The tsunami of news about the current coronavirus outbreak and now the reopenings can be overwhelming. To help you navigate through what you need to know -- KPIX.com/KPIX 5 News/CBSN Bay Area -- will be publishing a news roundup each morning of the top coronavirus and reopening-related stories so you can start your day with the latest updated developments. COVID-19 Reopening Roundup: Newsom Hits ‘Dimmer Switch’ On Reopenings; ‘Millionaires Tax’ Gains Movement – CBS San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — The tsunami of news about the current coronavirus outbreak and now the reopenings can be overwhelming. To help you navigate through what you need to know — KPIX.com/KPIX 5 News/CBSN Bay Area — will be publishing a news roundup each morning of the top coronavirus and reopening-related stories so you can start your day with the latest updated developments.


Good News — Neighbors Helping Neighbors

San Francisco Artist Sells Portraits, Donates Funds To People Affected By COVID-19
SAN FRANCISCO — People are coming up with a lot of creative ways to give during the COVID-19 pandemic, including one person whose generosity started with her paintbrush. Jhina Alvarado recently presented Pamela Illes with a portrait of Illes’ father, who recently died of COVID-19. “I love it. That’s my Dad,” Illes affirmed. “The fact that she loves it, and it looks like him means a lot,” nodded Alvarado. Alvarado created the piece as part of the service project she began while sheltering in place in her San Francisco home. Read More

For Uplifting Stories Of Neighbors Helping Neighbors Visit Our Better Together Section


UCSF Doctor Says COVID-19 ‘California Miracle’ Is Over Now… We Are Just Like Other States
SAN FRAANCISCO — A couple of months ago Dr. Bob Wachter, Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco, was touting the “California Miracle,” documenting the state’s success at flattening the curve. Now, as COVID-19 cases increase dramatically, Dr. Wachter told KPIX 5’s Joe Vazquez, “the miracle is over now. We’re just like a lot of other states. We dodged the first bullet, but we’re catching this one.” “I think we got a little complacent. We were opening things up. That wasn’t inappropriate. It’s part of the deal, is try to lock things down to give yourself a chance to get smarter about the virus. Building capacity and build testing and build contact tracing and get PPE. We did all that.” Read Transcript Of Entire Interview

San Quentin COVID-19 Outbreak Spreads To Susanville Prison, Threatens Inmate Firefighting Work Crews
SACRAMENTO — A new threat from the out-of-control COVID-19 outbreak at San Quentin State Prison, where nearly a third of the inmate population has become infected with the disease, came to light Wednesday during a state Senate hearing probing the handling of the crisis by corrections officials. Sen. Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley), who chairs the Public Safety Subcommittee, said the transfer of inmates from San Quentin to the California Correctional Center in Susanville has now triggered an outbreak at that prison, which houses vitally-needed inmate wildfire-fighting teams. “The subsequent transfers from San Quentin to the correctional facility in Susanville — this happened after the transfer (of infected inmates) from Chino (to San Quentin) now has that facility with over 200 cases,” she said. “Susanville is the pipeline for our fire camps — and we’re in fire season.” Read More

Former Inmate’s Describes ‘Filthy, Contaminated’ Conditions Inside San Quentin Amid Growing COVID-19 Outbreak
SAN QUENTIN — More than a thousand inmates at San Quentin have tested positive for the coronavirus and health experts have warned the outbreak is quickly growing out-of-control. In a chilling, firsthand account of what it’s like inside The Q, an inmate who was released last week, says the prison conditions are filthy and contaminated with germs. He told KPIX5 something needs to be done before everyone inside is exposed to COVID-19. He goes by the name, ‘Sam’. Sam said he made a promise to himself that once he was out free, he would expose the unsafe living conditions inside the prison. Read More

COVID-19 Closures A Huge Blow Bay Area Businesses Hoping To Recoup Losses July 4 Weekend
CONCORD — Gov. Gavin Newsom’s announcement to ‘hit the dimmer switch’ on reopening, hit the business community hard. They were banking on the July 4th weekend to recoup some of their losses, and shutting down indoor restaurants and bars may do very little to stop the spread of coronavirus, according to one Bay Area health official. At Todos Santos Plaza, many restaurants have been fortunate to have an outdoor dining component to their business. A health official tells KPIX 5 the spread of COVID-19 isn’t happening here, it’s happening closer to home. At Lima restaurant in downtown Concord, indoor dining was supposed to start July 1.
“We started hiring people, we start preparing menus, ordering more product, and then for what? For nothing,” says owner and chef John Marquez. Read More

New Contact Tracing Apps Need Access To Users’ Private Data To Control Spread Of COVID-19
SAN FRANCISCO — With coronavirus infections once again on the rise, contact tracing is ever more critical to control the spread of the virus. A growing number of new apps are designed to help do that. Some are privately developed, others are developed by governments. Here in the U.S, only four states are using them as part of their pandemic strategy. But in other countries they’re getting popular. Brett Hall just started using a contact tracing app for COVID-19 called Corona-Warn, developed by the German Government. “I heard about it and downloaded it pretty quickly, actually, on the day that it was released officially,” said Hall. Read More

California Closes Indoor Operations For Restaurants, Museums, Other Sectors To Slow COVID-19 Spread
SACRAMENTO — California Governor Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday afternoon that the state would be shutting down indoor operations for restaurants, zoos, museums and several other sectors effective immediately due to concerns over the recent spike in COVID-19 cases. The governor said that state officials were focusing on certain sectors of the economy where the spread of coronavirus is more likely to occur to mitigate the spread. Effective immediately, Newsom said California is instructing specific sectors to close indoor operations due to the risk of spread. The new mandate applied to all counties that have been on the state’s county monitoring list for three consecutive days. Read More

COVID-19 Surge: 2 More Deaths, 210 New Cases In Santa Clara County
SAN JOSE — Health officials in Santa Clara County announced 210 new cases of the coronavirus and two additional deaths, as the month of July begins with a surge of infections across the state. As of Wednesday afternoon, 158 people in the county have died from COVID-19 and 4,572 people have tested positive since the start of the pandemic. Officials said 80 people with the virus are currently in county hospitals. The announcement of more than 200 new cases in Santa Clara County comes as Gov. Gavin Newsom announced nearly 5,900 new COVID-19 cases were confirmed statewide on Tuesday. Newsom reported 110 people in California died from the virus over a 24 hour span, one of the highest single-day death tolls since the pandemic began. Read More

Minimum Wage Hike Helps Workers During Pandemic But Timing Is Tough For Struggling Businesses
ALAMEDA — Some Bay Area workers will see a bump in their next paycheck due to a scheduled increase in the minimum wage. Raising the minimum wage will certainly help a lot of people, but during this pandemic some struggling business owners in Alameda say the timing is a bit awkward. As more and more people are out of work, looking for jobs due to the pandemic, the minimum wage in Alameda has increased from $13.50 to $15.00 dollars an hour. But the coronavirus has hurt businesses, too and some may be closing for good. The mayor of Alameda, Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft, supports the wage hike, and said she understands times are tough. Read More

Benicia Firefighter Tests Positive For COVID-19
BENICIA — A Benicia firefighter informed the city Wednesday that they tested positive for COVID-19. The source of the infection has not been determined, and the Benicia Fire Department said it is working with Solano County Public Health staff to determine the source. No city staff or community members are known to have been exposed to the firefighter during the firefighter’s infectious period, fire officials said. They said the firefighter had no fever or symptoms during their last on-duty shift and the firefighter is in self-quarantine at home and has not required hospitalization. Read More

Warriors Summer Basketball Camp Postponed After Staffer Tests Positive For COVID-19
OAKLAND — The Golden State Warriors virtual summer basketball camp has been postponed after a worker was diagnosed with coronavirus. The employee works at the teams facility in downtown Oakland, officials said. According to a statement, the facility will be temporarily closed for “thorough sanitation.” For more information go to the camps website, https://gswacademy.com/ Read More

San Francisco Health Department Warns Of Spike In COVID-19 Hospitalization Rate
SAN FRANCISCO — Health officials in San Francisco on Wednesday afternoon warned of an alarming spike in the city’s coronavirus hospitalization rate this week. While the new case rate for San Francisco remained relatively low at just under six new cases per 100,000 residents in the city — the equivalent of about 52 new cases total each day — the rate of weekly change in hospitalizations shot up 57 percent in the past three days. “We are seeing increased cases and increased rates of hospitalizations due to COVID. Our indicators are sensitive to the changes that will impact our community,” a tweet posted to the San Francisco Department of Public Health account read. Read More

Pacifica Mayor Closes Beaches Following Gov. Newsom’s Announcement On Reopening Rollbacks
PACIFICA — Catch the waves while you can in Pacifica; all beaches – local and state – will be closed starting Friday at sunrise. The decision from Mayor Deirdre Martin comes just hours after Governor Gavin Newsom announced the closure of state beach parking lots ahead of the Fourth of July weekend. “He closed our parking lots, so it’s easier for us to enforce all of the regulations when they’re all-inclusive,” Martin told KPIX 5. “No fireworks, no parking, no beach-going.” Martin says the crowds on Memorial Day weekend were problematic and she doesn’t want a post-holiday spike in COVID-19 cases among her residents. Read More

Drastic Drops: Median San Francisco 1-Bedroom Rent Down Nearly 12% Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
SAN FRANCISCO — Rents for one bedroom apartments in San Francisco in June were down nearly 12 percent from this time last year, one of the clearest signs yet on how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted the Bay Area rental market. According to an analysis from rental website Zumper, the median rent for a one bedroom dipped to $3,280 in June, down 2.4 percent from May and down 11.8 percent from June 2019. Meanwhile, the median rent for a two bedroom in San Francisco dipped to $4,340 a month, down 9.6 from June of last year. “This is the strangest downturn I’ve ever seen,” J.J. Panzer with the Real Management Company told KPIX 5. Rent in Oakland dropped 2.1 percent last month. In San Jose, rent went down 5 percent. Read More

San Francisco Officials Back ‘Millionaires Tax’ To Counter COVID-19 Fiscal Losses
SAN FRANCISCO — Supervisors have unanimously approved a resolution urging state lawmakers to look into new ways create revenue to help with the state’s economic recovery in the face of the COVID-19 coronavirus, like taxing millionaires. The resolution, authored by Supervisor Dean Preston, proposes a transfer tax on the highest value real estate transactions worth $10 million or more. It’s estimated to generate between $100 million and $150 million annually, Preston’s office said. “The gap between rich and poor, even before this global pandemic, was unacceptable,” Preston said in a statement. “But during this time and in the post-COVID period, we need to take every possible measure, both locally and at the state level, to make sure we can continue to fund the absolutely necessary social services for the people who need it most.” Read More

July 4th: Rohnert Park Bans Fireworks In Commercial Parking Lots To Prevent Large Gatherings
ROHNERT PARK — Rohnert Park, which has been among a small number of Bay Area cites to sanction the sale of state-approved fireworks, has passed an urgency ordinance banning the use of fireworks in commercial parking lots this year. The ordinance was passed to discourage public gatherings during the novel coronavirus health emergency. The city notes in the urgency ordinance that it “anticipates significant gatherings during the Fourth of July holiday period to use fireworks, and normally generates large gatherings in public spaces and commercial lots.” Rohnert Park’s move comes as Dublin, another Bay Area city that allows for fireworks, restricted their use to only in neighborhoods with single family homes. The sale of state-approved “safe-and-sane” fireworks by permitted vendors is still allowed from July 2 to 4. Read More

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