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Gov. Gavin Newsom’s latest plans for easing stay-at-home restrictions will potentially allow some parts of California to reopen at a faster rate than others if they can show the coronavirus has eased as a public health threat.

Newsom announced Monday that some retail stores across the state can reopen with modifications as early as Friday amid growing pressure to ease the stay-at-home order that has cratered the California economy.

But the virus is a bigger problem in some parts of California than others. Los Angeles County continues to be the epicenter of the crisis, with more than 1,250 deaths linked to COVID-19. The county accounts for nearly half of all hospitalizations.

Conversely, the number of infections in some rural and suburban counties is dramatically lower, four counties have seen no cases at all and more than a dozen counties have reported no deaths from the illness.

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