• Marin Stay at Home Order Lifted — January 25, 2021 Marin Stay at Home Order Lifted — January 25, 2021

    Declining infection rates prompts wider reopening

    San Rafael, CA – The State of California has announced that Marin County will move from “purple” to “red” status in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy effective Wednesday, February 24.  

    The move from Tier 1 or “widespread risk” status to the less restrictive Tier 2 or “substantial risk” level is based on consecutive weeks of progress in Marin’s COVID-19 case statistics. Marin joins San Mateo and San Francisco as the only Bay Area counties not in tier 1, the most restrictive tier.

    The California Department of Public Health assigns each county to a tier on a weekly basis based on two county-level factors: the total number of new cases, and the percent of new cases among those tested. For Marin, the move to Tier 2 is because of a low percentage of positive tests among residents of low-income communities. Among residents in census tracts in the lowest quartile on the California Healthy Places Index only one in 25 tested were found to be infected. This is down from nearly one in five at the height of the pandemic in August. This measure ensures virus transmission reduction in all communities, especially among less advantaged households. Areas once stricken with outbreaks – including San Rafael’s Canal neighborhood and portions of Novato – are seeing decreases in COVID-19 cases.

    “We’ve focused on our hardest-hit communities, and it seems to be paying off,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer. “It’s especially encouraging to see this progress as we move toward vaccinating essential workers. Adding the protection of the vaccine will help seal this progress for the whole community.”    

    The primary changes allowed under the state order as Marin moves into Tier 2:

    • Retail establishments can expand indoor capacity to 50%
    • Indoor malls can expand indoor capacity to 50% (food courts must remain closed)
    • Gyms and fitness studios (including yoga and dance studios) are allowed to open indoors at 10% capacity
    • Restaurants are allowed to open indoors at 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer.
    • Museums are allowed to open indoors at 25% capacity
    • Movie theaters are allowed to open indoors at 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer
    • Cultural ceremonies, including weddings and funerals, are allowed indoors at 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer (churches and houses of worship maintain 25% indoor capacity)

    The transition to Tier 2 means any Marin school that has not yet reopened to some form of in-person instruction will be eligible to make that transition beginning Monday, March 1. Once eligible, the reopening pace and scope of a school is at the discretion of school officials. To date, nearly 90% of Marin schools have already reopened to some form of site-based classroom learning.

    Changes to business sector guidelines are available on the Marin Recovers website or the California Blueprint for a Safer Economy website.

    In August 2020, the state introduced its Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a four-tier framework by which counties are measured for loosening and tightening restrictions on social activities and business operations. Sectors of business can progressively open more operations with moves up the list toward the final stage, Tier 4. A county must spend at least 21 days in any tier before advancing to a less restrictive one. As Marin experienced, counties have to tighten back up if conditions worsen.

    “Further progress within the tiers requires the collective action of all of us,” said Benita McLarin, Director of Marin County Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). “Mask wearing, maintaining physical distance from people you don’t live with, good hand hygiene and regular COVID-19 testing are easy steps everyone can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”

    Free, same day COVID-19 testing is available across the county, and anyone who comes into frequent contact with members of the public should consider getting tested at least once a month. See Public Health’s testing webpage for a list of testing locations.

    Meanwhile, vaccinations continue throughout the county. Nearly 20% of Marin residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine. See Public Health’s vaccination webpage for the latest information.

    Follow the latest COVID-19 surveillance figures in Marin on the Marin HHS website. Register online to receive a daily COVID-19 update from Marin HHS.

  • Governor Newsom to Propose $4.5 Billion for Equitable Recovery for California’s Businesses and Jobs in 2021 Budget

    Calls for immediate action to support small businesses, including $575 million on top of the $500 million previously allocated to California’s Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant, bringing total support to more than $1 billion
    SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today previewed his Equitable Recovery for California’s Businesses and Jobs plan, the business and workforce recovery elements of his 2021-22 State Budget that will help California through the COVID-19 pandemic and advance an equitable, broad-based recovery.
    Watch the Governor provide a brief overview of his Equitable Recovery for California’s Businesses and Jobs plan here. (Facebook link)
    Building on actions the state has taken to support California’s businesses throughout the pandemic, including emergency aid and regulatory relief, these proposals double down on the Newsom Administration’s commitment to rebuilding the economy, with investments across sectors and benefits for businesses of all sizes.
    Notably, the Budget proposes an immediate action to approve $575 million more for California’s small businesses, the backbone of the state’s economy, as they work to adapt their operations amid the COVID-19 pandemic. This immediate action proposal is on top of the initial $500 million allocated in partnership with the Legislature to the California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant, bringing the total for California’s small businesses to more than $1 billion.
    “California’s economy is known the world over for our innovation, inclusion, and resilience. That spirit will carry us through this pandemic and beyond,” said Governor Newsom. “These budget proposals reflect our commitment to an equitable, broad-based recovery that ensures California remains the best place to start and grow a business – and where all Californians have an opportunity to reach their dreams. I look forward to continuing to partner with the Legislature to advance these priorities so our economy can emerge stronger, fairer, and more prosperous than before.”
    The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented challenges to California. However, prudent fiscal management in the past and present has allowed California to provide ongoing support to impacted Californians where they need it most.
    Building on supports for California businesses before, during, and through the pandemic, the Governor today previewed the following budget proposals:
    Small Business Grants
    Prior to the pandemic, small businesses created two-thirds of new jobs and employed nearly half of all private-sector employees. California is home to 4.1 million small businesses that employ nearly half of the state’s total workforce. To help keep these businesses afloat, the Governor is proposing a total of $1.075 billion for the State’s Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program.
    To put money into the hands of the most impacted small businesses as quickly as possible, the Governor has proposed immediate legislative action on $575 million in additional grants. The investment will add to the initial $500 million allocation announced in November. The Program offers grants up to $25,000 to micro and small businesses that have been impacted by the pandemic. These grants will be distributed across the state, with priority given to regions and industries impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, disadvantaged communities and underserved small business groups.
    The $575 million Early Action Budget proposal includes $25 million for small cultural institutions, such as museums and art galleries, that have been constrained by the pandemic in their ability to educate the community and remain financially viable.
    California Jobs Initiative
    The Budget also proposes sustained investments to preserve California’s competitiveness. The California Jobs Initiative, a $777.5 million proposal, focuses on job creation and retention, regional development, small businesses and climate innovation, including increased funding for: 
    ·       California Competes Tax Credit (CalCompetes), which incentivizes businesses to locate in California to stay, grow and create quality full-time jobs in the state and creates a new CalCompetes grant program to support job creation and investments in infrastructure ($430 million)
    ·       Extended Main Street Small Business Tax Credit to encourage hiring new employees and rehiring former employees ($100 million).
    o  As of January 4, almost 9,000 taxpayers had reserved over $54 million of the existing credit.
    ·       Mitigating the SALT deduction limitation for S-corporation shareholders
    ·       The California Dream Fund to seed entrepreneurship and small business creation in underserved communities ($35 million)
    ·       Additional funds for the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank’s (IBank) Small Business Finance Center to provide small business loan and disaster loan guarantees ($50 million which will be leveraged to provide $250 million in loans) and for the California Rebuilding Fund ($50 million.)
    ·       Expanded sales tax exclusions through the Treasurer’s Office to reduce the cost of manufacturing equipment in order to promote innovation and meet the state’s climate goals ($100 million)
    This funding also includes $12.5 million allocated, in partnership with the Legislature, in late 2020 to fully capitalize the California Rebuilding Fund to support $125 million low-interest loans to underserved businesses.
    Workforce Development
    The Budget proposes one-time and ongoing investments totaling $353 million to support California’s workers as they adapt to changes in the economy brought about by COVID-19. These investments lift up proven workforce development strategies like apprenticeship and High-Road Training Partnerships and encourage greater collaboration and coordination among California’s institutions of higher learning and local workforce partners. Demand-driven workforce programs can help California train the workforce of the future in key sectors including health care and technology. 
    Fee Waivers
    The Budget proposes $70.6 million for fee waivers to individuals and businesses most impacted by the pandemic – including barbers, cosmetologists, manicurists, bars and restaurants. These waivers will assist those who have not been able to operate or are operating at reduced capacity during the pandemic.
    Deferred Maintenance
    In recognition of the job-creating potential of infrastructure projects on state-owned properties, the Budget includes a $300 million one-time General Fund for the most critical statewide deferred maintenance, including greening of state infrastructure. This proposal will help create jobs in California while achieving our state’s climate goals. Projects include the installation of electric vehicle charging stations at state-owned facilities.
    Through the Infill Infrastructure Grant (IIG) Program, this Budget proposes $500 million to create jobs and long-term housing development to unlock more than 7,500 new permanently affordable homes for Californians. IIG grants to local governments and developers bring the cost down for new housing by defraying costs for things like sewers, roads and site preparation, all while putting thousands of people to work in good jobs building this housing-related infrastructure. $250 million of these funds are proposed for early action.
    Zero-Emission Vehicles and Zero-Emission Vehicle Infrastructure
    Building on California’s historic commitment to requiring sales of all new passenger vehicles to be zero-emission by 2035, this Budget proposes an additional $1.5 billion investment to accelerate our state’s progress toward these goals while creating jobs. The proposal will support jobs and economic growth and provide air quality benefits and support for low-income Californians to purchase cleaner vehicles. Funds will support purchases of clean trucks, buses and off-road freight equipment and Clean Cars 4 All programs. It will also support job-creating construction of electric charging and hydrogen fueling stations necessary to accelerate zero-emission vehicle adoption. The Budget proposal will leverage additional private sector capital to build the necessary infrastructure and create jobs to support California’s recovery.
    These 2021-22 Budget proposals build on the Newsom Administration’s work to support California’s businesses and workers. Among many actions, the Administration waived the $800 minimum franchise tax – often a costly barrier for start-up businesses – for the first year of operation. The Administration in November also extended up to billions in immediate, temporary tax relief to businesses impacted by COVID-19 by extending deadlines for paying sales taxes for smaller businesses and expanding interest-free payment options for larger businesses particularly affected by significant restrictions on operations due to COVID-19.
    Additionally, the Administration built and funded the Great Plates Delivered program, a first-in-the-nation program that partners with local businesses to deliver nutritious meals to older Californians and other adults at high risk from COVID-19, which has supported more than 9,000 jobs per week on average.
    Contact: Governor's Press Office
    Tuesday, January 5, 2021
    (916) 445-4571
  • Additional COVID-19 Testing Launching in Marin Additional COVID-19 Testing Launching in Marin

    County partners with Curative to collect self-administered oral swab test

    San Rafael, CA – Marin County’s partnership with Curative Inc. is expanding to bring additional self-administered, oral swab testing to Marin.

    The new drive-through testing location in San Rafael offers FDA-authorized pain-free swabbing that is self-administered. Instead of doing nasal swabs, residents will simply open a swab package, cough deeply three to five times and swab inside each cheek, upper and lower gum, underneath and on top of the tongue, and the roof of the mouth. This swab is then placed inside a biohazard bag and returned to a Curative worker. Results are returned within 72 hours by email or text. 

    The new site is located at the “Armory Parking Lot” along Civic Center Drive in San Rafael (commonly referred to as the Jury parking lot which is east of the Marin County Civic Center and just south of Lagoon Park). The site will operate 11 AM to 5 PM on Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, and 8 AM to 2 PM on Mondays and Wednesdays.

    All curative testing sites remain free, but appointments must be scheduled in advance through the Curative website (available in English and Spanish). Appointment slots open about 3-4 days in advance of each scheduled testing day. The updated schedule of Marin County -based Curative test sites includes:

    • Bolinas: Mondays, 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM; Bolinas Fire Station (100 Mesa Road)
    • Larkspur: Thursdays starting January 7, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM; Piper Park (250 Doherty Drive)
    • Novato: Fridays starting January 8, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM; Novato Library (1720 Novato Boulevard)
    • San Anselmo: Tuesdays, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM; United Market (100 Red Hill Avenue)
    • San Geronimo: UPDATED INFO! Mondays, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM; San Geronimo Golf Course parking lot (5800 Sir Francis Drake Blvd)
    • San Rafael: Starting January 6; Armory Parking Lot (Armory Drive)
      • Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
      • Mondays and Wednesdays, 8:00 AM – 2:00 PM
    • Sausalito: Wednesdays starting January 6, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM; Sausalito City Hall (420 Litho Street)

    Those without health insurance should contact a local health care clinic or seek testing from one of the community test sites listed at Coronavirus.MarinHHS.org/testing.

  • County of Marin COVID-19 Relief Fund Rental Assistance County of Marin COVID-19 Relief Fund Rental Assistance

    December 23, 2020 — The County of Marin has created a new phone number and email address to guide residents with requests for financial rental assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic. Anyone needing help paying rent may call (415) 473-2223 or email staff to learn more about the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, which is open for applications now.

    The new phone line was created to provide specialized aid to individuals seeking rental assistance – regardless of citizenship status – and allow the Marin County Public Health’s public information line for the COVID-19 emergency to focus on assisting with questions about coronavirus testing, vaccines, and business guidelines.

    Marin County Emergency Rental Assistance Program

  • Covid-19 Testing information Covid-19 Testing information

    COVID-19 testing options are available through medical providers, self-referral sites and at-home testing options. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, immediately contact your medical/healthcare provider, primary physician or local medical clinic for guidance regarding testing. Please review this page to determine which Marin County testing options are best for you.

    Have more questions about COVID-19 testing in Marin County, including what to do if you test positive? Please visit our "Frequently Asked Questions" page to answer your testing -related questions.


  • Please Wear a Mask when Visiting Sausalito Please Wear a Mask when Visiting Sausalito

    Help Keep Sausalito Safe for Residents and Visitors Alike

    Here in Sausalito while the views are plenty, we have narrow streets and sidewalks, tiny hidden paths, shops and restaurants. It is our intention to keep all who visit and reside here safe especially during peak visitor season.

    Californians are required1 to wear face coverings in high-risk settings as the state continues to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    In the latest guidance, the Department of Public Health explained, “People will be required to wear masks or other coverings in public spaces, including while taking public transportation, seeking medical care, shopping and in most work scenarios.’

    ‘Children under 2 are exempted from the rules, as are people eating or drinking in restaurants provided they can maintain a minimum 6-foot distance from other customers and staff who are not members of the same household.”

    Why wear a face covering? The use of face coverings by everyone can limit the release of infected droplets when talking, coughing, and/or sneezing, as well as reinforce physical distancing.

    Governor Gavin Newsom explained in an interview with NPR2, "the most impactful thing we can do, short of going back to a stay-at-home order, is wearing face coverings when we can't practice physical distancing."

    Please be courteous to fellow visitors and residents by wearing a face covering, and help prevent the spread of Covid-19 … when you Visit Sausalito!

    —Kim Huff, Kimber Communications

    1) https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/CDPH%20Document%20Library/COVID-19/Guidance-for-Face-Coverings_06-18-2020.pdf

    2) https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/06/18/880583357/california-gov-newsom-makes-face-masks-mandatory-amid-rising-coronavirus-cases

  • Indoor Retail & Personal Cleaning Services Indoor Retail & Personal Cleaning Services

    Indoor retail sales and personal cleaning services are allowed to proceed starting June 12 under the newest Marin County Public Health guidelines, provided that restrictions are in place to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

    The reopening of indoor retail follows the June 5 release of reopening guidelines for outdoor faith-based and cultural ceremonies, charter boats, dog parks, swimming pools, and a wider range of outdoor recreational businesses.

    Indoor retail will be allowed if proprietors and store managers strictly limit patron assembly inside businesses and take all recommended public health precautions. This includes limiting occupancy to 50% capacity or less, upholding physical distancing and facial covering requirements, and installing protective screens where maintaining six feet of distance is not possible. Previously, the only indoor retail businesses allowed to operate were those deemed essential businesses, such as grocery stores.

    Indoor cleaning services, such as housekeeping and janitorial services, are allowed to operate with limitations and conditions. Some examples of the limitations and conditions include:

    • Cleaning of residential properties must take place when residents are not at home
    • Commercial properties cannot have a tenant or member of the public present in the immediate office or space during cleaning
    • Cleaning and janitorial services shall follow all applicable state and federal guidelines, including COVID-19 Industry Guidance: Limited Services and the safer cleaning methods set forth by the California Department of Public Health

    Businesses and organizations preparing to reopen must also complete a Site-Specific Protection Plan to define how a business will reopen in a safe and clean manner for patrons and employees. The plan template combines state-level guidance published in the State of California Resilience Roadmap with Marin County public health orders.

  • About Covid-19 Restrictions About Covid-19 Restrictions

    Regional Stay At Home Order (December 2020)

    To answer questions related to the Public Health Order, we created an extensive Q&A document to help understand the Order.

    Regional Stay Home Order – NEW

    The Regional Stay Home Order (PDF), announced December 3, 2020, and a supplemental order, signed December 6, 2020, will go into effect at 11:59 PM the day after a region has been announced to have less than 15% ICU availability. The supplemental order clarifies retail operations and goes into effect immediately. They prohibit private gatherings of any size, close sector operations except for critical infrastructure and retail, and require 100% masking (with certain exceptions as indicated within guidance for use of face coverings) and physical distancing in all others.

    Once triggered, these orders will remain in effect for at least 3 weeks. After that period, they will be lifted when a region’s projected ICU capacity meets or exceeds 15%. This will be assessed on a weekly basis after the initial 3 week period.

    Learn more about these orders and find out what’s open in your area.

    For ongoing status updates from the Couty of Marin, please subscribe here.