Nail salon co-owner relieved stay-at-home order was lifted days after receiving power shutoff threats

Businesses that have somehow survived the pandemic are breathing a sigh of relief as California is no longer under Governor Gavin Newsom's strict stay-at-home order.

"Personal care services can open indoors with 25% capacity," announced Los Angeles County’s Director of Public Health, Dr. Barbara Ferrer just hours after Gov. Newsom lifted the order.

Effective immediately, nail salons like Laque in North Hollywood will be allowed to take clients indoors with restrictions.

"This gave us some kind of relief," said salon co-owner Marina Fermanyan.

Laque has been defying the shutdown for months. Fermanyan says last week, the city issued a citation warning that her power would be shut off Monday if she did not close her doors.

"When they informed us, they were going to shut off our water and power and prosecute us for criminal charges. That was a bit of a shock to us," she said.

LA County officials say the county's plan is to mirror the state's COVID-19 restrictions.


"The timing of today’s rushed announcement is curious at best," said attorney Fred Jones, who represents workers in the beauty industry.

He’s been pursuing legal action against Gov. Newsom for months, pushing for salons to reopen. Last week, some restaurants joined his lawsuits.

Jones says he believes his latest legal push could have played a role in Gov. Newsom's decision.

"We actually filed our first federal action against the governor back on May 12 and two weeks after we filed, he reopened our salons. We do have a history with this governor. He does tend to respond to pressure," said Jones.

According to the LA County Health Department, hair and nail salons can now open indoors at 25 percent with restrictions. Gyms can also open but only outside. Restaurants can begin serving customers outdoors this Friday.

As for Laque, co-owner Robert Torosian says reopening is a step in the right direction but he’s unsure if his business can survive.

"We haven’t made our mortgage payment since March. It’s just devastating. Unless there’s a miracle, we won’t be around," Torosian lamented.

LA County remains in the purple tier which means covid cases are still widespread. Officials urging everyone to continue to wear masks, socially distance and sanitize.

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