Elon Musk announced Saturday he plans to move Tesla to either Texas or Nevada — after the electronic carmaker was told it could not reopen Friday by California health officials.
“Frankly, this is the final straw. Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately. If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependent on how Tesla is treated in the future,” Musk raged on Twitter.
Musk also said that Tesla is filing a lawsuit against Alameda County, whose health officials prohibited the opening despite Gov. Gavin Newsom easing lockdown measures statewide.
“Tesla is filing a lawsuit against Alameda County immediately. The unelected & ignorant ‘Interim Health Officer’ of Alameda is acting contrary to the Governor, the President, our Constitutional freedoms & just plain common sense!” Musk tweeted.
Musk’s Twitter rampage comes after Newsom announced manufacturing could resume in the state, and the company said it planned to resume “limited operations” at its Fremont plant Friday. However, Newsom’s orders do not override orders from county-level officials — who said they did not give “the green light.”
Alameda County has a shelter-in-place order effective through May 31, according to its website.
“In light of Governor Newsom’s statement earlier today approving manufacturing in California, we will aim to restart production in Fremont tomorrow afternoon,” Musk wrote in a Thursday night email to employees.
Musk has repeatedly voiced his frustrations over California’s “fascist” handling of the coronavirus and the closure of Tesla’s factories.
Alameda County health officials responded to Musk’s announcement with a statement saying the county hopes to “come to an agreement” with Tesla soon.
“[Alameda County has] been communicating directly and working closely with the Tesla team on the ground in Fremont. This has been a collaborate, good faith effort to develop and implement a safety plan that allows for reopening while protecting the health and well-being of the thousands of employees who travel to and from work at Tesla’s factory,” officials wrote.
Health officials said that Tesla “has been responsive” to health guidance.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott was apparently watching the standoff, retweeting Musk with the “eyeballs” emoji.
But residents in Alameda’s neighboring county, San Joaquin, also reached out to Musk with a bid to land a larger presence from the carmaker.
“[San Joaquin] been sensible & reasonable, whereas Alameda has been irrational & detached from reality. Our castings foundry and other faculties in San Joaquin have been working 24/7 this entire time with no ill effects. Same with Giga Nevada,” Musk replied to an account suggesting the carmaker move to San Joaquin County.
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