes schools may look quite different upon eventual return: Students across California may return to classrooms in the fall, but school likely won’t look the same. State and education officials are starting to talk about how social distancing can be implemented at schools when they reopen, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday. “We want to get our kids back into schools,” the governor said. Read the full story here.
3 p.m. PGA Championship in SF without fans a possibility: PGA of America chief executive officer Seth Waugh said Tuesday that his organization is “fully prepared” to hold the PGA Championship at Harding Park without fans. Waugh, in an appearance on Sirius XM PGA Tour Radio, publicly acknowledged this possibility for the first time. He spoke a few hours before Gov. Gavin Newsom struck a pessimistic tone about large crowds of any kind, saying during a news conference, “The prospect of mass gatherings is negligible at best until we get to herd immunity and we get to a vaccine.” It’s unclear if Newsom, or San Francisco officials, would allow the PGA Championship to be held at Harding even without spectators. The event, originally scheduled for May 14-17, was pushed back last week until August 6-9, which would make it the first major championship on golf’s reshaped calendar.
2:58 p.m. Oakland man freed from ICE detention: A federal judge ordered the immediate release of an Oakland man who was being detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement at the Yuba County Jail in Marysville, saying the jail conditions put him at a high risk of contracting COVID-19. U.S. Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler ordered the Department of Homeland Security on Sunday to release the man so that he can shelter in place with his wife in Oakland, according to the Alameda County public defender’s office. Read the full story by Chronicle immigration reporter Tatiana Sanchez.
2:51 p.m. Nearly 100 additional California health care workers infected: State health officials reported 98 new cases of COVID-19 among health care workers on Tuesday, bringing the total cases to 2,599, up from 2,501 reported a day earlier. These include on-the-job and other exposures.
2:49 p.m. California’s independent contractors can apply for unemployment starting March 29: Self-employed workers, along with people who have run out of regular benefits or don’t qualify, can soon apply for new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, which is being funded by the Cares Act. Payments will begin within 24 to 48 hours for people who qualify and can be claimed retroactively to January 27. Read the full story here.
2:46 p.m. Trump asserts authority by referencing “Mutiny of the Bounty” movie: President Trump has continued to insist that he — not governors — has authority over the decision to reopen the economy. On Tuesday he tweeted: “Tell the Democrat Governors that “Mutiny On The Bounty” was one of my all time favorite movies. A good old fashioned mutiny every now and then is an exciting and invigorating thing to watch, especially when the mutineers need so much from the Captain. Too easy!” A 1935 film included Clark Gable as a star and the 1962 version starred Marlon Brando. California Gov. Gavin Newsom, asked at a noon press conference Tuesday about Trump’s claim of total authority, said, “I’m not going there.”
2:22 p.m. Coronavirus hits Bay Area’s artisan cheese industry hard: Bay Area artisan cheese makers have seen their sales drop — some by 40% — since the state’s shelter-in-place order went into effect, right when their goats and sheep are producing the most milk. About half of the state’s boutique cheese makers are located in Marin and Sonoma counties.
2:18 p.m. More than 10,000 deaths in New York City: Health officials revised the death toll in New York City to include people who were not tested but whose deaths were presumably caused by COVID-19, the New York Times reported. With these new guidelines, city officials added more than 3,700 deaths on Tuesday, bringing the total to more than 10,000 deaths in the city that is epicenter of the U.S. outbreak.
2:17 p.m. SF State seeks student input on graduation: San Francisco State officials are asking students for their feedback on one of the thorny, emotional byproducts of the coronavirus pandemic: What to do about graduation? S.F. State emailed a survey to graduating seniors Monday, seeking their preference on how to handle this year’s commencement ceremony: virtual only, in-person at a date to be determined or a combination. The event, originally scheduled for May 22 at Oracle Park, previously was postponed. Read the full story here.
1:55 p.m. Mayor Breed says San Francisco can’t be complacent: Mayor London Breed on Tuesday said San Francisco can’t be complacent and urged residents not to relax despite evidence that early restrictions worked in holding off furious of the coronavirus. The city has fewer than 1,000 cases and 15 deaths, and health officials say there is evidence that early mitigation efforts worked to flatten the curve. But Breed said that although hospitals have not been overrun, officials are working to prepare for the worst case situation and maintain capacity to care for any patient who needs treatment. “So far it’s not been as bad, but it still does not mean that something can’t hit us real quickly. We’ve got to be ready regardless,” she said, adding that life will be different even after the health order is lifted. She said she would “definitely” reinstate a shelter-in-place order if officials see a spike in cases after it is lifted.
1:50 p.m. County reports fourth death connected to Orinda nursing home outbreak: Four people who became infected with COVID-19 at Orinda Care Center have died as of Tuesday, Contra Costa County spokesperson Will Harper said. The county last reported there were 50 total cases at the facility, including 27 residents and 23 staff.
1:41 p.m. Markets bounce back: Stocks rose Tuesday on Wall Street as traders gingerly embraced early signs that the White House and a number of state governors are considering how to gradually reopen the economy. The Dow Jones industrial average added 559 points to close at 23,950, a gain of 2.4%.
1:36 p.m. S.F. Opera cancels summer season: The San Francisco Opera company announced the cancellation of 18 performances of operas by Verdi, Handel and Bay Area composer Mason Bates. The loss of the summer season means loss of an estimated $8 million loss for the company.
1:31 p.m. Central California pastor cited for hosting Easter congregation: A Merced pastor has been cited for gathering nearly 60 people on Easter at Missionary Baptist Church in violation of the state’s stay-home orders. Merced County sheriff’s deputies found numerous cars parked out of view from the road behind the church and all of the church’s doors locked, said sheriff’s spokesman Deputy Daryl J. Allen. When the door was opened to them, deputies discovered 50 to 60 people and disbanded the gathering. The pastor was cited, but is said to be pursuing technology upgrades to switch to online services. Allen said if he does so the violation will not be pursued.
1:23 Wells Fargo profit tanks: Wells Fargo’s profit plunged nearly 90% in the first quarter as the bank had to set aside billions of dollars to cover potentially bad loans due to the coronavirus pandemic. The San Francisco company said Tuesday that it boosted its loan loss provisions — the money set aside to cover potentially bad loans — to $3.83 billion from $845 million a year ago, as borrowers suddenly face the possibility of going broke because the economy has effectively shut down in a matter of weeks. Wells’ earnings dropped to $653 million from $5.9 billion in last year’s first quarter.
1:16 p.m. Bay Area congressman seeks to prevent denial of business claims: Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, announced legislation Tuesday to keep insurers from denying the claims of companies with so-called business- interruption insurance during events like the coronavirus pandemic or power shut-offs. If a major event forces those companies to close their doors, he said, they “deserve to have their claims honored.” He said many businesses in his district told him their claims were being denied during the pandemic.
1:07 p.m. “I’m not going there,” Newsom says on Trump’s claim of “total” authority: Gov. Gavin Newsom said he was “not going there” when asked Tuesday for a reaction to President Trump’s controversial claims that he has total authority over states to decide when to reopen the economy. “We just want to get stuff done in the state of California,” Newsom said during a news conference where he outlined the key points that will guide state decisions on ending stay-home orders.
1:00 p.m. Number of COVID-19 patients in ICUs sees modest drop: The number of COVID-19 patients in Hospital intensive care saw a “modest” decrease of 0.1% into Tuesday, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced. The total dropped to 1,177. Newsom said the number of ICU patients and hospitalizations are among the criteria that officials are factoring into their decisions on when to end shelter-in-place orders. “I know you want the timeline but we can’t get ahead of ourselves,” Newsom said. “I don’t want to make a political decision that puts people lives at risk and puts the economy at more risk.”
12:48 p.m. SF Pride canceled: San Francisco’s Pride parade and festival has been canceled this year, organizers said Tuesday. The announcement follows last week’s statement by organizers that the festivities were still on but would look different with coronavirus restrictions taken into account.
12:38 p.m. State leaders anticipate different life when stay-home rules end: Gov. Gavin Newsom and state Health Officer Dr. Sonia Y. Angell on Tuesday warned that California life will look different after the eventual lifting of stay-home orders. Angell previewed the prospect of fewer tables in restaurants, and more common use of face masks in public. It won’t be the same normal that preceded the coronavirus shelter-in-place orders, she said, adding, “This is a conversation about modifying. It’s about going forward.”
12:20 p.m. Newsom outlines six-indicator plan to reopen economy: Gov. Gavin Newsom outlined six criteria on Tuesday that state officials must consider before reducing stay-home orders: expanded testing, contact tracing, isolation and support for coronavirus-exposed and infected people; ability to prevent high-risk people from getting infected; ability of the health care system to handle a surges; development of therapeutics; support of physical distancing at environments such as businesses, schools and child care facilities; and a way to determine when to reinstitute restrictions like the stay-at-home orders.
12:10 p.m. California law schools want to cancel this year’s bar exams: Should graduates still be allowed to practice? Berkeley and UCLA law deans propose postponing the bar exam in July due to coronavirus. Instead, they want to allow new graduates to practice law under an experienced attorney’s supervision for the next year or two. Read the full story here.
11:48 a.m. Cases from San Francisco’s largest shelter increase to 102: The number of confirmed coronavirus cases from San Francisco’s largest homeless shelter, MSC South, increased Tuesday to 92 residents and 10 staff, city officials said. That was up from the total of 91 infected residents and staff that health officals disclosed on Monday. Officials said they moved everyone out of the shelter over the weekend and into hotels, isolation, quarantine or shelter-in-place sites.
11:40 a.m. Despite reports of more drinking, California craft brewery sales drop 43%: Since shelter-in-place orders began, reports using limited statistics have circulated that Americans are drinking — or at least stocking up on — a lot more alcohol than usual, with retail beer sales up 41% year-over-year during the week of March 15, according to Nielsen. Those figures might make it sound like breweries, especially in craft beer-loving California, should be seeing strong sales numbers right now. But the opposite is true, according to a new survey released by the California Craft Brewers Association.
11:17 a.m. Federal aid bound for Bay Area airports: The Bay Area’s biggest airports will received tens of millions of dollars in federal stimulus aid, Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announced Tuesday. It’s part of a $10 billion package to commercial and general aviation airports from the so-called CARE program. San Francisco International Airport will receive $245.8 million, Oakland International will get $44.7 million and Mineta San Jose will receive $65.6 million. The Bay Area’s smaller general aviation airports will also receive aid.
11:10 a.m. Pelosi has kitchen-table strategy during pandemic: Speaker Nancy Pelosi lacks the White House pulpit that President Trump commands every day, as he uses the coronavirus pandemic to keep the focus on himself during this election year, but she manages to still be all over the place — and she does it from her San Francisco kitchen, Politico reports. Pelosi pops up on TV news, talking to reporters and even cycling through the late-night talk show junket, in interviews from a computer on a table that sits just off her kitchen. It’s her antidote countering the president’s pronouncements in her continuing role as the most prominent face of the opposition to Trump.
10:49 a.m. Tax deadline extended, but you might want to file anyway: Wednesday is April 15, typically the deadline for most people to pay their income taxes. But this year, federal and California filing and payment deadlines have been pushed back 90 days. Still, if you don’t normally file a tax return — those whose income comes mostly from retirement benefits often don’t have to — you can enter some basic identity and bank account information to make sure you get your payment from the federal coronavirus stimulus fund. Here’s an FAQ on taxes and economic help available.
10:32 a.m. Dr. Fauci calls May 1 target for economy to reopen nationwide “a bit overly optimistic”: Dr. Anthony Fauci sounded a note of caution Tuesday about increasingly optimistic White House hopes to reopen the economy in the coming weeks. The U.S. lacks the critical testing and tracing procedures in place that are needed to begin that process, the government’s top infectious disease expert said in an interview with the Associated Press. “We have to have something in place that is efficient and that we can rely on, and we’re not there yet,” he said. Fauci said a May 1 target is “a bit overly optimistic” for many areas of the country. Any easing off on strict social-distancing rules would have to occur on a “rolling” basis, not all at once, he said.
9:48 a.m. Obama says Biden has qualities to lead in crises like current pandemic: In formally endorsing Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden on Tuesday, former President Barack Obama said the man who served as his vice president is the best leader to see the country through crises like the coronavirus pandemic. In a video endorsement aimed at helping his party wrest the White House from President Trump, Obama stated. “These aren’t normal times.” The virus, he said, requires “the kind of leadership that’s guided by knowledge and experience, honesty and humility, empathy and grace.” Such leadership, he added, “doesn’t just belong in our state capitals and mayors’ offices — it belongs in the White House. … Joe has all the qualities we need in a president right now.”
9:24 a.m. San Francisco just shy of 1,000 cases as 30 new ones are confirmed: Thirty more people in San Francisco have tested positive for COVID-19, growing the city’s number of cases to 987, according to the Department of Public Health.
9:15 a.m. S.F. startup links people to coronavirus clinical trials: Clara Health is backing a new website, www.worldwithoutcovid.org, to connect people with clinical trials for treatments and vaccines. Here’s what you need to know about the effort and how it may help in the coronavirus fight.
9:06 a.m. Another Theodore Roosevelt sailor in ICU with COVID-19 symptoms: A second sailor from the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt has been moved to intensive care with shortness of breath, the Navy said Tuesday, a day after a sailor from the coronavirus-stricken ship died from COVID-19 complications in Guam. Over the weekend, four sailors were hospitalized to better monitor their coronavirus symptoms, and one of that group is the one moved to ICU. In all, 589 sailors from the ship have tested positive, with 93% of the crew tested, the Navy said. More than 300 have either not been tested or not received their results. More than 4,000 have been moved off the ship.
8:50 a.m. Union City official’s grandmother is 10th to die at Hayward nursing home: The 10th resident of Gateway Care & Rehabilitation Center in Hayward who died after testing positive for COVID-19 was the grandmother of Union City Councilman Jaime Patiño, the official confirmed Tuesday. Emma Patiño, 84, died Monday evening at Kaiser Permanente in San Leandro, where she was taken Friday after her condition worsened, Patiño said. She was found to have pneumonia, and the cause of death was not immediately clear, he said, adding that he believed “she probably would have had a better chance to fight this,” had she been hospitalized sooner. On Monday afternoon, officials said 41 residents at Gateway had tested positive for the coronavirus as had 25 staffers. Nine residents had died. Read Alejandro Serrano’s story here.
8:29 a.m. Judge orders Oakland man released from detention: A federal judge has ordered the immediate release of an Oakland man from immigration detention because COVID-19 has made conditions too dangerous for him at the Yuba County Jail, according to the Alameda County Public Defender’s Office. The man, who was not identified, has medical issues that put him at heightened risk of contracting the virus, the office said Monday. Judge Laurel Beeler said the man cannot “meaningfully protect himself” at the jail.
8:20 a.m. Hotels want leeway on spending stimulus money: Hotel owners, staggering under the economic impact of the coronavirus, say they may not be able to use funds from the federal stimulus package unless Congress makes changes, the Washington Post reports. One provision, for instance, requires hotel staff be rehired by the end of June, but hotels don’t know if business will return by then. And unions are worried about hotel proposals such as the desire to spend stimulus money on fixed costs such as franchise fees, even as workers remain home.
7:49 a.m. Trump doubles down, insisting he has final word: President Donald Trump on Tuesday morning continued pressing his case that he, not states, has the authority to reopen the nation that is largely shut down by the coronavirus. On Twitter, he said it seems New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants “independence,” but he will not get it, an apparent reference to Cuomo and eastern states collaborating on how to emerge from their stay-at-home orders and decide themselves when to reopen their economies. Gov. Gavin Newsom who announced a similar partnership with Oregon and Washington, is expected to outline California’s plans on Tuesday. Cuomo in an interview on NBC’s “Today” responded to Trump’s assertion that as president his authority was “total.” “We don’t have a king,” Cuomo said, “We ran away from having a king, and George Washington was president, not King Washington. So the president doesn’t have total authority.”
7:38 a.m. Obama said to plan Biden announcement: Former Vice President Joe Biden, who
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