Elon Musk Reopens Tesla Fremont Factory Despite County's Rules


On Tuesday, President Donald Trump was the latest USA government official to weigh in on an ongoing conflict between the company's CEO Elon Musk and authorities in Alameda County, who have implemented restrictions against Tesla's Fremont factory reopening.

"Tesla is restarting production today against Alameda County rules", Musk tweeted just before 5 p.m.to his 34 million followers.

"I will be on the line with everyone else", the chief executive officer said in a tweet Monday.

"I agree with Elon Musk", Mnuchin told CNBC, referencing the Tesla co-founder and CEO's ongoing push to reopen its Bay Area factory.

Last week, following an announcement from California Governor Gavin Newsom about starting the process to reopen the state, Tesla started telling employees that they are reopening the Fremont factory and that some of them would be expected to return to work as soon as Friday.

Tesla, which also has a vehicle plant in Shanghai and is building another in Berlin, on Saturday sued the county, alleging it had violated California's constitution by defying Newsom's orders allowing manufacturers to reopen.

A spokeswoman for the Fremont Police Department on Monday said her office was enforcing the lockdown order at the direction of the health department and had been advised that the county is working with Tesla directly.

Electric carmaker Tesla has resumed production at its Fremont, Calif., plant - in defiance of local health authorities.

That argument has been explained in more detail in a recent blog post on Tesla's website.

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In response, Musk stated his company would leave Northern California and open up a new headquarters in Nevada or Texas.

"I agree with Elon Musk", Mnuchin, the top USA economic official, told CNBC television. "From the State's very first shelter-in-place order, national critical infrastructure, including vehicle manufacturing like Tesla's Fremont factory, was considered vital and given permission to continue operating".

The same day, the company said in a blog that it planned to reopen.

"Frankly, this is the final straw", the often-controversial Mr Musk wrote in a now-deleted tweet.

"It's either we feed our families or go hungry at this point", said one of The Verge's sources who made a decision to return to work in the Tesla factory.

While the state has eased restrictions to allow manufacturing, Alameda County, where the Fremont plant is located, has not. He said Tesla is "up and running" and he feels like health guidelines aren't being followed.

The lack of production in Fremont has cut off Tesla's revenue and is a big financial strain. The Fremont facility is Tesla's only US vehicle assembly plant, and the company would lose critical production if it shut down the plant to move equipment.

A sign bearing Tesla's logo in California's Silicon Valley is pictured in 2018.