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Despite not advancing to the state’s yellow COVID-19 reopening tier this week, Monterey County still has one of the lowest case rates in the greater Bay Area, the county’s top health official said Tuesday.

The county’s 2.6 new cases per day per 100,000 residents, adjusted for Monterey County’s testing capacity, is the fourth-lowest among the nine counties in the greater Bay Area region that have yet to advance to the yellow tier, sitting behind Santa Cruz, Santa Clara and Sonoma counties.

That figure is a slight increase from the 1.9 cases per 100,000 the county recorded last week, according to county Health Officer and Public Health Director Dr. Edward Moreno, and does not meet the 2 cases per 100,000 residents required for a move to the yellow tier.

Still, Moreno told the county’s Board of Supervisors on Tuesday that continued vaccination and the use of face coverings will likely keep that case rate stable for the foreseeable future.

“In order to get to yellow tier, we’ll have to have more people vaccinated, we’ll have to have more continue to use face coverings,” Moreno said. “Even in situations where the state says you can remove your face covering, there are a lot of people who still feel comfortable wearing face coverings and that will probably contribute to keeping the transmission low.”

Moreno told the board last week that the county was on pace for the yellow tier, needing two consecutive weeks with a case rate below 2 per 100,000 in addition to an overall test positivity rate below 2 percent and a positivity rate below 2.2 percent for the county’s hardest-hit neighborhoods.

Also helping to keep transmission low, Moreno said Tuesday, will be teenagers’ continuously expanding access to vaccinations.

Roughly 38 percent of the county’s 16- and 17-year-olds have received at least one dose of vaccine compared to 63 percent of all county residents age 16 and up.

All county residents ages 16-49 became eligible for the vaccine on April 15. In addition, the state is expected to make residents ages 12-15 eligible for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine as early as Thursday. That will make roughly 24,000 county residents newly eligible for the vaccine, according to Moreno.

“We continue to make progress in terms of the proportion of individuals that are vaccinated … and as the eligibility for vaccine continues to move into the younger age groups, we hope to see an increase in vaccine uptake among the young population as well,” he said.