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With the Shelter in Place order, law enforcement say they’re more in education mode, than enforcement. In Lake County the Public Health Officer ordered the shelter in place last week, then put in more restrictions closing down lakes and other local waterways and lodging facilities unless healthcare workers, COVID-19 emergency workers, construction workers of critical infrastructure and permanent residents living in vacation homes before March 9th. The public health officer also released more measures yesterday to clarify the previous orders and some local law enforcement say people coming into the area from elsewhere make restrictions even tighter. The Sherriff says there were loads of cars at local motels and folks standing close together at docks fishing, and not following social distancing guidelines. Many people reportedly coming form the Bay Area where coronavirus numbers are climbing.

A generous donation by a local vineyard to help people in Napa, Mendocino and Lake Counties affected by the virus. Andy Beckstoffer of Beckstoffer Vineyards says they’re donating $100,000 by way of $300 checks, 100 of them per county. It will be up to each County’s Chamber of Commerce to decide what individuals and families get the money which will mostly be for hourly workers who have no job now because of layoffs from COVID-19. That will include hotel housekeepers, dishwashers, waitstaff, busboys and others. The checks will be made out to those chosen, not to Chambers of Commerce or other organizations and there will be no administrative costs or fees.

The Mendocino County Public Health Officer is issuing a revised Health Order so it follows the state’s more closely. The state issued its order last Thursday requiring all Californians to shelter in place, except for essential needs and to maintain or access critical systems or services. The State and Local Health Order says Sheltering-In-Place means staying at home and do not leave unless necessary to slow the spread of the virus. They warn to limit your essential activities as much as you can, leaving only to get food, see your doctor, fill a prescription, go to work if it’s defined as essential, to get your children to and from childcare or help others you care for to get the things they need to live, be healthy and stay safe.

A meeting of the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors to talk about a possible hemp ordinance to be placed in the Mendocino County code. It would also permit a temporary pilot program to grow industrial hemp in parts of the County. It comes after the board temporarily banned cultivating industrial hemp to protect marijuana from cross-pollination and so staffers could get information and recommendations from regional counties about possible regulations and ordinances. Hemp is legal in California and at the federal level, but there’s been concern about possible damage to cannabis. The meeting tomorrow is online with some county staff at the chambers in Ukiah. There will be no in-person public participation to reduce the risk of exposure to the coronavirus.

The state’s been working to get more protective gear for healthcare workers and first responders, with work across the globe and locally to get the equipment shipped her. The state’s trying to get 1 billion sets of gloves, hundreds of millions of gowns, surgical masks and face shields. The Gov. Gavin Newsom remarked yesterday it would take, a heroic effort to get the personal protection equipment for the expected surge in COVID-19 cases. The state’s looking to charter flights from China with gear aboard, there’s talk about 3-D printing of surgical masks and working with other states to get better deals on equipment and supplies. The Los Angeles Mayor says an Anheuser-Busch beer plant in Van Nuys is making hand sanitizer and another in Baldwinsville, New York, will be doing the same.

All jury trials are shut down for two months in Superior Court in Calif due to the virus. The Chief Justice announced the two month suspension yesterday. The Governor announced the closure of all parking lots at beaches and state parks to prevent the spread of the virus after reports of massive amounts of people on the beach and in the mountains the first weekend of the statewide shelter in place order. The state’s most popular beaches in Malibu, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco would be closed to curb crowds. And parks in Marin County were also closed and access restricted to the Santa Monica Mountains in Los Angeles County. The stay at home order did allow for outdoor exercise, but social distancing has to be maintained.

A Navy hospital ship in San Diego has sailed to Los Angeles to treat non-coronavirus patients. A 1,000-bed ship, the Mercy should get there in less than a week with doctors able to perform surgery aboard the ship which contains nine operating rooms. They can also treat intensive care patients.

The Gov. Gavin Newsom says no to releasing violent inmates due to the coronavirus pandemic but has not ruled out other relief so the state’s homelessness crisis doesn’t get worse. An inmate and five employees in the state’s prison system were positive for coronavirus, so pressure was applied apparently to release some of the state’s 123,000 convicts early. The Governor says he’s got no interest in releasing violent criminals from prisons and says he’s not going to use the crisis as an excuse to create another crisis.  Some inmate advocates and lawyers say the prisoners should be released so there’s enough space for social distancing.

Intro: Local groups are springing up across the state to produce homemade face masks for medical providers if they run out of the real thing – but some experts say the masks may do more harm than good. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says on its website that health-care providers might use homemade masks as a last resort, but Ken Zinn, with National Nurses United says the N-95 respirator is the minimum protection necessary for all health-care workers.

:11  “They downgraded the guidance to allow hospitals to say to nurses and other front-line workers, ‘Well, just wear a scarf or a bandanna.’ This is absurd. Scarves, bandannas, surgical masks, none of them keep front-line health-care workers safe.”

Tag:  A 2015 study published in the British Journal of Medicine cautioned against cloth face masks, saying they may increase infections because they retain too much moisture and don’t filter out enough particles. Some doctors have warned that they may give a false sense of security. On Monday, North America’s Building Trades Unions announced that its member groups will be donating N-95 respirator masks to local hospitals around the nation.


Second Cut: Shelley Blume is with Coachella Valley Mask Makers, which is handing out kits that enable people to make paper-cloth masks with a glue gun. She says the group hopes to make a thousand masks a day, then sanitize them and make them available to local hospitals.

:10  “So these masks are not meant to replace the personal-protection equipment mask. They are to supplement medical staff who otherwise would not have a mask.”

Tag:  Hospitals are scrambling to see if they can accept the masks and figure out under what circumstances they might be used. Tenet Healthcare, which runs 13 hospitals in the state, says it will accept handmade items once the CDC issues guidelines. The California Department of Public Health on Monday declined to give guidance on homemade masks, directing people to call their local hospital to inquire.

There’s been $100 million set aside in emergency grant funding for California counties, continuums of care, and California’s 13 biggest cities for the homeless.  The Governor signed a Senate Bill allocating $100 million for the homeless population to be protected from coronavirus, getting homeless people off the street and into immediate housing. The 13 largest cities getting about $43 million and the state’s 58 counties will receive $27 million. And the state’s 44 continuums of Care will receive about $30 million dollars. The money can be used for medical services like testing and other services, like shelters, supplies and equipment for emergency shelter operations.

Another measure to make sure coronavirus doesn’t spread, even though there are no confirmed cases in Lake County… Lakeport announced the closure of all parks. Starting today until further notice, the parks are closed including Library Park and its public park, the public restrooms there and the dog park at Westside Community Park. This follows the city of Clearlake closing Redbud Park and Thompson Harbor, including the boat launch ramps, parking lot and other recreation facilities. Same in Sonoma County, parks closed after a busy weekend on beaches. The County ordered all parks in the city, county, state and federal parks closed, and parks on school grounds and beaches. But those that are paved, multiuse pathways outside park boundaries are open, plus the Joe Rodota Trail and the West County Trail. No change at Lake Mendocino.

Some nurses take to the streets in Santa Rosa because of a lack of masks as they tackle COVID-19. The nurses are employed at Kaiser Permanente and Santa Rosa Memorial. Apparently there have been multiple complaints filed against Kaiser because of a lack of masks as the pandemic spreads. Nurses at Kaiser in Santa Rosa picketed yesterday because of the new rules saying they could be fired or side-lined if they wear masks that are donated to them even by friends and neighbors. The chief nurse representative at Kaiser for union nurses says they’re in danger without adequate personal protective equipment. For their part Kaiser says they’re providing the right equipment and they just can’t assure the integrity of protective equipment not provided by Kaiser Permanente.

Support is being offered to Redwood Credit Union customers dealing with sheltering in place. The credit union is considered essential business so they’re open. They say they’re following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) health and safety guidelines, with hand sanitizing stations, antimicrobial soaps, social distancing in the queues, and more cleaning at the branches and ATMs. They also have online options including a mobile app. They’re also offering members 0 percent interest loans up to $5,000 for both member businesses and individuals, 90-day payment deferrals on all consumer, credit card, mortgage and business loans, waiving all late fees over the next 90 days and the loans won’t be reported as delinquent to the credit bureaus during any payment deferral period, early withdrawals will not be penalized either.

Another case of coronavirus has been confirmed in Mendocino County. 42 tests are still pending as of this morning. The Public Health Office says they’re trying to release updated numbers daily and is posting them on their Facebook page. The Health Officer Noemi Doohan announced the second case at today’s Board of Supervisors meeting saying it was someone living in “inland Mendocino County” now “in isolation, not considered a risk to the public and not a health care worker.” She says they would not have exposed anyone with what they had been doing in their daily life and that they were exposed outside the County after direct contact with an infected person. The County is also working on a more restrictive shelter-in-place order including closing many state parking lots at parks and beaches.

The Governor says the social distancing measures put into play in the state could go on for two to three more months. The Governor says the state needs to get more hospital beds too because of the pandemic. Gov. Newsom says the state needs to increase by two-thirds the hospital bed capacity in the state so there are 50,000 beds for a predicted surge in infections. This as the president says he wants to reopen the government by Easter. The state also trying to get ahold of 1 billion medical gloves, 500 million N95 masks, and 200 million face shields for first responders to protect themselves from the virus.

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