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The Nooner for Friday, July 3, 2020, presented by SYASL Partners
GENERAL ELECTION DATA POINTS
¡Buenos dias mis amigos!
If you feel frustrated about the health orders this week, feel fortunate. I've been chatting with friends I met in Mexíco who live in Mexíco City and Chiapas. They are under stricter orders, but it's still worse. Things are as bad with the virus there with a much less sufficient health care system and with a government that can't spend trillions on its credit card to keep people in their homes and eating. While we shed tears about 95 dead yesterday they are seeing pictures of people dying from COVID-19 in their streets. Many Americans think of people dying in the streets from drug gang violence, but now we're talking virus violence at one of our biggest trading partners. It's all relative. Drug violence is usually targeted and gang members or senior law enforcement and the public has grown to accept that. Virus violence is everywhere.
Do I want to be writing this morning? Of course not. I want to be watching Hamilton on Disney+, which is free since my cell is on Verizon. I know many of you kids stayed up until midnight to watch it, but I didn't have the stamina.
PSAs: Lots of folks have asked me why California hasn't launched a PSA campaign to advocate for masking and social distancing. Yesterday, Governor Newsom and others announced a new public service announcement campaign on TV and billboards (plenty of inventory available).
I'm not happy about the available inventory as I count pennies to pay my rent. Of course, I am happy that the state is doing this.
INTERDEPENDENCE DAY: For CalMatters, Ana B. Ibarra writes that the surge of COVID-19 in Imperial County doesn't stop at county lines.
Imperial County on the Mexican border is some 600 miles away from the state capital. But when its two area hospitals recently began to run out of intensive care unit beds, it had to transport critically ill patients as far north as Sacramento.
The remote county of about 180,000 people has California’s highest rate of COVID-19 cases. It has also sent at least 500 patients to hospitals outside its county lines, demonstrating that despite the state’s emphasis on local control during the pandemic, an outbreak in one county can be felt almost anywhere in the state.
As the coronavirus rages through California and hospitalizations rise, finding intensive care unit beds and staff for patients in hot spots, like Imperial, is becoming increasingly challenging, hospital and public health officials warn.
“As other counties reopened and their own beds are being used, it is tougher and tougher to find beds,” said Dr. Katherine Staats, medical director for Imperial County’s emergency medical services agency.
Yesterday, former Assembly Republican Leader and current Stanislaus County supe Kristin Olsen had an important apology on social media about hospitalization rates. I think it's important for me to share the entire statement as I've heard many, many claims that hospital capacity is not an issue. That is completely different from friends of mine on the frontlines.
There are OB/GYNs who have unhappily been turned into pulmonologists or ER physicians -- thirty years after only delivering babies. Governor Newsom has emphasized that licensed beds do not reflect capacity in his NewsomAtNoon pressers.
Licensed beds are reduced by isolation needs and staffing, as Kristin states.
Retraction of my statement from yesterday, 7-1-2020:
Yesterday, I told the Modesto Bee that while our hospital trend line has been of concern over the last couple weeks, we still have more than enough capacity in our hospitals to accommodate patients. Part of that statement was printed in an article posted online by the Bee yesterday afternoon and printed in the newspaper this morning. I made that statement based on the fact that our COVID-19 dashboard shows 40% capacity available in hospital beds, 33% capacity in the ICUs, and 77% of ventilators available. These percentages are based on data points reported daily by Stanislaus County hospitals.
Today, we learned that these numbers are misleading, despite the fact that we have been reviewing and reporting them daily for months and despite weekly meetings between County public health and hospital leaders. As it turns out, while the numbers reported to the State and County do accurately reflect the number of licensed beds in our County, they do not reflect the number of available beds due to both staffing issues and patient isolation requirements. In reality, our hospitals in Stanislaus County are very stretched at this time and are either at or near their max capacity in the ICUs. All are in the process of staffing up and working collaboratively with our County EOC team to ensure that collectively, we can accommodate patients in need of hospitalization. Also, we are working to modify our COVID-19 dashboard to more accurately reflect capacity in our hospitals.
I apologize for my unintentional misstatement yesterday. I work hard to only present accurate, corroborated facts, and I believed that was what I was doing yesterday based on the information I was given. While it has been important for each of us to be vigilant in protecting public health since the spread of the coronavirus began earlier this year, it is now more important than ever given the extent of community spread, the rapidly rising hospital numbers, and the fact that our hospitals are already stretched thin. Please continue to practice social distancing and frequent hand washing, and please wear a face covering when in public places near other people.
Thank you for clearing things up, Kristin. Keep up the good work!
TRIBAL GAMING AND PLASTICS: Yesterday, Sacramento Superior Court judge James P. Arguelles extended the qualification deadlines for signatures for two ballot measures to September 28, 2020 and signaled that further stay-at-home orders could extend them further.
The two ballot measures are the plastics reduction measure, which followed the failure of the Legislature to enact a similar measure at the anti-vaxx Friday bloody Friday end-of-session last year and the sports betting and other games measure for casinos on tribal lands and racetracks.
Judge Arguelles calculated the reduction of signature gathering during stay-at-home to come up with the extension. Both measures attest to have collected the bare number of signatures but know well that an additional 25-30% is needed to discount invalid and duplicate signatures.
The rullings are found in:
There are 5 more measures in circulation, but none reported 25% of signatures for qualification, which is required. Thus, they are unlikely to be accepted for similar claims as the tribal gaming and plastics measures.
Of course, it's important to note that the alternative SCA 6 (Dodd) that would have allowed sports betting and other games in card clubs as well died in the Senate last month after both tribes and small card clubs joined in opposition to the measure.
I'm pooped and want to watch Hamilton. The fact is that the other news is all COVID and you already know it. Look below to wish some very happy cakedays to some great folks!
cakeday and classifieds after the jump...
CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to former Assembly member Richard Gordon, former Assembly member Lloyd Levine, Henry Lo, and Mary Ann Lutz!