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The Nooner for Wednesday, November 11, 2020, presented by SYASL Partners
Happy Veterans Day Dad!
|Proposition 14 (stem cell bond)||51.1%|
|Proposition 15 (split roll property tax)||48.2%|
|Proposition 16 (affirmative action ban repeal)||43.3%|
|Proposition 17 (voting: parole)||58.9%|
|Proposition 18 (voting: primary for 17yos)||44.4%|
|Proposition 19 (property tax base transfer)||51.1%|
|Proposition 20 (criminal justice)||38.0%|
|Proposition 21 (rent control)||40.3%|
|Proposition 22 (transportation network AB 5 exemption)||58.5%|
|Proposition 23 (dialysis)||36.4%|
|Proposition 24 (consumer privacy)||56.1%|
|Proposition 25 (bail referendum - yes upholds SB 10)||43.9%|
COVID-19: Yesterday, 71 deaths were added in California for a total of 18,074 since the beginning of the pandemic.
-Tiers for Fears: Below is where the counties currently fall on the reopening guidance after yesterday's changes I emailed to you as a Nooner extra. Visit this page to find out how a tier affects a specific industry or activity. After a tier demotion, a county must have data on the three metrics (cases/100,000, positivity, health equity) in the less-restrictive tier for three weeks before moving back. Look up a county here.
*seeking adjudication of data and county practices that would move it to the higher tier
-Restaurants: For The Bee, Benjy Egel looks at what Sacramento County restaurants are facing with colder and wetter weather approaching with no indoor seating. This is particularly troubling in the holiday luncheon and evening parties season although, even in the red tier, those technically wouldn't be allowed either.
-Theme parks: In the Register, Brady MacDonald writes that the California Attractions and Parks Association released a statement stating that the current guidance for large theme parks will keep them closed indefinitely, hurting employees and regional economies.
“We continue to urge the Newsom Administration to reconsider the impact of their Tier 4 sentence for California’s major theme parks,” CAPA executive director Erin Guerrero said in a statement. “The current guidance will keep theme parks closed indefinitely and leave thousands of theme park workers in poverty.”
California issued separate reopening guidelines for small and large theme parks. Small theme parks with a capacity of fewer than 15,000 visitors can reopen in the orange/moderate tier 3 while large theme parks can return in the yellow/minimal tier 4. CAPA has pleaded with the Newsom administration to allow large California theme parks like Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood to reopen in the less-restrictive orange/moderate tier 3.
“There are real people suffering economic instability, worried about putting food on the tables for their families,” Guerrero said in a statement. “The Newsom administration’s Tier 4 designation means that park employees will continue to suffer even when we reach the moderate Tier 3 and many other parts of the economy are allowed to reopen. Parks are ready to reopen responsibly in Tier 3 with significant modifications that protect the health and safety of both employees and guests.”
As you see at the top, I have an ad from CAPA. I would include this item regardless. I've been writing about the Anaheim economy (particularly hotel taxes) since March 14, before the state's initial shutdown on March 19. At that time, Disneyland was going to be closed for the month of March. Meanwhile, 242 days later, here we are. And, its not just Anaheim but Buena Park, Orange and other cities that are affected by the closure of Disneyland and Knott's. While not as much of tourist destinations, that impact is felt across the state around other large parks, many of which are in regions near mostly shuttered convention centers.
Meanwhile, one smaller theme park allowed to reopen with restrictions under the orange tier will be shuttered again, reports the OCR's MacDonald.
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk will reclose after Santa Cruz County moved back to the red/substantial tier 2 risk level under Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy. The Beach Boardwalk reopened roller coasters and thrill rides on Nov. 7 and 8 after the county moved into the orange/moderate tier 3 risk level.
“While we are disappointed to close rides and attractions, we anticipated the likelihood Santa Cruz County might move back and forth within the tiers and have prepared to adjust our operations accordingly,” Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk spokesperson Kris Reyes said in a statement. “The health and safety of our guests and employees is of the utmost importance during these challenging times and this will remain our priority in the weeks and months ahead.”
-Sacramento: The county Department of Public Health was quick to get out an updated public health order, which takes effect at noon on Friday.
-Los Angeles: From yesterday's Los Angeles County Department of Public Health press release:
There are 888 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized and 28% of these people are in the ICU. The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 each day increased to over 800 this past week and now nears 900. A month ago in early-October, the daily number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 was between 650 and 725 patients.
Throughout this pandemic when we have seen a surge in cases, it is followed by increases in hospitalizations and deaths.
It is very important businesses understand, implement and continue to comply with protocols and directives, as they can contribute to increased community transmission when COVID-19 spreads among their employees and customers.
-Sac County: From Benjy Egel's Bee article above "Sacramento County reported a record 484 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday, part of a nationwide spike since late October. Halloween parties seemed to exacerbate the problem, Sacramento County Health Officer Dr. Olivia Kasirye told The Sacramento Bee."
-Placer County: After sliding back to the red tier, the Placer County Board of Supervisors says that the county will not be enforcing the statewide guidance, which technically is issued by county health officers with state-directed money at risk. Anna Giles reports for CBS Sacramento:
Placer County slid back into the red tier Tuesday, meaning tighter restrictions on how many people businesses can have indoor operations. Restaurants are supposed to be at 25 percent capacity.
But Placer County leaders are promising a standoff approach. Supervisor Kirk Uhler said the message from the county board is clear.
“We as a county are not enforcing any of the governor’s mandates. Pure and simple,” Uhler said. ”Do what you need to do to stay in business. Run your businesses. If your customers want to come in, accommodate them.”
As businesses in other counties get hit with fines for thousands of dollars, Placer County health officials said they’ll focus on an educational approach.
Supervisor Kirk Uhler is the son of longtime anti-tax activist Lew Uhler.
-San Francisco: The Chron's Erin Allday reports that San Francisco will shut down indoor dining and pause high school reopenings even while the city and county remains in the least restrictive tier.
San Francisco will shut down indoor dining this Friday and is pausing plans to reopen high schools after reporting an alarming spike in coronavirus cases that is pushing the city toward a coronavirus surge that could surpass the summer peaks, city and public health leaders said Tuesday.
The city remains in the least restrictive, yellow tier in California’s reopening plan, but public health officials said Tuesday that they were imposing immediate, aggressive new restrictions because of the “rapid and significant” increase in cases, including a 250% jump since Oct. 2.
If the current pace holds, the city could report 300 a cases a day by the end of December, officials said. It’s currently reporting 100 or fewer cases a day.
San Francisco’s announcement came as 11 California counties, including Contra Costa and Santa Cruz, were bumped back to more restrictive tiers in the state’s pandemic reopening plan on Tuesday, and as the coronavirus stampedes over much of the United States.
Also as part of the new order, effective Friday, SF movie theaters can operate at 25% capacity which is lower than the 50% previously allowed, reports Lily Janiak in the Chron.
San Diego: In the SDUT, Lori Weisberg and Phillip Molnar write that many San Diego County businesses fear for their survival after the county returned to the most restrictive purple tier.
From restaurants, bars, gyms and movie theaters, which will soon be limited to outdoors-only service, to shops and malls where indoor capacities will drop to just 25 percent, the news Tuesday that San Diego County will enter the most restrictive tier of the state’s reopening system is yet another financial blow to both the owners and their workers.
Businesses are yet again preparing to make the gut-wrenching decision to let employees go or sharply reduce their hours while they contemplate the possibility of closing their doors — either temporarily or for good.
Some still are hopeful they can make a go of it over the next several weeks, while still others are weighing the risks of flouting the new rules, scheduled to go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, and remain open for indoor service.
So much for those two strip clubs that got that restraining order last week to prevent the county from keeping them shuttered while under the red tier restrictions.
PARDON ME: Yesterday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced 22 pardons, 13 commutations and four medical reprieves. Several are legal residents who came from Southeast Asia as minors, have completed their sentences, but are under threat of deportation.
LA TRANSIT: Los Angeles's Metro system has seen a significant drop in ridership and it's not just COVID-19 to blame, reports Elijah Chiland for Curbed LA.
Metro’s rail network is back to full strength after a long year of repairs, construction, and station closures—and a $2.1 billion train line is expected to open in the year ahead.
So where did all the riders go?
In November, ridership plunged 14 percent year-over-year. Passengers took 300,924 trips on Metro’s train lines on a typical weekday. That was nearly 50,000 fewer rides per day than in November 2018. Compared to one year ago, ridership is down on all train lines.
Some lines are carrying fewer riders than they have in years, and for the past few months, the Gold Line has been emptier than it's been since it began traveling to Azusa.
Ridership drops have been most pronounced on Metro’s buses, which carry more than two-thirds of the system’s daily passengers. As the agency poured billions of dollars into expanding its rail network, extensions to the Gold and E (formerly Expo) lines offset some of those losses by attracting more commuters to the system.
But last year, rail ridership dipped 4.2 percent after two years of solid gains.
In 2019, a further decline was almost inevitable given scheduled shut-downs of parts of the A (formerly Blue) and E lines. Both lines have fully reopened—but ridership hasn’t rebounded.
At least half of the A Line’s route was closed for most of the year. The full train line finally reopened on November 2, with Metro leaders promising faster travel times and a smoother rider experience.
Despite upgraded tracks, stations, and train cars, mechanical issues and delays afflicted the 29-year-old train line during its first weeks back in operation.
During the entire month of November, the line served an average of 44,578 weekday riders, down almost 30 percent from 63,463 riders in November 2018—two months before the southern half of the route shut down.
Prior to the shutdown, Metro had promised ride times on the train would drop to 48 minutes from end to end—down from 58 minutes. Now, agency staffers are working on getting trains to consistently hit a 53-minute goal, only five minutes faster than the scheduled travel time before the closures.
cakeday and classifieds after the jump...
CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Matthew Bajko, Jenny Berg, Diane Dixon, Jenny Kao, former state senator Fran Pavley, Senator Richard Roth, David Wolfe!