Bay Area coronavirus updates | Tues., Aug. 25

The latest developments around the region related to the novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, as of Tuesday afternoon include:

  • Gov. Gavin Newsom said yesterday that he plans to release concrete reopening guidelines later this week for counties that fall off the state’s COVID-19 coronavirus monitoring list. Most of the greater Bay Area’s counties are on the monitoring list for elevated coronavirus case and hospitalization levels. Napa and Santa Cruz counties fell off the list over the last 10 days, allowing them to reopen indoor operations for businesses like hair salons and gyms as well as places of worship. The city of Berkeley is allowing certain outdoor activities, such as swimming in pools, getting haircuts from barbers, having small outdoor sports practices and holding wine tastings, to reopen Friday at 8 a.m. using COVID-19 safety measures. Outdoor swimming pools, in order to reopen, must adhere to regulations such as limiting the number of swimmers in shared areas, maintaining social distancing measures, closing water attractions, and encouraging sign-ups and staggering use for swimmers. Outdoor wine tasting following state COVID-19 guidelines will also be permitted. The guidelines necessary for reopening include tastings by appointment only, beverages must be poured by staff members, indoor areas must be closed to the public, and face coverings must be worn at all times except when eating or drinking.
  • The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has sowed chaos and isolation in Santa Clara County’s immigrant communities, making it harder to collect census data, a county official said Monday. Much like other metropolitan areas across the country, the pandemic has hit the county’s immigrant communities disproportionately, according to county Office of Immigrant Relations director Zelica Rodriguez. Roughly 60 percent of the county’s residents are immigrants or children of immigrants. Latino and Hispanic residents have been particularly hard-hit, according to county data, making up just over 25 percent of the county population but nearly 55 percent of the county’s coronavirus cases.
  • In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Walnut Creek is partnering with Shelter, Inc. and with St. Vincent de Paul Society for emergency rental and utility assistance for low-income residents. A total of $105,000 from the Community Development Block Grant funds and the separate Community Development Block Grant Stimulus Funds is available to support low-income households affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. These funds are only available to assist low-income families and individuals who are unable to pay rent or utility bills due to a reduction of work hours, furloughs, unemployment, and/or diagnosis with COVID-19.
  • Muni rail service shut down in San Francisco again for the next several weeks starting Tuesday, three days after it resumed following five months of being suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Muni Metro system had resumed Saturday but is shutting down for the foreseeable future after two splices in the subway overhead wire failed and someone in the system’s control center tested positive for COVID-19. Starting Tuesday, all rail service will be provided by bus. More details about how the closures are affecting various lines can be found at
  • California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said Tuesday that counties should begin issuing guidance for Labor Day weekend as soon as possible to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Ghaly warned that large family and social gatherings during the holiday weekend could dismantle the progress the state has made in recent weeks in curbing the spread of the coronavirus. As the state has vacillated between reopening and closing certain medium- and high-risk industries, Ghaly said the most pertinent thing public health officials have learned since the pandemic began is the role individual people play in following health and safety protocol.
  • As of Tuesday at 2:30 p.m., officials have confirmed the following number of cases around the greater Bay Area region (“+” number added since last check Mon., Aug. 24, unless otherwise noted):
    • Alameda County: 16,738 cases (+5), 234 deaths (Totals include Berkeley Health Department data)
    • Contra Costa County: 13,123 cases (+460), 171 deaths (+2)
    • Marin County: 5,942 cases (+63), 94 deaths (+8) (Totals include San Quentin State Prison)
    • Monterey County: 7,393 cases (+119), 53 deaths (+1)
    • Napa County: 1,365 cases (+18), 13 deaths
    • San Francisco County: 8,981 cases (+45), 77 deaths
    • San Mateo County: 7,788 cases (+118), 130 deaths (+2)
    • Santa Clara County: 16,306 cases (+155), 224 deaths
    • Santa Cruz County: 1,698 cases (+81), 7 deaths
    • Solano County: 5,231 cases (+25), 46 deaths
    • Sonoma County: 5,212 cases (+92), 73 deaths (+3)
    • Statewide: 673,095 cases (+4,480), 12,257 deaths

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