Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Search SCCGOV Main Portal

Mandatory Directive on Capacity Limitations

*Please confirm that your facility may open under the State Order.  Where there is a difference between the local County Order and the State Order, the more restrictive order must be followed.  The State also has specific guidance for certain facilities that must be followed in addition to this mandatory directive.*

Information on the State’s Order and State guidance is available at covid19.ca.gov.

Issued: November 15, 2020
Revised: November 28, 2020
Effective Date: November 30, 2020 at 12:01 a.m.

On August 28, 2020, the State issued a Statewide Public Health Officer Order (“State Order,” available here) and the Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“Blueprint,” available here). The State Order and Blueprint establish statewide restrictions applicable to each “tier” to which counties are assigned.

Businesses must follow the mandatory requirements in this Directive and any other applicable County Health Officer Directive, the County Health Officer’s Revised Risk Reduction Order issued on October 5, 2020, the applicable restrictions under the State Order and Blueprint, the State’s COVID-19 Industry Guidance documents, and any applicable health and safety regulations.  Where there is a difference between these rules, the most restrictive rule must be followed.

This Directive establishes the County Health Officer’s rules on capacity.  The risk of COVID-19 transmission increases when there is a higher number and density of people present at a facility, particularly when indoors.  To reduce this risk, the County Health Officer has established limitations on the number of people who can be present at a facility at any given time.  These limitations are based on the capacity of the facility and/or the overall number of people who may be present at any given time.  These limitations vary depending on the risk of COVID-19 transmission associated with the type of use. 

This Directive is mandatory, and failure to follow it is a violation of the Health Officer’s Order issued on October 5, 2020 (“Order”).

Mandatory Capacity Limitations

  1. Outdoor capacity limitations

    1. All gatherings and businesses must limit outdoor capacity to allow everyone to easily maintain at least six feet of physical distance from everyone not in their household at all times.  

    2. Outdoor gatherings may not exceed 100 people under any circumstances.

    3. Industry-specific directives may identify additional requirements to limit capacity.

  2. Indoor capacity limitations

The following capacity limitations apply to indoor operations: 

Business/Entity/Activity Type Capacity Limitation
Gyms and Fitness Centers Indoor operation prohibited, including indoor swimming pools, indoor hot tubs, and saunas
Gatherings (e.g., movie showings, political events, weddings, funerals, worship services) Indoor operation prohibited
Museums, Zoos, and Aquariums Indoor operation prohibited​
Grocery Stores, Drugstores, and Pharmacies 25% capacity
All Other Retail Stores 10% capacity
Shopping Centers 10% capacity (total indoor capacity for the shopping center as a whole is calculated by adding together the Reduced Maximum Capacity for each individual tenant business of the shopping center).
Common areas and food courts must remain closed.
Restaurants Indoor service and indoor queueing/waiting for takeout prohibited.

(Outdoor service limited to 100 people.)
Bars, Breweries, Distilleries Indoor service and indoor queueing/waiting for takeout prohibited.

(Outdoor service prohibited without a meal.)
Wineries Indoor service and indoor queueing/waiting for takeout prohibited.
Smoking Lounges Indoor operation prohibited
Family Entertainment Centers and Other Entertainment/Recreation Facilities (e.g. Shooting Ranges, Adult Entertainment Establishments) Indoor operation prohibited
Cardrooms Indoor operation prohibited (indoors and outdoors)
Lodging Facilities In common areas, limit the number of people entering the facility to allow people to easily maintain at least six feet of physical distance from another at all times; specific use areas (e.g., gyms and retail) are subject to specific capacity limitations in this Directive
Personal Care Businesses (e.g., hair salons and barber shops; nail care; body art, tattoo, and piercing shops; esthetician, skin care, and cosmetology services; electrology, waxing, threading, and other hair removal services) 10% capacity
Limited Services (e.g., laundromats; dry cleaners; pet grooming) 10% capacity
Construction Sites Limit the number of people entering the site to allow people to easily maintain at least six feet of physical distance from one another at all times; any indoor areas accessible to the public are limited to 10% capacity.
Public Transit Limit the number of people entering the vehicle to allow people to easily maintain at least six feet of physical distance from one another at all times; any indoor waiting areas accessible to the public are limited to 10% capacity.
Agriculture, Food Packing, and Food Processing Facilities Limit the number of people entering the facility to allow people to easily maintain at least six feet of physical distance from one another at all times; any indoor areas accessible to the public are limited to 10% capacity.
Healthcare Facilities Limit the number of people entering the facility to allow people to easily maintain at least six feet of physical distance from one another at all times unless it would interfere with provision of care.
All Other Facilities (including Governmental Facilities) Any indoor areas accessible to the public are limited to 10% capacity.

Metering Requirement

3. System to “Meter” the Number of People in a Facility

  1. All indoor facilitiesthat members of the public are allowed to enter must develop and implementwritten procedures to “meter” or track the number of persons entering and exiting the facility to ensure that the maximum capacity for the facility or area is not exceeded. For example, an employee of the facility may be posted at each entrance to the facility to perform this function.  The written procedures must also ensure all members of the public entering the facility who are required to wear face coverings are wearing them properly to cover both their nose and mouth.
  2. The facility must provide a copy of its written “metering” procedures to an Enforcement Officer upon request and disclose the number of members of the public currently present in the facility.

Calculating Maximum Capacity

  1. Calculating indoor capacity limitations

    1. Capacity limitations apply to every room or area in a facility in which members of the public spend time or engage in regulated activities.  Rooms or areas that are subject to capacity limitations are considered “capacity-limited rooms/areas.” 

    2. Capacity limitations must be based on the normal maximum occupancy for each capacity-limited room/area that has a posted maximum occupancy. If there is not a posted normal maximum occupancy, capacity limitations must be based on the square footage of each capacity-limited room/area. 

    3. Gyms, fitness facilities, and family entertainment centers must use gross square footage for each capacity-limited room/area (when indoor operation is allowed).  All other facilities must use net square footage for each capacity-limited room/area.

    4. Capacity limitations establish the maximum number of people who may be present, including both members the public and personnel.  

    5. For assistance in calculating capacity limitations and answers to frequently asked questions, please visit sccgov.org/covidcapacity.

Signage

  1. Signage Requirements

    1. Reduced Maximum Capacity signs must be posted for each capacity-limited room/area that is subject to a specific percentage capacity limitation identified in Section 2 of this Directive.

    2. Each sign must clearly state the maximum number of people who may be inside that particular capacity-limited room/area at the same time under this Directive.  A template of the Reduced Maximum Capacity sign is available here.

    3. Each room/area must have one Reduced Maximum Capacity sign posted at each entrance.  The signs must be clearly visible to anyone entering the room.

    4. Reduced Maximum Capacity signs must be updated to reflect any changes in the allowable capacity.

    5. For assistance in completing Reduced Maximum Capacity signage, please visit www.sccgov.org/covidcapacity.

Stay Informed

For answers to frequently asked questions about capacity limitations and other topics, please see the FAQ page. Please note that this Directive may be updated. For up-to-date information on the Health Officer Order, visit the County Public Health Department’s website at www.sccgov.org/coronavirus.

 

​​​​​​​​​​
Last updated: 11/28/2020 5:27 PM