June 2 2020 –Carlsbad, CA–I’d like to start today’s update by addressing the protests over the past several days across the nation and here in San Diego (including Carlsbad). I want to assure you that the City of Carlsbad Police Department is committed to protecting our community’s safety while facilitating a safe environment for demonstrators to peacefully exercise their rights. Vandalism and violence of any sort will not be tolerated. Now more than ever, this is a time for working together and listening to each other with respect. We all have a role to play in creating a better future.
COVID-19 updates since Friday Carlsbad continues to have 76 total reported cases, same as Friday, however the number of active cases has gone from seven to five. As a reminder, the county doesn’t report out on active cases by city. We calculate this number by counting 14 days from the day a case was reported. This timeframe is a bit of a moving target, with the CDC now recommending 10 days, but we’re staying with 14 for now to be conservative.
As of yesterday’s report from the county,
- 3,929 tests were reported by the county Sunday. 96 or 2% were positive. The new total number of cases is 7,481.
- The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive tests is 3%.
- 1,324 or 17.7% of cases have required hospitalization.
- 385 or 5.1% of all cases had to be admitted to an intensive care unit.
- Three additional deaths were reported over the weekend, bringing the new total to 269.
Here is the latest set of charts and graphs from the county.
Confirmed cases by cityMap showing case numbers in the countyCases by ZIP code
San Diego cases San Diego County case portalInteractive dashboard
California cases NEW California data portalInteractive dashboardCOVID-19 cases and nursing homes
U.S. and global cases Global and national case numbers
More local control coming Friday, the governor held a news conference where he provided an update on how the state has met key criteria to allow safe reopening. This includes having enough hospital and ICU capacity, availability of testing, personal protective equipment supplies and the ability to trace contacts of those testing positive. Here is a link to the slides from this presentation.
This presentation led up to an announcement that moving forward, the state would leave it to the counties to decide when to move further into stage three of the reopening. The state will still provide guidance on how to reopen various sectors of the community. Once guidance is available, counties may decide when to proceed.
Stages, phases and steps The state road map has four stages of reopening, with activities and businesses grouped according to risk. As things have evolved, some of the activities have moved from their original stage definition. For example, haircuts used to be stage three, but now they’re stage two. It’s all a little confusing, I know. We have updated our “dashboard” of what’s open and what’s not to show an alphabetized list by type (business, recreation, personal care, etc.) rather than by stage.
We are also getting close to a time when it will be easier to just list what is not open rather than what is. In the meantime, please keep in mind that everything that has reopened is subject to very strict conditions and safeguards. Please be patient as you return to your favorite stores, coffee shops and the like. You could need to wait outside for a few minutes, you’ll need to be mindful of keeping your distance from others when waiting in line and you’ll need to cover your face.
New public health order As expected, the county issued a new public health order that goes into effect at midnight tonight. It includes the updated rules that allow lounging and sunbathing at the beach starting Tuesday, June 2 (still no parking, no gathering, etc.).
It also includes a new requirement for people staying at hotels and short-term vacation rentals to verify they are traveling for an essential business or need to stay because they cannot self-isolate or quarantine at home. Following reports that some were operating outside of these rules, the city has been in touch with all of our hotels and rental operators to make sure they are aware of the county health order.
Small business loan program The City of Carlsbad has launched its small business loan program. The first step is for business owners to fill out a pre-qualifying questionnaire, available on the city’s website.
The City Council approved an Economic Recovery and Revitalization Initiative May 5 that dedicates a minimum of $4.4 million for a business loan program. The City Council has approved two loans types.
- Microloans of between $5,000 and $10,000 for businesses with $2 million or less in gross revenue or 15 or fewer employees.
- Small business recovery loans of between $10,000 and $25,000 for businesses with $3 million or less in gross revenue and 50 or fewer employees.
Both loans types include scaled interest rates depending on how quickly the loan can be repaid. Neither loan type is forgivable. All applicants must hold a valid business license with the City of Carlsbad as of March 1, 2020, and be in good standing.
The City Council Ad Hoc Subcommittee on Business Revitalization continues to work on additional ways the city can support the recovery of our business community affected by COVID-19. More updates to come on that.
Free legal assistance The San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program is offering free legal assistance to some small businesses and nonprofits that have been affected by the pandemic.
Attorneys from major law firms will be providing free, 45-minute consultations on a variety of issues stemming from the COVID-19 crisis. These include topics like labor and unemployment issues, questions surrounding reopening procedures, bankruptcy, economic injury disaster loans and grants.
If a business or organization’s legal questions can’t be resolved during the consultation, the volunteer lawyer program may be able to provide additional representation. For more information about the clinic, visit its website. Attorneys can sign up to participate at sdvlp.org/volunteer.
Upcoming meetings and announcements The county will resume its MWF news briefing schedule today at 2:30 p.m. We’ll monitor as usual and report out on any changes or updates. Later today the city will hold a Traffic & Mobility Commission meeting, starting at 3 p.m. Tomorrow our City Council meets at 3 p.m. to consider the draft annual budget.
As always, you can keep follow updates on our social media and COVID-19 website. Please keep doing what you’re doing, Carlsbad. We are getting through this and will continue to move forward together.
Scott Chadwick City Manager
May 29, 2020 –Another day brings another small step forward in the gradual reopening of Carlsbad. Yesterday, the county updated its health order to allow people to attend places of worship and get their hair cut. Here are the details:
Places of worship
- Limit attendance to 25% of building capacity or 100 attendees, whichever is lower. Face coverings are strongly recommended at all times.
- Discourage staff, congregants, visitors, etc., from engaging in handshakes, hugs and similar greetings that break physical distance.
- Discourage or modify locations of people singing and other activities that cause the spread of exhaled droplets.
- Shorten length of services.
- Close or restrict common areas, establish directional hallways and passageways for foot traffic, if possible, and designate separate routes for entry and exit to help maintain physical distancing.
- Discontinue offering self-service food and beverages.
- See the full guidelines here.
Hair salons and barbershops
- Temperature check or health screenings for employees at beginning and end of shifts.
- Services must be limited to those that can be provided with both the worker and customer wearing face coverings for the entirety of the service.
- Frequently disinfect commonly used surfaces.
- Amenities, including magazines, books, coffee, water, self-serve stations (unless touchless), and other items for customers, must be removed from reception areas.
- Hair services only – does not include other salon services like eyebrows, eyelashes, facials, shaves and nails.
- See the full guidelines here.
Other updates The county’s update also included one-on-one sports instruction, like tennis and golf lessons. These are now allowed, but 6-foot distances must be maintained, and participants must wear face coverings.
The state is expected to announce guidance for summer camps and child care later today.
Case numbers Carlsbad’s case numbers are holding steady at 73 for a week now. The county reported 85 new cases yesterday for a new total of 6,882 cases overall. About 2% of the tests countywide were positive. This is good.
No new deaths were reported yesterday, however that could be a function of the holiday weekend, according to county officials. In previous weeks we have seen larger losses of life reported on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, once all the weekend data became available. This is just another example of why, as much as everyone wants to see the daily numbers, trends over time are much more meaningful than day to day fluctuations in the case numbers.
A key metric being monitored closely is the capacity of our local health care system. In San Diego County 385 COVID-19 patients are currently hospitalized, including 160 in intensive care. The availability of ICU beds, not just hospital beds, is critical because those who require ventilators and other more advanced care need to be in the ICU. The chart below shows our county’s current utilization of ICU beds:
Here is a link to the charts and graphs from yesterday.
- City cases Confirmed cases by cityMap showing case numbers in the countyCases by ZIP code
- San Diego cases San Diego County case portalInteractive dashboard
- California cases California data portalInteractive dashboardCOVID-19 cases and nursing homes
- U.S. and global cases Global and national case numbers
DMV servicesYesterday the state announced the reopening of 46 more DMV field offices, but, alas, not the Oceanside location. Chula Vista, Poway, San Ysidro, Clairemont and El Cajon were added to the list of San Diego locations, joining San Marcos and Hillcrest, which opened a couple of weeks ago.
Services are pretty limited – just those that can only be completed in a DMV field office, including:
- Paying registration for a vehicle impounded because of registration-related issues.
- Reinstating a suspended or revoked driver license.
- Applying for a reduced-fee or no-fee identification card.
- Processing commercial driver license transactions.
- Applying for a disabled person parking placards (this can also be done by mail using the REG 195 form).
- Adding an ambulance certificate or firefighter endorsement to a driver license.
- Verifying a transit training document to drive a transit bus.
- Processing DMV Express customers for REAL ID transactions, if time and space allow.
Driving tests have not yet resumed, much to the dismay of our local teens for sure.
Many DMV workers from other field offices have been redeployed to support the DMV’s “virtual office.” Online DMV services have come a long way – I encourage you to check out the website. Before you do, make sure your deadline hasn’t been changed. Many have. You can see the full list here.
Carlsbad students get national recognition A few days ago National Merit Scholarships were awarded, including three Carlsbad students:
- Kimberly A. Cheung, Pacific Ridge School
- Samantha S. Low, Sage Creek High School
- Nathan S. Nash, Cathedral Catholic High School
These outstanding students will each get a $2,500 college scholarship and significant bragging rights.
For those not familiar with this program, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation is a non-profit founded in the 1950s Cold War era, when there was concern about the U.S. lagging behind in math and science. Through a national competition drawing nearly 1.5 million entrants, students selected for recognition go through a years-long process, starting by scoring in the top 1% on preliminary college entrance exams. From there they must meet a number of other stringent criteria to make it through the semifinals to become finalists. In the 2020 program, only 15,000 became finalists, and only 2,500 ultimately were chosen for merit scholarships.
More (and more) virtual events and programs Our creative and dedicated city staff have added so many new virtual events, performances, sports demonstration videos, lectures and story times, we needed to completely reorganize our web portal to accommodate them! Check out the new and improved site here. We’ve now broken out activities by topic and by age, although many of our so-called kids’ activities could easily be considered “mindfulness exercises,” if you asked me.
Finally, I’d like to thank you for your kindness and patience as we continue along this uncharted path. Every day we get encouraging emails and posts on the city’s social media channels. I want you to know I share these with our staff, and they really make a difference. I’m also a big believer in continuous improvement, so please also keep up the tough questions and, yes, even the complaints. It’s all fair game. I know it sounds like a cliché, but we really are here to serve you. Your honest feedback keeps us on our toes, and that’s a good thing.
If you know someone who might like to sign up for these updates, they can do that on the city’s website. In between my updates, the city keeps its social media and COVID-19 website updated too.
Scott Chadwick City Manager
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