ALTURAS, Calif. (AP) — Defiance came with biscuits and gravy as a remote California county became the first to buck Gov. Gavin Newsom’s stay-at-home order.
Modoc County moved Friday to reopen hair salons, churches, restaurants and the county’s only movie theater. There haven’t been any confirmed cases of COVID-19 among 9,000 residents, but the reopening came with strict social distancing limits. Businesses could only have half the patrons, and customers must stay 6 feet (1.8 meters) apart.
The county is an outlier in every sense of the word. It is tucked into the far northeast near the Oregon border, hundreds of miles from the capitol of Sacramento and even further politically from the Democrat-controlled state; it’s a place where seven in 10 voted for Donald Trump in 2016.