COVID-19 News: April 30, 2020

  • Governor Newsom announced the launch of a new portal to help parents, including essential workers and vulnerable families, find safe and reliable access to childcare options.  The new portal is available at ca.gov/childcare and enables parents to enter their location and the type of care they need, instantly receiving a list of local center-based and family child care programs. The list of open licensed child care programs will include health and safety information, age of children accepted, capacity, availability, hours, and contact information for the program and local Child Care Resource and Referral agency, which can answer general questions, including those about childcare subsidies.
  • Governor Newsom also announced a “hard close” of state and local beaches in Orange County after photos from last weekend showed thousands of people at the beach not observing physical distancing guidelines.  Newsom said he is working closely with Orange County local officials and beaches would be reopened soon if the situation improves.
  • The Governor also provided an update on COVID-19 numbers across the state:
    • 95 deaths in the last 24 hours–5% increase
    • 2% increase in positive COVID-19 tests
    • Hospitalization and ICU rates increased by less than 1%
    • We are seeing stabilizations, but the virus is still spreading and we need to keep up the momentum by continuing to stay home and practicing physical distancing.
  • The Governor had a Q&A session with reporters following his briefing:
    • Now that it has almost been a week since all those people gathered in Orange County beaches, have we seen data or outbreaks that suggest it was due to the crowded beaches and is that why you decided to close the beaches in Orange County? 
    • It’s only been 4 days since we saw those crowded beaches, but what is consistent and what the data is showing is that Orange County is still in the top 3 of counties with most hospitalization rates and positive cases.  That is why we are zeroing in on the problem and trying to put a stop to it before it spreads even more.
    • Modoc County is planning to reopen businesses tomorrow, are you aware of this and are you ok with it or are you prepared to push back?
    • I’m aware of it but have not seen the details yet, we have received letters from various local governments letting us know their desire to open sooner, however, we continue to be guided by the statewide stay-at-home orders which override any local orders.  We have the opportunity to start relaxing the statewide order in the coming weeks as long as we keep following directions right now. Look what happened in Singapore and China when they opened up their communities too quickly, more people are dying. The data is what will ultimately drive our decisions.
    • Some states are giving immunity to nursing homes, is California considering giving immunity to the state’s nursing homes?  Several are under investigation for their handling of COVID-19
    • I have no plans to make any announcements on that today, we have been having some initial conversations but not prepared to announce anything yet.  This is a very serious issue, we have a team of people working on it and as soon as we have more information, we’ll be sure to let you know.
    • We are seeing high rates of positive tests in homeless shelters, do you support or have plans to provide testing at homeless shelters?
    • Yes, we want to see it throughout the entire state.  We are prioritizing the most vulnerable Californians and we are helping support the efforts locally, regionally and across the state.  We have also acquired 12,647 hotel rooms in partnership with cities and counties through Project Roomkey for homeless that have been exposed to COVID-19 or tested positive.  Testing for homeless is absolutely a top priority.
    • Yesterday Elon Musk described the stay-at-home orders as fascist and having a great negative impact on business, what are your thoughts on this?
    • Good people can have different opinions, we continue to be guided by data and science, not headlines.
    • To listen to the Governor’s complete briefing, please click HERE.
  • DOF Notifies State Departments to Limit Spending
    • In yet another indication of pending shortfalls, the Department Of Finance (DOF) issued a memo today directing state agencies and departments to begin taking immediate steps to reduce state spending in face of the pandemic and associated economic downturn. Specifically, the state is asking departments to limit hiring, maintain the stoppage of non-essential travel, and to not  enter into any new service contracts or purchase agreements, except for purchases that support teleworking or that reduce the spread of the virus.
    • To read the complete letter from DOF, click here.
  • Today, the Governor issued the following executive order:
    • Executive Order N-58-20: Will allow adults to obtain marriage licenses via videoconferencing rather than in person as long as both adults are present, located within the State of California and can provide identification during the video conference. These provisions will be in place for 60 days.

For more information about COVID-19’s impact on California’s political and administrative landscape, visit our coronavirus webpage.

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2020-05-13T19:32:51-07:00April 30th, 2020|