California governor issues order allowing state to commandeer hotels if needed to treat coronavirus patients

Catherine Garcia

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) issued an executive order on Thursday addressing the coronavirus pandemic, saying his goal is to "fully implement these procedures and protocols to slow down the spread, to get through a peak, and to get through the next few months, so we don't overwhelm our health care delivery system."

His executive order allows the state to take over hotels and medical facilities if necessary to treat coronavirus patients, and also gives government officials the ability to hold private teleconferences without violating open meeting laws.

In California, 198 people have tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus, Newsom said, a 10 percent increase from Wednesday. Earlier in the day, he called for the statewide cancellation of all gatherings of 250 or more people.

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