5/30/20

Today Penny and I went down to the beach and while it was not as busy as Memorial Day weekend it was busier than it has been before last weekend. Access to beach parking is still blocked on the high school side of the rock.

Today county health officials reported one new case of COVI-19 bringing the total cases in the county 270. Starting today the county will not be giving detailed information about the coronavirus on Saturdays and Sundays.

Beginning June 2, three libraries in San Luis Obispo County will begin offering curbside pickup services.

The county branches — San Luis Obispo, Atascadero, and Arroyo Grande — will offer pickup Tuesday through Friday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

County Libraries Director Chistoher Barnickel says some of the online services will continue as normal, including e-books, audiobooks, movies, zipbooks, and the online summer reading program.

Library cardholders can begin placing items on hold on the SLO Library’s website catalog beginning June 1 and pickups will begin on June 2. Library users can get text, email, and phone notifications when their items are ready for pick up.

Cardholders can check out up to 10 items at a time, with a three-week limit on print items and a one-week limit for other media items. Items can be picked up from any of the three regional library branches and materials can be returned at any of the county’s 14 branch locations in drop boxes or simply handed to staff during the curbside service interaction.

San Luis Obispo County Parks & Recreation announced Friday that public pools will be closed this summer because of COVID-19 restrictions.

According to the department, it is currently unknown when the pools will open again.

Some of the pools operated by County Parks include:

  • San Miguel
  • Shandon
  • Templeton
  • Cayucos
  • Cambria
  • Santa Margarita Lake
  • Coastal Dunes RV Park

Because of the closures, the county said they are also placing a hold on recruiting, hiring, and training lifeguards.

“This is not a decision we take lightly,” County Parks Director Nick Franco said in a press release. “We realize the significant impact this has on a number of families throughout our county.”

Officials said that gradual reopening is expected for pools that can limit the number of people and maintain physical distancing, but the county’s pools are relatively small and don’t fit that criteria.

County health officials are recommending face coverings in certain situations. Specifically, if people cannot maintain six feet of physical distance from others outside of the household, we recommend wearing cloth face coverings (such as bandanas or scarves, or homemade mouth and nose coverings), and only if the covering will not obstruct your ability to breathe. 

Wearing a cloth face covering may not protect you from getting COVID-19. But, if used correctly, wearing a cloth face covering may provide some additional protection. 

Summary of Findings Issues: Should cloth masks be worn during this COVID-19 pandemic in either the community setting or in places of business where food is sold? Conclusions: 1. There is no incontrovertible, compelling, or even a preponderance of evidence to support an Order to wear a cloth mask in the community setting at this time. 2. I am supportive of cashiers and customers wearing cloth masks inside a grocery store or any essential business if social distancing is difficult to maintain. Supporting evidence is not strong enough to issue an Order to mandate the use of cloth masks at this time; consumer preference is already accomplishing this in most parts of the County.

Introduction: A number of counties in California have adopted recommendations regarding the use of cloth masks in the community setting. The evidence is not conclusive regarding whether this practice is helpful or harmful in reducing the spread of COVID-19. There are convincing arguments both for and against the use of cloth masks in public places. In creating a guideline for San Luis Obispo County, we have considered the prevalence of COVID-19 in our community as well as our success in flattening the curve by implementing known infection control strategies such as strict social distancing. Note that local, state, and national guidelines, when they support the use of masks, uniformly support the use of cloth masks only and recommend against the use of medical masks (whether called surgical or procedure masks or N95 respirators). There is insufficient supply chain confidence of personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers and without adequate supplies of masks, gloves and gowns, our medical professionals are not only putting themselves at risk, they may be putting their patients at risk. Observations of patrons at retailers in various parts of San Luis Obispo County reveals that about half of people choosing to wear face masks in public are wearing medical-grade masks. We urge those of you who have a supply of unused medical-grade masks to donate these for use by local health care providers by emailing the County’s Emergency Operations Center at EOC-donations@co.slo.ca.usor call (805) 543-2444.

A divided Supreme Court on Friday rejected an emergency appeal by a California church that challenged state limits on attendance at worship services that have been imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Over the dissent of the four more conservative justices, Chief Justice John Roberts joined the court’s four liberals in turning away a request from the South Bay United Pentecostal Church in Chula Vista, California, in the San Diego area.

The church argued that limits on how many people can attend their services violate constitutional guarantees of religious freedom and had been seeking an order in time for services on Sunday. The church said it has crowds of 200 to 300 people for its services.

Roberts wrote in brief opinion that the restriction allowing churches to reopen at 25% of their capacity, with no more than 100 worshipers at a time, “appear consistent” with the First Amendment. Roberts said similar or more severe limits apply to concerts, movies, and sporting events “where large groups of people gather in close proximity for extended periods of time.”

Justice Brett Kavanaugh wrote in dissent that the restriction “discriminates against places of worship and in favor of comparable secular businesses. Such discrimination violates the First Amendment.” Kavanaugh pointed to supermarkets, restaurants, hair salons, cannabis dispensaries and other businesses that are not subject to the same restrictions.

Lower courts in California had previously turned down the churches’ requests.

The court also rejected an appeal from two churches in the Chicago area that objected to Gov. Jay Pritzker’s limit of 10 worshipers at religious services. Before the court acted, Pritzker modified the restrictions to allow for up to 100 people at a time. There were no recorded dissents.

Now that summer is here the amount of birds and their activity has been increasing.

A flock of birds flying over a grassy field

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The county has faced unsettled weather for the last couple of days.

A close up of a tree

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Copywrite MPFitch

Published by mpfitch

I am a retired disabled veteran and am actively involved with a Baptist Church on the Central Coast of CA. I am a photographer who likes to shoot portraits and scenic photographs.

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