Business / Economy

Friday, May 22, 2020

Lost Coast Outpost:Trinidad Council Votes to Delay MOU with Rancheria

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 4:33 PM

An artistic rendering of the proposed hotel project at Cher-Ae Heights Casino off Scenic Drive south of Trinidad. - SUBMITTED
  • SUBMITTED
  • An artistic rendering of the proposed hotel project at Cher-Ae Heights Casino off Scenic Drive south of Trinidad.
The Lost Coast Outpost reports that the Trinidad City Council on Thursday night voted against entering into a memorandum of understanding with the Trinidad Rancheria related to providing water for its hotel.

The council decided instead to wait until the city’s Planning Commission completes a draft water policy. Read the full story here.
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Thursday, May 21, 2020

List of Humboldt Retailers Certified to Reopen Continues to Grow

Posted By on Thu, May 21, 2020 at 5:27 PM

certification.jpg
The county of Humboldt is reporting today that more than 235 local retailers have received reopening certifications from the Emergency Operations Center.

According to the county, the businesses have submitted plans that “ensure the safety of employees and customers alike with enhanced staff training, screening for illness, thorough disinfection and physical distancing.” Residents are encouraged to check for a certificate displayed near the entrance when visiting local retail businesses.

For a full list and more information, click here.
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Why Mass Gatherings Terrify Health Officials

Posted By on Thu, May 21, 2020 at 1:19 PM

MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
Over the past week, Humboldt County Public Health Officer Teresa Frankovich has repeatedly expressed the concern that some local residents are ignoring current prohibitions on gatherings. And whether social functions or church services, the Journal has fielded a growing body of tips and reports to support that her concerns are well founded.

In the midst of all this, two local casinos — operated by sovereign tribes and tribal lands, and thus not subject to state or local health orders — have announced they will be re-opening in the coming days over Frankovich’s objections.

“The gathering of people is a significant risk,” she said, noting that one need only look at case clusters linked to large gatherings in other areas of the country for proof. “As careful as [the casinos] might be … you cannot get away from the fact that we’re putting large numbers of people into a space indoors for extended periods of time.”

As Frankovich suggested, looking at outbreak clusters from across the country can offer some insight into why health officials are so concerned about the prospect of large groups of people from different households getting together, no matter the setting.

The Centers for Disease Control has studied and reported on two separate clusters, both of which began in mid-March.


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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Lost Coast Outpost: Times-Standard Dismantles Printing Press, Lays Off Production Staff and Sends Printing Duties to Chico

Posted By on Wed, May 20, 2020 at 5:27 PM

Front steps of Times-Standard. - PHOTO BY THADEUS GREENSON
  • Photo by Thadeus Greenson
  • Front steps of Times-Standard.
The Lost Coast Outpost is reporting that the Times-Standard has downsized once again as its printing operations are moving to Chico.

According to the report, the paper has laid off 12 production staff members.

The layoffs don't come as a surprise though as last October, the Times-Standard had laid off the majority of its reporting staff, leaving only six reporters. Read the NCJ past coverage of the Times-Standard here.

Read the Lost Coast Outposts full story here
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Friday Night Market Offers Virtual Vending for Local Businesses

Posted By on Wed, May 20, 2020 at 11:13 AM

Humboldt County won't be ready for gatherings by Eureka's Friday Night Market's original opening date of June 5. Until it gets the all-clear from county health and safety officials, Humboldt Made is setting up an online marketplace for local businesses, taking orders and arranging pick-up.

The crowd listening to live music at a Friday Night Market last year. - PHOTO BY MARK MCKENNA
  • Photo by Mark McKenna
  • The crowd listening to live music at a Friday Night Market last year.

In an email, Executive Director Alanna Powell says the online version of the market at www.eurekafridaynightmarket.com will feature the same variety of local products, ranging from food and artisan crafts to apparel, as well as a restaurant takeout listings and a gallery of local art. The public will be able to peruse and order on the site, and pick up their purchases at the Eureka Visitor Center. There will be a 15 percent processing fee for vendors, who cans submit up to five products to the market.
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Pandemic Food Stamps Offer up to $365 Per Child

Posted By on Wed, May 20, 2020 at 9:58 AM

California is sending pandemic food cards to qualifying students. In this file photo, Antionette Martinez and her son Caden, 5, who receive CalFresh, do their weekly grocery shop at FoodMaxx on July 26, 2019. - ANNE WERNIKOFF FOR CALMATTERS
  • Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters
  • California is sending pandemic food cards to qualifying students. In this file photo, Antionette Martinez and her son Caden, 5, who receive CalFresh, do their weekly grocery shop at FoodMaxx on July 26, 2019.

Families with children who qualify for free or reduced-price meals at their schools — regardless of immigration status — may notice something in the mail to help them buy groceries.

California is issuing one-time food stamps with credits of up to $365 per child to help qualifying families get through the coronavirus outbreak. The Pandemic-Electronic Benefit Transfer card, or P-EBT, from the Department of Social Services is an emergency disaster benefit that can be used to buy food and groceries, including online at Walmart and Amazon.

The first cards arrived last week for families receiving CalFresh, Medi-Cal or foster care benefits as a supplement to their EBT card. The second phase, which starts Friday, requires low-income families to apply at here.

The deadline to apply is June 30.


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Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Cher-Ae Heights Casino to Reopen Friday May 22

Posted By on Tue, May 19, 2020 at 6:25 PM

Roulette at Cher-Ae Heights. - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • Roulette at Cher-Ae Heights.
Cher-Ae Heights casino announced today that it will reopen on Friday, May 22.

According to a press release, the casino will close from 2 a.m. to 8 a.m. to clean and sanitize common surface areas and has installed plexiglass throughout the casino to act as safe health barriers.

Bear River Casino was the first local casino to announce plans to re-open, and Humboldt County Public Health Officer Teresa Frankovich was clear that she opposed the move.

“What I can say is this is not the time,” she said. “We are far too early in this and ultimately there is no way to get around the fact that these are mass gatherings. It’s an entertainment venue and people are not only together in large numbers but they’re together for large periods of time, which extends risk. … I don’t think it’s the time. I would clearly oppose the opening of casinos right now in our community, although I’d be happy to have ongoing conversations about when might be the right time.”

Read the casino's press release below:
Cher-Ae Heights Casino opening Friday, May 22nd
5/18/20We are pleased to announce that we will reopen the casino this coming Friday, May 22nd at 8:00 am! The safety of our guests and employees is of the utmost priority. Our employees have spent the last 3 months researching safety precautions through medical professionals and recommendations by the Public Health Department. In order to create a safe and clean environment we will close every night from 2:00am to 8:00am to sanitize our property. Our employees have been trained and are committed to making sure it is thorough. We have purchased and installed plexiglass which has been placed strategically throughout the casino in order to create safe health barriers

SAFETY PROCEDURES AND IMPLEMENTATION

● All employees & guests are required to wear face masks. NO EXCEPTIONS
● Social distancing will be mandatory throughout the entire casino floor and bingo hall
● Guests must check in at the front entrance to ensure masks are securely worn
● An employee will scan temperatures of each guest prior to entry to ensure they are below 100 F temp
● Upon entrance guests will be required to use our hand washing stations
● There will be no smoking or alcohol until further notice
● Plexiglass is installed at Cashier Stations, Crown Club, Bingo check-in, Gift Shop and Sunrise Grill
● Table games have limited seating per table and have been further distanced for social distancing

TEMPORARY HOURS OF OPERATION

Seniors 55+ 8:00am - 10:00am Everyday
General Public 10:00am -2:00am Everyday
Sunrise Grill 9:00am - 10:00pm Monday - Thursday

● Sunset Restaurant and Firewater Lounge are closed until further notice

TABLE GAMES
Wednesday - Saturday
4:00pm - 2:00am

BINGO
Wednesday - Saturday
6:15pm Warm Ups
6:30pm Early Birds
7:00pm Regular Games
Sunday
12:15pm Warm Ups
12:30pm Early Birds
1:00pm Regular Games

The gift shop will be open and only two (2) guests will be allowed at one time in accordance with our social distancing procedures.

I assure you Cher-Ae Heights is fully committed to following recommended health and safety protocols to protect our employees and guests. We will continue to monitor health advisories to re-evaluate and make adjustments in the coming weeks and months.

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to welcoming you back!

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Frankovich Modifies Shelter-in-Place Order to Allow Additional Businesses to Reopen Upon Safety Plan Approval

Posted By on Tue, May 19, 2020 at 5:14 PM

Humboldt County Public Health Officer Teresa Frankovich and Sheriff William Honsal talk COVID-19 at last night's virtual town hall meeting. - COURTESY OF DHHS
  • Courtesy of DHHS
  • Humboldt County Public Health Officer Teresa Frankovich and Sheriff William Honsal talk COVID-19 at last night's virtual town hall meeting.
Humboldt County Health Officer Teresa Frankovich issued an Order of the Health Officer to modify the shelter-in-place to allow additional businesses to reopen once their safety plans are approved.

The order is part of "Stage Two" of the county's reopening plan to allow businesses with a lower risk of COVID-19 transmission to resume operations.

“I want to open businesses as fast as safely possible, so Public Health will follow the data very closely to determine the next steps forward for our county,” Frankovich said in the press release. “We need to be thoughtful and consider all aspects of our community’s health, including economic and mental health as we plan for further reopenings.”

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Monday, May 18, 2020

Ferndale Enterprise: Humboldt County Fair Board Cancels this Year's Fair

Posted By on Mon, May 18, 2020 at 8:00 PM

The midway rides were a popular way to catch a cool breeze. - PHOTO BY MARK LARSON
  • Photo by Mark Larson
  • The midway rides were a popular way to catch a cool breeze.
The Ferndale Enterprise is reporting that the Humboldt County Fair Board of Directors voted to cancel this year's fair due to concerns over losing money because of decreased attendance, lack of sponsors and because large crowds may not be permitted.

Check out Ferndale Enterprise's tweet about the fair below:


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Saturday, May 16, 2020

Huffman Cites 'Historic Crisis' Explaining $3 Trillion Stimulus Vote

Posted By on Sat, May 16, 2020 at 6:39 AM

Jared Huffman. - CONGRESS
  • Congress
  • Jared Huffman.
North Coast Rep. Jared Huffman joined 207 of his congressional colleagues yesterday in voting to approve the HEROES Act, a $3 trillion COVID-19 stimulus bill.

“America is facing a historic crisis," Huffman said in a press release after voting for the bill, which comes after the $2 trillion CARES Act that Congress passed in late March. "We are months into this pandemic, and still have not seen an adequate, coherent response from the administration that meets the urgency of the threat gripping the nation. Today we passed a bill that better reflects the priorities of the Democratic Caucus and our sense of what we need to do to meet this extraordinary challenge."

The massive 1,800-page bill, officially titled the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act, would provide another round of $1,200 stimulus checks to most Americans, give essential workers a raise and increased health insurance coverage, extend the $600 per week federal expansion of unemployment benefits through the end of the year, revamp the Paycheck Protection Program to be more inclusive and give businesses more flexibility and create a $100 billion emergency rental assistance program. It would also pump roughly $1 trillion in financial aid to state and local governments and invest $75 billion in COVID-19 testing. It also would provide $100 million in fisheries relief.

The legislation is expected to face heavy opposition in the Republican controlled Senate, where Maj. Leader Mitch McConnell has already called it a "big laundry list of priorities" that has "no chance of becoming law."

"We aren’t waiting to please Mitch McConnell or Trump-minded officials," Huffman said in the press release. "The American people need immediate help, and I want them to know we hear them and are going to fight for their needs. This bill doesn’t include everything I want to see, but it is about keeping the lights on in state and local governments and hospitals — giving lifeline support for folks that desperately need it. This crisis isn’t going away any time soon. It requires unprecedented federal response, and Congress has a responsibility to ensure families, small businesses, and states and cities have the relief they need to weather the long road ahead.”

Meanwhile, the Times-Standard reports that $28.8 million in funding available through the CARES Act has been allocated to North Coast health care providers. Included in that is $23.8 million for St. Joseph Health Northern California LLC, which includes St. Joseph and Redwood Memorial hospitals, as well as Santa Rosa Memorial and Queen of the Valley Medical Center. Local Brius-owned skilled nursing homes received another $1 million, according to the story, with Hospice of Humboldt taking home $500,000.

See the full release from Huffman's office copied below:

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