Thank you to Placer County firefighters!

In a year where California has seen the previous record for the number of acres burned by wildfire double, we all owe a huge debt of gratitude to our firefighters.  These brave individuals work incredibly long hours in dangerous and strenuous conditions, often battling high temperatures and steep terrain, in order to keep us safe and protect our property. Although it would be difficult to adequately thank these brave men and women for all they do, community leaders came together last week to show appreciation.The Placer County Board of Supervisors hosted a luncheon for firefighters at the CAL FIRE/Placer County Fire Department Headquarters in Auburn, and the United Auburn Indian Community posted messages of appreciation on billboards at various points along Interstate 80 and Highway 65 for firefighters returning home from fires throughout California and surrounding states.  

The United Auburn Indian Community sponsored billboards thanking firefighters for their work.

These were small gestures compared to the life-saving work our firefighters do, but I’m glad we had the opportunity to let these heroes know how much we appreciate them!

COVID Update

As we continue to navigate through the impacts of COVID-19, our Health and Human Services Division, including our Public Health Office, continues to focus attention on areas that will have the most impact for Placer County communities. Staff continue to meet with Placer County’s superintendent of schools multiple times a week, and have developed a list of Frequently Asked Questions that is updated and posted online on a weekly basis. County staff also meet regularly with mayors, the business community, hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and correctional facilities, among others, in order to ensure ongoing communication and coordination.

Several weeks ago Placer County’s improved case rate and testing positivity rate allowed us to progress into the “orange/moderate tier” in the State’s colored tier framework within the Blueprint for a Safer Economy; however it is likely that our increased case rate numbers will push us back into the red tier, which will mean reduced capacity for our restaurants and other restrictions on local businesses.

This will have a huge impact on our local businesses, particularly as we move into colder weather and outdoor seating is a less viable option for restaurants. We all want COVID-19 to be over, but we have to do the work to make that happen. The longer this virus is present, the greater the impact to our families, our businesses and our communities. Please do your part to help our community by following guidance issued by public health officials. Avoid large gatherings, wash your hands, physically distance yourself from others and wear a face covering. We all need to work together on this.

Placer Shares Update

Placer County continues to use funding from the federal CARES Act to support local businesses and nonprofit organizations through our Placer Shares program. The application cycle for our second round of Placer Shares grant funds for small businesses and non-profit organizations closed on October 23rd. I am happy to see so many local businesses taking advantage of this opportunity.  Nearly 300 applications were submitted requesting almost $1.6 million for small businesses throughout Placer County, 48 of which were submitted by businesses in Auburn and 21 from businesses in North Lake Tahoe. These applications are in addition to the 1,250 grants totaling $7.5 million that were awarded to priority small businesses and non-profits during the initial round of Placer Shares grant funding that closed September 7th.  At our October 27th meeting the Board of Supervisors also approved an additional $5 million in CARES Act funding for a future grant cycle that will provide funding for anchor businesses and social safety net programs impacted by COVID-19. See below for additional information and keep an eye out in future newsletters for more information on how to access these funds.

Take a moment to fill out our Broadband/Internet survey

After hearing concerns from many residents regarding the state of internet connectivity in some areas of Placer County, staff in our communications and IT divisions have teamed up to conduct a survey to identify the specific connectivity needs within our communities. The more participation we receive, the better we will understand the scope, magnitude and location of the internet connectivity issues.  Please take a moment to complete the survey, and be sure to share it with your friends and neighbors.  The more the merrier!

The Internet Service Survey will be available until November 15th.  Respondents are encouraged to fill out a separate survey for each address where they pay for internet service, which could include businesses and rental properties as well.  If you need assistance with the survey, call the  helpline at 530-886-2263 or email your questions to broadbandsurvey@placer.ca.gov.

Wear face coverings!

I am continuing to ask all our residents to take the precautions recommended:  wear a face covering, wash your hands frequently, and physically distance from those outside your household. There has been so much research that validates the claims that wearing a face covering helps to reduce the spread of COVID-19. We are all responsible for our own actions, but please remember that your actions with regard to wearing a face covering affect the public health and economy of your entire community.

Please don’t hesitate to contact my office if you have questions or need any assistance with County issues or concerns.

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