• Tesla is reopening production at its Fremont, California factory this week, according to a letter obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle.
  • The facility has been a point of contention between Tesla CEO Elon Musk and local officials, who argued the plant should be temporarily shuttered due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
  • Musk has been a vocal critic of government-issued guidance during the pandemic, and threatened to move production out of California if the factory was unable to restart.
  • “We have local support to get back to full production at the factory starting this upcoming week,” Tesla VP of Environmental, Health and Safety Laurie Shelby reportedly said in a letter to the plant’s 11,000 employees.
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Tesla will reportedly restart “full production” at its Fremont, California facility this week, according to a letter obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle from Tesla execs to employees.

“We have local support to get back to full production at the factory starting this upcoming week,” Laurie Shelby, Tesla’s vice president of environmental, health, and safety reportedly said in a letter to the plant’s 11,000 employees.

The Fremont facility became a major point of contention between Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Alameda County officials; Musk even threatened to move Tesla’s operations out of California over the dust up.

Musk has been a vocal critic of government-issued guidance during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. He’s called stay-at-home orders unconstitutional and fascist, and he’s risked imprisonment during the lockdown in order to reopen production.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Officials in Alameda County, where the Fremont plant is based, said on May 13 that production at Tesla’s Fremont location could potentially resume this week — an exception to the county’s rules during the pandemic for “Minimum Business Operations,” which mandate that businesses scale down operations to protect employees.

“We have agreed that Tesla can begin to augment their Minimum Business Operations this week in preparation for possible reopening as soon as next week,” the Alameda County Public Health Department said on May 13. “Next Monday, May 18th, marks two weeks following the May 4th Order loosening restrictions,” the statement said. “Provided that the data show progress with our COVID-19 indicators, during this two week period, we would allow additional approved activities for local businesses, including Tesla, as previously planned.”

Representatives for Tesla and the Alameda County Public Health Department did not respond to request for comment as of publishing.

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