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Tuesday, May 26, 2020

LA County Sees Highest Number of COVID-19 Cases in One Day

LA County Sees Highest Number of COVID-19 Cases in One Day

By ARON BENDER

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has confirmed 27 new deaths and 1,843 new cases of COVID-19.

Dr. Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health, cautioned that the numbers through Monday night include results from a backlog of tests.

One of the people who died was between the ages of 18 and 40 years old, the other 26 were 41 and older.

“As improved infection control practices and testing have increased over the last month, deaths among residents in nursing homes have dropped from 174 deaths for the week ending May 2, to 60 deaths for the week ending May 23,” Dr. Ferrer said.

LA County’s stay-at-home orders now allow for “the reopening of beach bike paths and parking lots, indoor mall curbside service, and select vehicle parades,” according to a statement. “Retailers remain closed to public entry along with beach piers, and public and private gatherings of any number of people outside of a single household unit are still not permitted.”

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Monday, May 25, 2020

County Reports 12 New COVID-19 Deaths on Monday

County Reports 12 New COVID-19 Deaths on Monday

CITY NEWS SERVICE

County health officials confirmed 12 new deaths and 1,047 new cases of the Coronavirus on Monday.

The numbers are among the lowest reported by the county since the pandemic began two months ago.

“On this Memorial Day, as we join with those mourning the loss of their loved ones to COVID -19, including the families of the 1100 veterans who recently passed away from COVID-19, we want to honor the memory of all the members of the armed forces who courageously gave of themselves to protect our country,” said Barbara Ferrer, director of public health. “We take to heart the lessons of courage and caring that mark this day of remembrance. As we prepare to re-open many places and spaces that are still closed, it will require an extraordinary effort by all of us to prevent outbreaks among workers and residents. Please take care of each other by wearing a face covering, keeping your distance when around others not in your household,

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Monday, May 25, 2020

State OKs In-Store Shopping At Retail Stores

State OKs In-Store Shopping At Retail Stores

Reopening picks up speed

CITY NEWS SERVICE

The California Department of Public Health Monday announced the statewide reopening of in-store retail shopping, a major step in California’s emergence from shutdown orders issued in March to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

The retail guidance for in-person shopping that is already in place for certain counties now applies statewide, officials said.

Retail does not include personal services such as hair salons, nail salons and barbershops.

Monday’s announcement came as Gov. Gavin Newsom released guidelines for resuming in-person services at churches and other houses of worship.

“Together, our actions have helped bend the curve and reduce infections in our state. As sectors continue to open with changes that aim to lower risk, remember that COVID-19 is still present in our communities,” said Dr. Sonia Angell, the state’s public health officer and director of the health department. “As more of us may be leaving our homes,

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Monday, May 25, 2020

Newsom Issues Guidelines for Reopening Churches

Newsom Issues Guidelines for Reopening Churches

CITY NEWS SERVICE

Gov. Gavin Newsom issued guidance Monday to churches and other houses of worship in California on how they can safely reopen amid the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

Under the remaining guidelines, places of worship must limit attendance to 25 percent of building capacity or 100 attendees, whichever is lower. This limitation will be in effect for the first 21 days of a county public health department’s approval of religious services within their jurisdictions, after which the California Department of Public Health will review the limits.

They must also arrange for social distancing of at least 6 feet between people.

— Shorten services to limit the length of time congregants/visitors spend at facilities whenever possible. This could include limiting speeches, asking congregants/visitors to put on garments at home before arrival, etc.

— Close places of worship for visitation outside of scheduled services, meetings, etc., whenever possible.

— Discontinue large gatherings that encourage congregants/visitors to travel and break physical distances during activities,

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Saturday, May 23, 2020

Supervisor Barger Introduces Motion to Pursue Variance for Reopening of Los Angeles County

Supervisor Barger Introduces Motion to Pursue Variance for Reopening of Los Angeles County

Barger also sent letter to Governor Newsom to urge for progression in Stage 2 and into Stage 3

Supervisor Kathryn Barger introduced a motion, co-authored by Supervisor Janice Hahn, that will ask the Los Angeles County Chief Executive Office, County Counsel and Public Health Officer, to pursue a variance with the State of California once the County has achieved readiness under the State’s identified criteria. This motion, which will be heard before the Board of Supervisors at its next meeting on May 26, also supports efforts for interested cities or regions within the County to apply for their own partial variance based on the State’s readiness criteria. These are critical and necessary steps for the County to pursue toward full reopening.

In addition, Supervisor Kathryn Barger sent a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom today urging his support to enable Los Angeles County to advance in Stage 2 and transition to Stage 3 of California’s COVID-19 pandemic roadmap. This would allow Los Angeles County to reopen the majority of businesses including dine-in restaurants,

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Friday, May 22, 2020

L.A. County Clears More Retailers To Open Ahead Of Memorial Day Weekend

L.A. County Clears More Retailers To Open Ahead Of Memorial Day Weekend

STAFF REPORTS

Ahead of Memorial Day weekend, Los Angeles County Friday reopened some beach parking lots and authorized retail businesses inside enclosed shopping malls to reopen with curbside pickup service only, while continuing to warn of the continued spread of the coronavirus.

The changes came as county officials braced for a holiday weekend that could again challenge residents’ resolve to adhere to stay-at-home restrictions that bar large gatherings and require face coverings and social distancing when residents interact with others.

“Based on the week that we opened up the trails and golf courses, I was very proud of the L.A. County residents who really did recognize wearing a mask and the social distancing that was in place,” said Kathryn Barger, chair of the county Board of Supervisors. “So I’m confident moving into this holiday, people will also recognize that is the reason why we talk about Safer At Home moving to safer at work and safer in our communities. Because people are recognizing that is the only way we’re going to stop or slow down the spread of this virus.

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Friday, May 22, 2020

L.A. County Jobless Rate Soars Thanks to Continuing Pandemic

L.A. County Jobless Rate Soars Thanks to Continuing Pandemic

CITY NEWS SERVICE

The dire economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic were laid bare Friday with the release of figures putting Los Angeles County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate at 19.6% in April, well above the 6.7% rate in March.

The 19.6% rate dwarfed the 4.5% unemployment level from April 2019, according to the state Employment Development Department.

In Orange County, where seasonally adjusted numbers were not available, the April jobless rate was 13.8%.

Statewide, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 15.5% in April, up from 5.5% in March and well above the 4.2% level in April 2019. The comparable estimates for the nation were 14.7% in April, 4.4% in March and 3.6% in April 2019.

According to the EDD, total nonfarm employment in Los Angeles County dropped by 685,000 jobs between March and April, a 15% decline, dropping the number of positions to just under 3.9 million jobs.

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Thursday, May 21, 2020

County COVID-19 Death Toll Reaches 2,000

County COVID-19 Death Toll Reaches 2,000

57 additional deaths reported on Wednesday

CITY NEWS SERVICE

The County health department confirmed 46 new Coronavirus deaths and 1,204 new cases, taking the death toll above 2,000 cases.

To date, the department has identified 42,037 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of LA County, and a total of 2,016 deaths.

“To those of you who are suffering and grieving because of the loss of a loved one to COVID-19, we offer you our deepest condolences. We are thinking of you every day,” said Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health. “As more businesses and spaces are open, as individuals and institutions, we can take care of each other by continuing to practice physical distancing, wearing cloth face coverings, and following all of the directives for safer practices at businesses and in public spaces. We can do this, because we’ve done it. We have worked together doing our part to save lives.”

Staying home, physical distancing and wearing cloth face coverings has resulted in a decreased number of new infections.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

LA County Sheriff Refuses Subpoena to Appear at Civilian Oversight Meeting

LA County Sheriff Refuses Subpoena to Appear at Civilian Oversight Meeting

CITY NEWS SERVICE

Despite being subpoenaed to attend the Civilian Oversight Commission’s meeting Thursday, embattled Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Wednesday he will not be there.

“Regarding the commission’s subpoena, you have to understand … the subpoena, Measure R, the ordinance enacted by the Board of Supervisors, all these things were generated without any oversight, without any third-party independent legal analysis of its constitutionality,” Villanueva said.
“That still remains in doubt, and until that issue is resolved I will not be adhering to any subpoena issued by either entity — be it the inspector general or the Oversight Commission.”

Villanueva said his department will be represented at Thursday’s meeting by Assistant Sheriff Bruce Chase, who “volunteered his time to go and testify to the commission and give them an update on all the COVID-19 efforts we are engaged in.”

Villanueva said his department is committed to being as transparent as possible, with the commission and the public,

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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

LA County COVID-19 Cases Top 40,000

LA County COVID-19 Cases Top 40,000

57 additional deaths reported on Wednesday

CITY NEWS SERVICE

County officials reported 57 new deaths and 1,324 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus on Wednesday, bringing the death toll to 1,970 and the total number of cases to 40,857.

“It’s still relatively easy to become infected, particularly if you’re not taking precautions — and unfortunately, there have been recent parties and gatherings that did result in a number of newly infected people,” said County Health Director Barbara Ferrer. “So, please find ways to enjoy the holiday with people from your own household, or with friends and family from afar, using our technology tools. Being together from a distance is currently our new normal, and while this is temporary, for this Memorial Day we’ll still need to practice social distancing.”

The county has been slowly reopening recreational amenities and retail businesses for curbside pickup only. The county’s Economic Resiliency Task Force, which includes members of the Board of Supervisors and local business leaders,

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