- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 18, 2022

California will wind down its COVID-19 state of emergency by the end of February.

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the move Monday, saying that he wants to keep the emergency order in place through the winter so the state’s health care system has the resources to address any potential surge.

“The State of Emergency was an effective and necessary tool that we utilized to protect our state, and we wouldn’t have gotten to this point without it,” Mr. Newsom said in a statement. “With the operational preparedness that we’ve built up and the measures that we’ll continue to employ moving forward, California is ready to phase out this tool.”

Once the pandemic ends, California will shift to its “SMARTER Plan” to address any COVID-related challenges going forward, the governor’s office said.

The plan advocates for people to stay up to date on booster shots, get tested and wear a mask when necessary, and follow the latest news on new variants that may come along.

California is one of a handful of states that still have active COVID emergencies.

Delaware renewed its COVID emergency order just last week.

Texas renewed its own COVID emergency declaration last month, while Kansas extended emergency powers via legislation through January 2023 and West Virginia has maintained its original public health emergency from March 2020.

Washington state’s COVID emergency will end on Oct. 31, while Rhode Island and Illinois will have their COVID emergencies active through Nov. 11 and Nov. 14, respectively, unless they are renewed.

Connecticut will end its emergency on Dec. 28.

New Mexico let its COVID emergency expire last week.

For more information, visit The Washington Times COVID-19 resource page.

• Matt Delaney can be reached at mdelaney@washingtontimes.com.

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