The Chronicle began covering the coronavirus crisis before the first cases were reported in the Bay Area and a pandemic was declared. We reorganized the newsroom to dedicate nearly every resource to stories focusing on the health and economic disasters. Every day we have published live updates to reflect the most critical local, national and global updates on COVID-19, and this news is free of charge in an effort to keep our community safe and informed.
• Read the previous batch of updates from May 23-24.
• Read the previous batch of updates from May 27-28.
• See the full timeline.
Updates from Tuesday, May 26:
11:30 p.m. New cases in Sonoma County: Officials in Sonoma County reported nine new cases of the coronavirus Tuesday, bringing the county's total to 524 confirmed cases. Of those, 298 cases are active, 222 people have recovered and four people have died, according to the county's website. The total represents a 2.24% positive rate among 23,356 people tested for the virus, per the county.
11:13 p.m. Health worker cases in U.S. top 60,000, CDC says: More than 62,000 U.S. health care workers have tested positive for the coronavirus and at least 291 have died, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday. Health worker status was available for only 21.3% of cases for which data was collected, the CDC said, indicating the actual number might be higher. As of Monday, 9,360 cases and 50 deaths had been confirmed among health care workers in California alone, the state's public health department reported.
10:49 p.m. IHME model reduces projected U.S. death toll: The U.S. is now projected to record 131,967 deaths by August due to the coronavirus in a model by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at University of Washington, a decrease of more than 11,000 from the agency's projection a week earlier. That is despite lockdown measures being lifted across the country — the IHME noted mobility patterns on April 26 were 35% to 40% below normal in most U.S. states but back up to 10%-to-30% below normal in at least 20 states as of Tuesday. The IHME website did not provide a reason for the change in its projected death toll.
10:35 p.m. Amtrak calls for nearly $1.5 billion bailout, report says: Amtrak said Tuesday it needs an additional $1.475 billion in federal aid and still plans to cut its workforce by up to 20% as the coronavirus pandemic decimates travel, according to Reuters . Amtrak said its ridership and revenue are down 95% or more year-over-year since the onset of the pandemic, Reuters reported. Amtrak previously received $1 billion in emergency federal aid in April.
9:15 p.m. Gatherings of 100 pose 'serious risk' for spread of virus, health officer says: Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County's public health officer, said California's move to allow religious gatherings and in-person protests of up to 100 people "poses a very serious risk for the spread of COVID-19." Cody told county supervisors Tuesday the number far exceeds limits on gatherings of 10 people in New York and 25 people in New Jersey. "Our ability to contain the virus from spreading if there's one COVID-positive individual at such a large event is quite limited," Cody said.
9 p.m. Santa Clara County releases information on every COVID-19 death: The data, which is the most comprehensive to be published by a public health department in the Bay Area, provides the age, race, gender, residential ZIP code, cause of death and underlying health condition for all 139 people who have died from the disease. Read the story here.
8:25 p.m. State's reopening pace 'concerning,' health official says: Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County's health officer, said the pace at which California is relaxing lockdown restrictions is "concerning" because the coronavirus' 14-day incubation period means the effects of recent changes to health orders has not manifested yet. In recent days, California has relaxed restrictions on religious gatherings, retail shopping, salons and other activities. Santa Clara is among Bay Area counties moving at a slower pace and Cody told county supervisors Tuesday, "The state modifications are being made without a real understanding of the consequences of what the last move has been."
7:50 p.m. LA County allowing churches, stores to reopen: Houses of worship can resume at 25% occupancy, some retail stores can reopen for in-store shopping and malls can reopen at 50% capacity under a revised Los Angeles County health order issued Tuesday. Businesses are required to implement health and safety protocols and residents are still required to practice physical distancing in public and wear a cloth face covering when in contact with others, according to the order.
7:27 p.m. Contact tracing leading to rise in Sonoma County cases, official says: Sonoma County health officer Dr. Sundari Mase said, "intensive contact tracing" of positive coronavirus cases is partly responsible for a recent increase in reported cases in the county. Sonoma County has confirmed 203 new cases in the last 14 days, Mase said. The county has uncovered spread of the virus both in family and work groups but is "also seeing more community transmission cases," Mase said in a virtual town hall Tuesday.
7 p.m. Fourth Santa Clara County inmate tests positive: A fourth inmate in the Santa Clara County jail system has tested positive for the coronavirus, a county sheriff's spokesperson confirmed. The inmate was arrested by San Jose police on May 9 and tested positive while getting booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail's restrictive movement unit for a 14-day observation period, the spokesperson said. The inmate is now housed in an isolation cell at Elmwood Correctional Facility and is being monitored by health staff, the spokesperson said.
6:19 p.m. Sonoma County says it won't reopen salons, places of worship right away: Sonoma County announced on Twitter it will not immediately amend its health order to reopen some functions newly allowed by the state. Though the state has "eased restrictions for in-store retail, barbershops, hair salons, and places of worship, the Sonoma County Health Officer will continue to adhere to the current County Health Order," county officials said. The "primary reason" for not modifying the health order is that Sonoma County "has seen a large increase" in new coronavirus cases and hospitalizations in the past week, the county said.
6 p.m. LA opens test site at Dodger Stadium: A new coronavirus testing site in the parking lot at Dodger Stadium has the capacity to conduct 6,000 tests per day, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a Tuesday news briefing. The city, its fire department and the nonprofit Community Organized Relief Effort are partnering on the drive-through site, the Los Angeles Times reported.
5:41 p.m. Los Angeles to reopen all stores for in-person shopping: Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that starting Wednesday all retail businesses in Los Angeles will be allowed to reopen for in-person shopping if they adopt safety protocols to protect employees and customers. Garcetti said limiting many stores to curbside pickup had "put small retail at a disadvantage." Garcetti said: "If we don't do it right, we'll see things get shut down. But I believe that we can do it right and we've earned the right way to do it."
5:10 p.m. Pop-up testing available in Santa Clara County this week: Santa Clara County will offer free coronavirus testing on Tuesday in Mountain View, at Rengstorff Park Pool Area from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and on Thursday in San Jose, in the parking lot of La Placita Tropicana Shopping Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the county announced. Tests do not require health insurance or a doctor's note, the county said. County officials recommend that workers interacting regularly with the public get tested once a month even if they are asymptomatic.
5:05 p.m. Three new cases in Marin County: Public health officials confirmed three new cases of the coronavirus on Tuesday in Marin County, bringing the total case count to 420. There have been 14 deaths, 52 hospitalizations and 269 recoveries, officials said.
5 p.m. New coronavirus cases grow 40% in the Bay Area, hitting Alameda County hardest: That's compared to a 10% increase statewide. Alameda County has surpassed Santa Clara County as the region's hardest hit spot in the region. Bay Area experts say the increase may have started when construction sites re-opened, and now they say they will be extremely cautious about next steps. Read the story here.
4:53 p.m. Mandatory testing for staff at Chino state prison: All employees will be tested for the coronavirus at the California Institution for Men in Chino (San Bernardino County), where nine inmates have died due to the coronavirus, the Los Angeles Times reports. As of Tuesday, 635 inmates at the Chino prison had tested positive for the virus, including 458 in custody with active cases, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation website. The prison has confirmed 58 cases among staff, with 35 returned to work, according to state corrections officials.
4:40 p.m. Solano County case count rises: Officials in Solano County reported 44 additional cases of the coronavirus Tuesday, bringing the county's total to 499. Solano County had not updated its case total since last Friday. The county has 65 active cases with 18 patients hospitalized as of Tuesday, according to its website.
4:25 p.m. San Mateo County votes to stop charging for reusable bags: San Mateo County supervisors voted Tuesday to suspend an ordinance that requires grocery and retail stores in the county to charge customers for reusable bags, the county announced . Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a similar statewide order on April 22, but a county resolution said the order did not apply and stores in San Mateo County were still technically required to charge for bags. The county's health order prohibits people from bringing their own bags into stores to guard against spread of the coronavirus.
4:20 p.m. Marin County encourages essential workers to get tested: As testing capacity expands, health officials are urging essential workers to get a free coronavirus test if they have frequent contact with other people, Marin County officials announced. Health officials said they have seen spikes of case among people who work at grocery stores, construction sites, gas stations and restaurants. Seniors and people who live in multi-generational homes should also get tested because they are at higher risk, county officials said.
4:15 p.m. More DMV offices to reopen Thursday: The California Department of Motor Vehicles will reopen 46 more field offices on Thursday , in addition to 25 reopened earlier this month, to assist customers with an existing appointment and to provide limited transactions that require an in-person visit. In the Bay Area, the 46 include Corte Madera, Daly City, Fairfield, Fremont, Oakland Coliseum, Pittsburg, Pleasanton, San Mateo and Santa Clara. They will be open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. except for Wednesday when they will open at 9 a.m. The DMV "has begun rescheduling prior appointments and notifying customers of the new date," it said in a press release, but didn't say whether all appointments missed since the offices closed March 27 will be automatically rescheduled. "Appointments will be rescheduled as time permits," said DMV spokeswoman Anita Gore.
4:02 p.m. Santa Clara County confirms 24 new cases: Public health officials in Santa Clara County reported 24 more cases of the coronavirus Tuesday to increase the county's number of known cases to 2,675. The total represents a 4.06% positive rate out of 65,957 people tested for the virus, according to the county.
3:55 p.m. San Mateo County closes PPE drop-off site: County officials have closed a Redwood City site for the public to donate personal protective equipment to be used by health care workers combating the coronavirus, San Mateo County announced. The site, which opened in March, collected more than 200,000 gloves, more than 5,000 N95 and KN95 masks, 1,650 face coverings and nearly 13,000 surgical masks, the county said. Donations had tapered and closing the site allows staff to be redirected, the county said.
3:45 p.m. New cases in Napa County: Officials reported eight new cases of the coronavirus in Napa County, increasing the county's total to 109. Of those cases, 53 are active, 53 people have recovered and three people have died, according to the county's website . The positive case rate represents 1.7% of 6,482 people who have been tested, according to the county.
3:40 p.m. Alameda County nears 3,000 cases: Public health officials in Alameda County reported 49 new cases of the coronavirus Tuesday, bringing the county's total to 2,986 confirmed cases. The county has reported 93 deaths.
3:30 p.m. Bay Area hospital cases climb: The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in hospitals in the nine Bay Area counties increased each day from Friday through Sunday before decreasing by one case to 250 on Monday, according to state data reviewed by The Chronicle. It marked the area's first consecutive days reporting increased hospitalization numbers since April 19-20. Statewide, 3,065 confirmed hospital cases were reported Monday, a one-day 1.7% increase, while confirmed ICU cases rose 2.1% to 1,084.
2:50 p.m. Twitter fact-checks Trump's mischaracterizaton of mail-in ballots: Twitter added a link to "get the facts" to President Trump's tweet about California's mail ballot initiative. Trump tweeted that voting by mail would lead to election fraud, singling out Gov. Gavin Newsom's plan to reduce coronavirus risk by sending registered voters mail-in ballots. Twitter added a link to Trump's post that goes to page stating "Trump falsely claimed that mail-in ballots would lead to 'a Rigged Election.' However, fact-checkers say there is no evidence that mail-in ballots are linked to voter fraud."
2:30 p.m. Santa Cruz County allows office, retail other reopening: Office workspaces, in-store retail, religious services and cultural ceremonies in Santa Cruz County can resume under a new health order issued by health officials, effective 11:59 p.m. Tuesday. Businesses and operations that reopen must follow social distancing and face-covering orders, health officials said in a statement. Persons older than 65 and those with medical conditions should continue staying home.
2:20 p.m. FBI ends probe of biotech trades by Feinstein's husband: The FBI is no longer investigating stock trades made by Sen. Dianne Feinstein's husband in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, the senator's office said Tuesday. Investigators had questioned sales of millions of dollars of biotechnology stocks made shortly after senators received briefings in January about the coronavirus spreading. Read the details .
2:16 p.m. Deaths spike among SF homeless: The number of homeless people in San Francisco who died since March spiked dramatically compared to last year, an increase that officials say was likely driven by drug overdoses and a disruption to shelter and services due to the coronavirus pandemic. None appear to be directly related to COVID-19, according to preliminary Public Health data obtained by The Chronicle .
2:12 p.m. San Francisco Botanical Garden to reopen June 1: The San Francisco Botanical Garden will reopen on June 1 after closing in March due to the coronavirus pandemic. Visitors are encouraged to buy tickets in advance to reduce transaction times at gates. Social distancing and face coverings will be required in the garden and the number of people allowed in simultaneously will be limited.
2:07 p.m. Only 3 Bay Area counties qualify for new state barbershop, salon rule: In the Bay Area, only Napa, Solano and Sonoma counties are eligible so far to open barbershops and hair salons under Gov. Gavin Newsom's guidelines announced Tuesday. Counties have to first have received state permission to move faster on loosening lockdown measures. Read The Chronicle's story.
1:50 p.m. Contra Costa County confirms 17 more cases: Seventeen more cases of the coronavirus were confirmed in Contra Costa County, bringing the number of known cases so far to 1,353, health officials said .
1:38 p.m. California death toll over holiday plummets to lowest since late March: Sixteen people in California died of COVID-19 on Sunday and again on Monday, marking the fewest number of fatalities per day since the 14 recorded March 29, The Chronicle's comprehensive tracking shows. It was by far the lowest two-day total of lives lost since March 28-29, when combined deaths totaled 31.
1:22 p.m. A's to start furloughs and salary reductions: The Oakland A's have begun cutting back on fulltime employees during the coronavirus pandemic work stoppage, informing pro scouts they will be furloughed starting next week and amateur scouts after next month's draft, The Chronicle is reporting. The affects more than half the team's front-office staff of more than 150.
1:16 p.m. Reopening boosts markets: Optimism over the reopening of the economy overshadowed lingering worries about the coronavirus pandemic, sending stocks up sharply Tuesday. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 530 points to close at 24,995, a gain of more than 2%.
12:44 p.m. California records 19 more deaths: Nineteen more people in California died of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday, and more than 2,000 new cases of the coronavirus were confirmed.
12:40 p.m. How to track California's reopening: The shifting outlines of what's open county by county can spur confusion and frustration: What's open, what's still closed,what about parks, beaches, or travel? What's the difference between "Early Stage 2" and "Advanced Stage 2"? Get answers to these questions and track the state's reopening in The Chronicle's new interactive resource. https://projects.sfchronicle.com/2020/coronavirus-map/california-reopening/
12:35 p.m. Counties can start to reopen barbershops and salons, Newsom says: Barbershops and salons can begin to reopen in counties where health departments give their approval, Gov. Newsom said at a briefing Tuesday. Counties that do so must meet the state's criteria to move ahead of the current statewide restrictions — 47 out of 58 counties have done so — and shops have to take precautions to protect workers and patrons.
12:08 p.m. Morgan Hill seafood wholesaler struck by outbreak: At least 38 workers at a Morgan Hill seafood wholesaler have tested positive for the coronavirus, Santa Clara County's top health official said Tuesday. Dr. Sara Cody told the county's Health and Hospital Committee that officials will test everyone again Wednesday at Lusamerica Foods where the outbreak was confirmed. The first case arose a few weeks ago in an employee whose spouse fell ill, Cody said. Lusamerica said all of the infected remained at home and most were asymptomatic. "We are doing everything we can to provide a safe working environment for our employees," chief operating officer Louise Moretti told The Chronicle.
11:58 a.m. GOP convention solicited by two states: Two GOP governors are offering up their states to host the Republican National Convention, a day after President Trump threatened to pull the August event out of North Carolina if that state's governor doesn't assure him it can go forward despite coronavirus fears. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp sent an open plea pitching his state, and Florida's Gov. Ron DeSantis chimed in as well.
11:40 a.m. Blood clots are new worry in COVID-19 patients: Blood clots that can cause strokes, heart attacks and dangerous blockages in legs and lungs are increasingly being found in COVID-19 patients, including children. Even tiny clots that can damage tissue are seen, confounding doctors' understanding of what was once considered mainly a respiratory infection, the Associated Press reports.
11:24 a.m. Newsom to update on pandemic efforts: Gov. Gavin Newsom planned a noon briefing Tuesday on the coronavirus in California, likely featuring questions about his new directive Monday allowing houses of worship and retail stores to reopen with conditions.
11:09 a.m. Poll finds more than 2-1 margin in favor of voting by mail: As President Trump without evidence denounces voting by mail as a scam, a national Fox News poll indicates that by a more than 2-to-1 margin Americans favor allowing mail-in ballots in November due to coronavirus health concerns. Nearly two-thirds were in favor, but the poll reflected a large partisan divide.
10:53 a.m. Pharmacies ramp up for regular flu season: U.S. pharmacy chains are preparing a big push for flu vaccinations when the season kicks off in October, hoping to curb tens of thousands of serious cases that could coincide with a second wave of coronavirus infections. A Reuters/Ipsos poll found that about 60 percent of U.S. adults plan to get the flu vaccine in the fall. Typically fewer than half of Americans get vaccinated.
10:46 a.m. Pence aide back at White House after infection: Katie Miller, Vice President Pence's press secretary, said Tuesday that she has returned to work after three negative tests for the coronavirus. Miller was notified May 8 that she had tested positive — a revelation that heightened concerns about exposure within the White House.
10:40 a.m. The coronavirus could derail efforts to save nearly extinct rhino species: Groundbreaking work to keep alive the nearly extinct northern white rhino subspecies — population, two — by in-vitro fertilization has been stalled by coronavirus travel restrictions. And time is running out, the Associated Press reports.
10:30 a.m. San Mateo County announces six more deaths: Six more people in San Mateo County died of COVID-19 and 71 more cases of the coronavirus were confirmed, according to health officials. The county has recorded 82 COVID-19 deaths in all and confirmed 1,904 cases of the infection.
10:25 a.m. Obsessive compulsive therapy helps sufferers cope: But OCD sufferers in the Bay Area say that years of therapy have made them the calmest person in their household as the coronavirus-wrought intense handwashing, fear of leaving the home and fear of causing harm to others mimics classic OCD struggles. Read the story from The Chronicle's Peter Hartlaub.
10:05 a.m. Pentagon watchdog who oversaw pandemic relief spending steps down: Glenn Fine, ousted by President Trump last month as head of a watchdog panel overseeing how his administration spends trillions of taxpayer dollars in coronavirus pandemic relief, has resigned from his Pentagon job.
9:57 a.m. Meatpacking companies keep case numbers secret: Dozens of U.S. meatpacking facilities, places where the coronavirus spreads rapidly, are beginning to reopen after President Trump declared them "critical infrastructure." Yet it's hard to know if the contagion is contained or if new cases are emerging even amid new safety measures, the New York Times reports, because companies won't disclose case counts.
9:40 a.m. Reopenings continue as outbreaks on the rise in many states: About a dozen states are seeing an uptick in new coronavirus cases, even as all 50 states move to reopen. States that reopened earlier — or never fully shut down — are among them. Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee have had a rise in new cases several weeks after moving to reopen.
9:30 a.m. Dozens of SF homeless moved to RVs in Bayview: With homeless shelter capacity reduced 76% by needing to maintain social distance, San Francisco has moved 98 peple to newly available RVs in the Bayview as one solution, Mayor London Breed said Tuesday on Twitter. The Port Commission let the city put 120 trailers and RVs on Pier 94.
9:24 a.m. Don't throw your stimulus payment in the trash: Following reports that some people thought their prepaid debit card containing their economic impact payment was junk mail, the IRS is explaining how to recognize it. It arrives "in a plain envelope from Money Network Cardholder Services. The Visa name will appear on the front of the card; the back of the card has the name of the issuing bank, MetaBank®, N.A." The mail will identify it as an Economic Impact Payment Card.
9:16 a.m. Some New York ZIP codes have a 40% infection rate: Officials in New York will start focusing their efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic in ZIP codes that have recorded up to 40% infection rates in New York City, about double the rate of the city overall, Gov. Cuomo said. Those are predominantly lower-income and minority communities, he said.
9:12 a.m. Defining moment for Congress in election year: Congress is at a crossroads in the coronavirus crisis, wrestling over whether to "go big," as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi wants for the next relief bill, or hit "pause," as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell insists. Billions of dollars in state aid, jobless benefits and health resources for Americans are at stake in an election year.
9:08 a.m. Cuomo and Trump to meet: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he's scheduled to meet with President Trump on Wednesday to discuss several topics related to the coronavirus pandemic, including the start of infrastructure projects that need federal aid.
8:46 a.m. WHO health executive says we are smack in middle of 1st wave: As Brazil and India struggle with surging coronavirus cases, the disease is "very much in a phase" of escalation, said Dr. Mike Ryan , executive director of the World Health Organization."Right now, we're not in the second wave. We're right in the middle of the first wave globally."
8:31 a.m. Study suggests U.S. hospitals may be hit harder than thought: COVID-19 patients in the U.S. are hospitalized longer and have higher ICU admission rates than patients in China, a new study by UC Berkeley and Kaiser Permanente researchers has found. Thus, observations from China don't likely pedict demand on U.S. hospitals, and the pandemic could hit American hospitals harder than was projected based on China's experience, the researchers found.
8:16 a.m. San Francisco confirms 13 new cases: San Francisco recorded 13 new cases of the coronavirus, bringing the number of known cases to 2,399, according to the Department of Public Health on Tuesday.
8:12 a.m. Inside a San Francisco homeless hotel: Supervisor Matt Haney has been working at a hotel where unhoused people shelter in place. On the Fifth & Mission podcast , he tells Heather Knight about his experience there, and says it's convinced him that more people on the streets need to be moved into vacant rooms. Click here to listen .
8:05 a.m. Schools are coming back, but what about teachers? Signalling a potential massive wave of resignations, one in 5 teachers say they are unlikely to go back to school if their classrooms reopen in the fall, a USA Today/Ipsos poll finds. Nearly two-thirds say they haven't been able to properly do their jobs in an educational system upended by the coronavirus.
7:57 p.m. Some restaurants doing better than ever: Amid a dire pandemic landscape, some Bay Area restaurants found ways to emerge resilient, to the point of better than ever, including those serving Silicon Valley tech workers missing their free lunches at the office. With expanded delivery, special menus, and creative operations, some see guarded optimism about survival as a victory already. Read the full story.
7:45 a.m. Older adults face loneliness, frustration, fear: Older adults in the Bay Area are navigating the new reality of the pandemic: trying to maintain a quality of life that makes living worth it while avoiding the coronavirus. Read the story about this reality and how they're getting creative by The Chronicle's Tony Bravo.
7:34 a.m. PPE costs mean many restaurants can't make a go of it: As if they didn't have enough financial woes, restaurants now need to stock up on masks, gloves and hand sanitizer. In the Bay Area, not only are the items in short supply, they are also pricey, to the point that the cost of could force many to close. Read The Chronicle's story .
7:27 a.m. Contra Costa County courts to reopen: All courts in Contra Costa County are reopening Tuesday, but with modifications. The criteria to enter court buildings includes temperatures checks, required face coverings and revised hours. Read a full list of guidelines and changes here .
7:22 a.m. Dow rises above 25,000: Stocks rose as the New York Stock Exchange resumed in-person trading. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 2.4%, crossing 25,000.
7:15 a.m. Also swept up in coronavirus fury — Prop. 13: The pandemic's vast financial damage is transforming the fight over a proposed change to California's sacrosanct Proposition 13 — already primed to be a fierce battle on November's ballot — into a struggle over California's future. The measure seeks to raise $12 billion a year for schools and local government by raising property taxes for many businesses. Read more here.
7:00 a.m. NY governor rings New York Stock Exchange bell: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday rang the New York Stock Exchange's opening bell to reopen the trading floor for the first time in two months, after the trading floor's closure due to the coronavirus pandemic. Traders now have to wear masks and stay 6 feet apart.
6:49 a.m. "No one I can be mad at other than the virus': The coronavirus pandemic has wrought high school graduation seasons like none before — drive-by diploma awarding, virtual commencements, digital yearbooks on Instagram. No ditch days, senior prom or cozy arm-around graduate photos. As one senior said "There's no one I can be mad at other than the virus." Read how Bay Area graduates are managing .
6:25 a.m. Trump mischaracterizes Newsom's absentee ballots plan : President Trump sent out a misleading tweet Tuesday morning about California Gov. Gavin Newsom's plan to send every registered voter in the state a mail ballot to reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus. "The Governor of California is sending Ballots to millions of people, anyone (…) living in the state, no matter who they are or how they got there, will get one," Trump said in a tweet. "That will be followed up with professionals telling all of these people, many of whom have never even thought of voting before, how, and for whom, to vote. This will be a Rigged Election. No way!" Newsom announced the absentee ballot effort earlier this month as a safety precaution to allow people to avoid packing into polling places on election day. Read more on Newsom's plan.
6:12 a.m. Nearly 100,000 dead in the US : The number of people in the United States who have died of COVID-19 reached 98,223, according to Johns Hopkins University. There were 1,662,768 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the nation.
Updates from Monday, May 25:
4:43 p.m. Marin County reports more cases: County public health officials reported 14 new cases of the coronavirus on Monday, bringing the county's case total to 417 cases. The death total remained unchanged at 14 on Monday, according to Marin Health & Human Services data.
4:18 p.m. Santa Clara County cases climb: County public health officials reported 36 new cases of the coronavirus on Monday, bringing the county's case total to 2,652 cases. The death total remained unchanged at 139 on Monday, according to the county's data dashboard .
4 p.m. U.S. ticks toward tragic milestone: The holiday weekend offered no reprieve for the nation's steady march toward a marker that reveals the extent of the coronavirus pandemic's human toll. As Memorial Day celebrations drew to an end, the nationwide death toll remained just shy of 100,000 lives lost, standing at 98,184 late Monday afternoon, according to tracking by Johns Hopkins University.
3:56 p.m. Bay Area keeps it mainly virtual for Memorial Day remembrances: It was a virtual Memorial Day Monday, with a coronavirus-ravaged Bay Area replacing in-person parades and cemetery services with videos and online commemorations of those who have given their lives in service to the country.Veterans groups still honored service members in non-public events, including a virtual memorial hosted by the USS San Francisco Memorial Foundation. Read more about the Bay Area's holiday.
3:46 p.m. Neighborhood 'guerrilla history' project attracts SF outdoor viewers: The Western Neighborhoods Project is an act of "guerrilla history" responsible for hundreds of historic photos showing up on telephone poles in San Francisco neighborhoods over the past two weeks. The often hastily-hung posters show streets and views over more than a century so passersby can get a then-and-now view of their neighborhood — the perfect outdoor museum for coronavirus times. Read the details.
3:35 p.m. LA records more than 1,000 cases in single day: Los Angeles County reported a second day of soaring new coronavirus infections, with 1,047 new cases as of Saturday evening, and 42 additional deaths. County health officials have recorded 46,018 COVID-10 cases in all, with a death toll of 2,116.
3:22 p.m. Holiday travel's down but we don't know how much: For the first time in 20 years, AAA did not issue a Memorial Day travel forecast, though an official predicted travel volume "is likely to set a record low" due to coronavirus restrictions. Accuracy of the economic data used to create the forecast has been undermined by COVID-19, AAA said. The group found last year that a near-record 43 million Americans traveled for Memorial Day.
3:10 p.m. Cases edge up in Alameda, Contra Costa counties as state eases restrictions: Alameda County reported 26 new coronavirus cases, bringing its total to 2,788, with 92 deaths as of Saturday. Contra Costa County reported 15 new cases and 1 death, bringing its total so far to 1,136 cases and 37 deaths. Bay Area numbers continued to climb as Gov. Gavin Newsom announced loosened restrictions for churches, retail and political gatherings Monday.
2:58 p.m. Doubt cast on European Union 'immunity' certification: The EU can't count on immunity certification when lifting border restrictions within the bloc, Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides told health ministers on Monday. Immunity certification isn't reliable, she said, emphasizing instead prevention measures like maintaining physical distancing and "robust" testing strategies.
2:30 p.m. Is there a way to help the Tenderloin? On the Fifth & Mission podcast , Sam Dennison of the anti-poverty nonprofit Faithful Fools tells host Heather Knight what City Hall should be doing to help people in the Tenderloin, where tents continue to crowd sidewalks and people are unable to maintain social distance. Click here to listen .
2:15 p.m. Protests allowed in California with limited size: California health officials on Monday said that while most large gatherings remain prohibited under the state's coronavirus stay-at-home order, in-person protests can occur as long as attendance is limited to 25% of an area's maximum occupancy — or up to 100 attendees. The directive came in new guidelines on protests and events involving political expression.
2:10 p.m. California says retail stores can open statewide if counties approve: The California state health department on Monday announced that if approved by county public health departments, all retail stores can reopen for in-store shopping under previous guidelines — but without having to take the step of asking state officials for approval. Counties may choose to keep tighter restrictions as most in the Bay Area already do.
1:15 p.m. Japan ends state of emergency: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe lifted a coronavirus state of emergency in Tokyo and four other remaining areas on Monday, ending the restrictions nationwide as businesses begin to reopen. Abe also unveiled a plan for a new stimulus package to support businesses hit by the pandemic .
12:17 p.m. England set to open most stores in June: The vast majority of shops in England can reopen in June as the government gradually eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Prime Minister Boris Johnson says outdoor markets and spacious car showrooms can open June 1 because likelihood of transmission is low there. Clothes stores, bookshops, tailors, auctioneers and other retailers can follow on June 15, if infection numbers continue to fall and businesses can be made "COVID-19 secure."
12:08 p.m. One partial explanation for partisan gulf on reopening: The staggering death toll from the coronavirus, now approaching 100,000, has touched every part of the U.S., but is most dramatic along the coasts, in major cities, across the industrial Midwest and in New York City. The devastation, in other words, has been disproportionately felt in blue America, which helps explain the partisan divide in the outlook on the coronavirus, the New York Times has found.
12:01 p.m. Counterproductive decisions due to fear of virus: Amid the high anxiety over COVID-19, fear is gripping not just people who are ill with the coronavirus but those in urgent need of other medical care. Even as the number of COVID-19 cases declines in many places, patients with cancer, heart disease and strokes, among others, are delaying or forgoing critical procedures that could keep them alive, the New York Times reports.
11:50 a.m. Poignant Memorial Day in nation's hot spot: New Yorkers marked Memorial Day with car convoys and small ceremonies instead of big parades, blending tributes to coronavirus victims and frontline workers with the traditional remembrance of the nation's war dead. Veterans wore masks and saluted while standing at social-distancing intervals at observances shrunk by virus precautions. Gov. Andrew Cuomo honored both veterans and essential workers on a day he called "especially poignant and powerful ."
11:35 a.m. California guidelines for churches call for written plan: Gov. Gavin Newsom's new guidelines for the reopening of places of worship call for them to create "a written, workplace-specific COVID-19 prevention plan at every location, perform a comprehensive risk assessment of all work areas, and designate a person at each workplace to implement the plan." The guidelines also detail measures like disinfecting and face coverings and state, "All workers and volunteers should wear gloves when handling items contaminated by body fluids," presumably a reference to communion distribution in Roman Catholic and other churches.
11:10 a.m. Newsom says churches can open with 25% of capacity: Churches in California can reopen for in-person services, provided the congregants are limited to 25% of building capacity or a maximum of 100 attendees, whichever is fewer, under new state guidelines Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled Monday. After three weeks, state and county health officials will "assess the impact of these imposed limits on public health" and make a determination on future services, the guidelines state. The guidelines come after President Trump declared places of worship as "essential" businesses allowed to be open during the coronavirus pandemic. Read The Chronicle's story with details.
10:59 a.m. WHO halts tests on drug Trump touted and took: The World Health Organization temporarily halted tests on hydroxychloroquine — the drug President Trump has touted without scientific evidence — in its Covid-19 drug trials because of safety concerns. The WHO on Monday announced "a temporary pause of the hydroxychloroquine arm within the Solidarity Trial," pending further review. The decision followed a Lancet-published study saying the drug was linked to an increased risk of death and heart ailments. Trump said he recently finished a two-week course of the drug.
10:34 a.m. Black religious leaders in Bay Area urge churches in their communities to stay closed. A group of black pastors and clergy members is calling on Bay Area churches in the black community to stay shut to curb the COVID-19 risk. Black communities in the Bay Area — and around the country — have been particularly hard hit by the coronavirus. A dozen of the leaders planned to gather Monday at San Francisco City Hall to publicize their call for more testing, medical services and educational support, as California anticipated imminent state guidelines for reopening places of worship.
10:10 a.m. New York frontline workers to get death benefits: New York's state and local governments will provide death benefits to the families of essential workers who died while fighting the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Monday. "We want to make sure that we remember them, and we thank our heroes of today, and they're all around us," Mr. Cuomo said at his daily news briefing.
9:49 a.m. Biden, in mask, lays wreath for Memorial Day: Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his wife Jill donned black face masks to visit to a veterans memorial, where he laid a wreath, in his home state of Delaware on Monday. It was Biden's first public appearance since mid-March. He has been observing coronavirus stay-at-home guidelines, campaigning from his home. He and the masked people with him contrasted with President Trump who has refused to don a face mask despite federal health guidance.
9:39 a.m. Suit hits Trump administration on food aid during pandemic: The Trump administration is defying Congress and harming some of the poorest and hungriest Californians by refusing to increase their food stamp benefits under a new federal law, advocates charged in a lawsuit. The government "is denying emergency food assistance to those who need it the most in the midst of this unparalleled economic and health catastrophe," said the suit filed in federal court in San Francisco. Read The Chronicle's story.
9:30 a.m. Newsom highlights measures taken to protect veterans. Gov. Gavin Newsom's Memorial Day message touted California's "proactive approach" to minimizing COVID-19 risks at the state's eight veterans homes. To date, three veterans in the homes have had confirmed cases of the virus and there are currently no active cases, according to the governor's office.The homes house 2,400 veterans; each has its own detailed emergency operations plan and "rigorous testing" is conducted, Newsom's statement said.
9:22 a.m. Pelosi slams Trump on coronavirus testing: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco , excoriated the Trump administration Monday for lack of a comprehensive national plan for testing to combat spread of the coronavirus. In a tweet and a joint statement with fellow Democrats, she called the administration's new test plan disappointing and wrote: "After six months and nearly 100,000 lives lost, the Trump Administration still does not have a serious plan for increasing testing to stop the spread of the virus."
9:13 a.m. Spare the Air alert despite coronavirus-driven emissions reductions: Soaring temperatures prompted the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to declare Memorial Day the first Spare the Air day of the year despite the coronavirus pandemic era's reduced traffic and lower-than-normal air pollution. Temperatures were anticipated at as much as 20 degrees higher than average over the next few days, with light winds, which could make any vehicle exhaust linger, officials said.
8:53 a.m. Bay Area holiday crowds so far mostly observe social distance: Authorities throughout the Bay Area continued warning outdoor afficionados to be vigilant about physical distance to inhibit spread of the coronavirus, after heavy crowds in parts of the Bay Area during the first two days of a beautiful three-day Memorial Day weekend mostly succeeded — to keep their distance from each other. One exception was Dolores Park on Saturday where sunbathers and picnickers crowded.
8:43 a.m. Trump threatens to yank GOP convention from North Carolina : President Trump is threatening to move the GOP's August nominating convention out of North Carolina unless the state allows a packed arena, despite the coronavirus pandemic. In a Monday morning tweet, he wrote he had insisted on Charlotte as a venue but, "Unfortunately, Democrat Governor, @RoyCooperNC is still in Shutdown mood & unable to guarantee that by August we will be allowed … ..full attendance in the Arena." Vice President Mike Pence told Fox News Monday the GOP would find another locale "if need be." Cooper's office said state officials are working with the GOP on convention decisions.
8:29 a.m. Post-pandemic life in San Francisco — who knows?: The pandemic's uncertainties — no vaccine, no idea whether the virus might mutate or fade, no unified national response — are different from a "typical" disaster, where a single event turns history on its head. Despite countless predictions about what lies ahead, it could be six months to a year before we have a sense of how cities will respond long term to a crisis that still is playing out. The Chronicle's John King explains .
8:20 a.m. Bay Area firms study range of drugs for the coronavirus: Gilead's antivirual drug Remdesivir is not the only treatment for the coronavirus being studied in the Bay Area. The scope of local research appears to be broadening, with a host of potential treatment raising the prospect that a major advancement against the coronavirus could come from the Bay Area. Read the story from J.D. Morris.
8:09 a.m. Trump administration delivers testing plan that relies on states: In a report to Congress, the Trump administration is pledging to buy 100 million swabs by the year's end for states to help expand coronavirus testing capacity. The report , delivered on the Sunday deadline lawmakers had set for officials to submit a strategy, was obtained by the Washington Post. It doubles down on the administration's stance that individual states should bear primary responsibility for carrying out diagnostic tests to help curb the pandemic.
7:58 a.m. Dry winter compounds pain of coronavirus in northern state: In a handful of farm-dependent counties along the Oregon border, the prospect of running out of water, as soon as next month, has arrived as the Klamath Basin region faces the hardship of the coronavirus outbreak. Many businesses have closed or cut hours during the pandemic, leaving little cushion for the imminent fallout of drought. Hundreds of farmers are at risk of having their irrigation water shut off — and watching their crops wither in the field. Read more from The Chronicle's Kurtis Alexander.
7:39 a.m. Trump lays traditional wreath in Arlington National Cemetery: President Trump performed the traditional, somber wreath-laying Monday at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington. Va., accompanied by Vice President Mike Pence and their wives. The first couples and the assembled dignataries and military members this year spaced themselves apart, but none appeared to be wearing face coverings to prevent spread of the coronavirus which is on the verge of claiming its 100,000th American.
- Hundreds of Bay Area beachgoers ticketed at Stinson Beach over Labor Day weekend
- Bay Area college student goes missing on California road trip
- ‘Our time will come’: When the SF Bay Area can expect a heat wave this summer
- Fans sold out across Bay Area even as region starts to cool down
- Calif.'s best-known whale dies from likely ship strike, washes up in SF Bay Area
- Man reportedly beheaded woman at Bay Area residence
- Smoke pushes into San Francisco Bay Area as Mosquito Fire threatens air quality
- Middle schooler shot by 12-year-old at Bay Area school, police say
- Missing Bay Area man found alive next to car that went over cliff
- A Bay Area man's car was found ablaze on Highway 101. He's still missing.
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