Chamath Palihapitiya defends Elon Musk during Tesla production restart

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Social Capital CEO Chamath Palihapitiya defended the reopening of Tesla facilities by Elon Musk in defiance of local government orders, telling CNBC on Tuesday that local, state and government officials must be clearer during the establishment regulations during a pandemic.

“The federal government has this specific set of guidelines. People may think they fall within these guidelines. Then the states issue guidelines and on top of that, you have local regulations. When you put them all together, it’s incredibly confusing, “Palihapitiya said on Tuesday on” Squawk Box “.

“So if you’re a business owner and you’re trying to find a way to get back to work, because you think the risks are manageable, there’s no clear way to go and get the necessary permissions to do so, “he added.

Musk is working to quickly resume production at the company’s Fremont, Calif., Factory. Local television broadcasters showed cars of employees entering company parking lots on Monday. California Governor Gavin Newsom said Monday he did not know Tesla had restarted production before getting the green light from Alameda County officials. Musk tweeted confirmation that Tesla resumed production Monday afternoon and ventured to stop the local sheriff’s office.

Although a rush to return met with strong resistance from local authorities, Musk threatened on Saturday to withdraw Tesla from California in a dispute with Alameda County over the closure. Tesla also filed a lawsuit against the county, asking a federal court to invalidate orders from local authorities that prevented the automaker from resuming production.

Scott Haggerty, supervisor for Fremont district in Alameda county, told The New York Times on Saturday that county and Tesla leaders were working on a plant restart plan on May 18, when several Michigan automakers plan to reopen. But Musk went ahead and opened the Tesla factories on Monday. Tesla said in a blog on Saturday evening that it had developed new health and safety measures to protect its workers.

Palihapitiya said county officials should work with Musk to resume production in a consistent manner.

On Monday afternoon, the Alameda County Sheriff and the Alameda County Public Health Services Agency said in a statement: “We are actively sharing our feedback and understand that Tesla will submit a site-specific plan later during the day, according to California state guidelines and checklist. for manufacturing released May 7. We look forward to revisiting Tesla’s plan and reaching agreement on the protocol and timetable for reopening safely. “

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