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County Health Order, Updated Restaurant Operating Procedures, Free COVID-19 Testing, Digital Workshops for Arts & Arts Organizations

October 30, 2020

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Periodically, the City of Oakland’s Economic & Workforce Development Department (EWDD) will send important updates to businesses, nonprofits, independent contractors and our partner organizations who support them. These are just highlights of available resources. For information on all of the support programs available, please visit our Business & Worker Resource web page.
Alameda County Public Health Orders Updated
Starting Friday, October 23, Alameda County permitted additional activities including:
  • Indoor family entertainment centers may open activities that are naturally socially distanced, like bowling alleys and climbing walls, up to 25% capacity
  • Indoor dining up to 25% capacity or less than 100 people, whichever is less
  • Indoor worship services up to 25% capacity or less than 100 people, whichever is less
  • Indoor movie theaters up to 25% capacity or less than 100 people per screen, whichever is less
  • Expansion of indoor retail and malls up to 50% of capacity and permitting limited food courts
  • Expansion of indoor gyms and fitness centers up to 25% of capacity, but indoor pools are not permitted to open
  • Expansion of outdoor non-contact fitness classes up to 20 people including the instructor
  • Expansion of wedding and funeral services up to 25% of venue capacity or 100 people, whichever is less

Alameda County will also align with the State’s recently released guidance on gatherings. Gatherings of a stable group of no more than three households replaces the County’s Social Bubble and includes a limit of no more than 20 people. Face coverings must be worn except when eating or drinking, gatherings should occur outdoors, and people who do not live in the same home should keep at least 6 feet of distance from each other. While singing or playing instruments is permitted, the singer or musician must be a member of one of the three households.

Alameda County moves at a more measured pace than the State in order to avoid a sharp rise in cases. Case rates are rising across the country and Alameda County health officials continue to monitor the impact of activities that were previously permitted locally.

For the list of activities that are currently open and not open in Alameda County, visit: https://covid-19.acgov.org/sip.page Businesses must implement, and residents must comply with important COVID-19 safety measures. COVID-19 protocols and guidance are available at: https://covid-19.acgov.org For technical assistance, please email: COVIDRecovery@acgov.org
Alameda County also updated their Restaurant Operating Procedures. Here are the highlights:
  • Umbrellas, canopies, and other shade structures, if approved, must be minimally opened on three sides to allow for the free flow of air through the space.
  • Outdoor dining proposals must include specific details of any proposed wind screening structure in a written plan and shall also include the specifications for the proposed heating device(s) to be used.
  • Only certain types of heating devices can be used under tents, canopies, sun shelters or other temporary physical structures. Per California Fire Code, open flames or other devices emitting flame, fire or heat or any flammable or combustible liquids, gas, charcoal or other cooking device or any other unapproved devices are not permitted inside or located within 20 feet of the tent or membrane structures while open to the public unless approved by the fire code official. Review these safety tips from the Oakland Fire Department. 
  • Wind screen walls that include but are not limited to temporary and movable tall potted plants or temporary and moveable physical structures, must have the ability to stand on their own and be braced for wind load and should be no more than four (4) feet in height.
  • Any new outdoor seating area, to increase social distancing, must be approved by applicable local jurisdiction (City Zoning / Fire Department). To assist business owners in meeting social distancing requirements, the City launched the Flex Street Initiative to allow use of the public-right-of-way. Learn more at: www.oaklandca.gov/FlexStreets

The new Restaurant Operating Procedures are available in English, Chinese and Spanish and are posted at the Department of Environmental Health’s website at: https://deh.acgov.org/covid-19.page
New Alameda County Health Orders Allow Additional Business Operations
On Tuesday, October 27, the County of Alameda and Alameda Health System launched a new COVID-19 testing site at the Henry J. Kaiser Center, 10 Tenth Street in Oakland. You do not need a doctor’s note or insurance and you will not be asked about immigration status.

Any adult can receive a test on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. Essential workers will be prioritized for appointments from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday and Thursdays. Children, two and older, can be tested on Saturdays. Appointments can be made at: https://ac.fulgentgenetics.com/

Digital Workshops to Strengthen Oakland’s Cultural Community
To help Oakland-based arts organizations and artists develop a robust online digital presence, 14 free, virtual workshops will be held between November 9 to December 10. Through the City’s CARES Act funding, Youth Speaks, in partnership with YR Media and Zoo Labs, will train participants on:
·       Available tools for programming and production
·       Producing content utilizing low-cost tools and technology
·       The aesthetic associated with virtual presentations
·       Social media and marketing strategies
·       Strategies on how to monetize one’s presence
For details on the workshop offerings and registration, please visit: lifeisliving.org/

Application Deadline for Home-Based Business Grants Extended
The deadline to apply to the Oakland CARES Act Home-Based Business Grant Program has been extended to Monday, November 9. The program will distribute $500,000 in grants of $2,000 to $4,000 to home-based, for-profit businesses in Oakland. Working Solutions, a Bay Area nonprofit, is administering the program. Online applications and eligibility requirements in four languages are available at: workingsolutions.org/oakland-home-based-grants  
Free Legal Advice and Assistance for Commercial Leaseholders
Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area (LCCRSF) is providing legal advice and assistance on lease negotiations to small businesses that have suffered revenue losses due to COVID-19. LCCRSF will provide legal assistance through commercial leasing webinars, one-hour consultations, and longer-term legal assistance.

LCCRSF will hold webinars on commercial lease negotiations during COVID-19 through the end of 2020. While the 60- to 75-minute webinars are free, advance registration is required. Presented by volunteer attorneys from local law firms, the webinars will be offered in various languages as noted in Upcoming Webinars listings below.

For more individualized legal advice, Oakland small business owners will be able to request hour-long, one-on-one consultations with an attorney. To access this free service, business owners complete an online application at: http://bit.ly/OaklandLeaseAdvice

Longer-term legal assistance, which may include lease negotiation, pre-litigation and settlement negotiations or representation in a court proceeding, will be available for up to 16 Oakland low-income small business owners who cannot afford to hire an attorney on their own.

Business owners can access these free legal services at: https://lccrsf.org/legal-services-for-oakland-small-businesses/
City Strengthens Street Sweeping Efforts with Resumed Parking Management
In a growing effort to provide cleaner streets and sidewalks in Oakland neighborhoods, the City of Oakland will resume parking management operations on Monday, November 9. The City’s goal is to provide cleaner streets, and hopes that vehicle owners will resume moving their vehicles to comply with street sweeping schedules and avoid citations. Parking enforcement staff have been distributing warning flyers on vehicle windshields in neighborhoods that will be affected. The City will provide no-penalty warning citations through December 31. Vehicle owners are entitled to one warning citation for violations of O.M.C. 10.28.240 in that time, and are subject to penalties for subsequent and other violations.

The City continues to enforce other parking regulations in service of vibrant commercial districts, public safety and public health, including:
  • Parking meters
  • Red curbs, yellow curbs, white curbs
  • Blue curbs and spaces
  • Fire hydrants
  • Sidewalk and crosswalk blocking
  • Double-parking and bike lane violations
  • Wheelchair ramp obstruction
  • Essential construction work and other "No Parking" signage
  • Unauthorized use of disabled person parking placards

Enforcement of Resident Parking Permit (RPP) areas remains suspended while staff completes an analysis that includes a survey of permit holders.

The City will maintain standard pricing at all street meters and in City-owned garages and lots. Shoppers are reminded that parking at street meters and in metered City parking lots is free on Sundays year-round. Time limits still apply.

To request parking enforcement assistance or for more information, contact OAK311 by dialing 311 or (510) 615-5566, e-mailing OAK311@oaklandca.gov, reporting online at https://bit.ly/33lKLqe, or using the free OAK311 mobile app for Apple and Android devices.
Upcoming Online Workshops & Webinars
Serie de 12 Tallaeres para Emprendedores Hispanos
Jueves hasta el 17 de diciembre
California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Gratis

Entrepreneurs Workshop Series
Thursdays through December 17
Mandela Partners
Sliding Scale: $25 - $100

Wednesday, November 4, Noon
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free

SEO Optimization for Small Businesses
Tuesday, November 10, 1 – 4 p.m.
East Bay SCORE
$15

Commercial Lease Negotiation Webinar (Vietnamese and English)
Tuesday, November 10, 5 p.m.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Planning Your Business
Wednesday, November 11, 2 – 4 p.m.
Alameda County SBDC
Free

Finding Customers/Marketing Your Idea
Wednesday, November 18, 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
East Bay SCORE
$15

Tuesday, November 17, 10 – 11 a.m.
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
Free

Thursday, November 19, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
City of Oakland Workforce Development Board
Free

Thursday, November 19, 3 p.m.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Commercial Lease Negotiation Webinar (Cantonese and English)
Wednesday, December 2, 5 p.m.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Wednesday, December 16, Noon
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free
Resources for Re-Opening
Visit the City’s Planning Resources for Business Re-Opening website for the latest information on resources to support re-opening, including:
  • Parking meters
  • Alameda County Public Health Department’s Mask Required for Entry Posters
  • County screening guidance for employers in multiple languages
  • Self-assessment guidance for workers in multiple languages
  • Information on cleaning/disinfecting businesses
  • Workplace Safety
  • ReOpening Guide signs by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Oaklandish and the Economic Recovery Advisory Council, in four languages.

If one of your employees tests positive, please contact Alameda County’s COVID Workplace team at COVIDWorkplace@acgov.org or call (510) 268-2101 to submit a case report and for guidance and next steps. Businesses are required to notify the Alameda County Public Health Department of all positive COVID-19 cases. To learn about COVID-19 testing sites in Oakland, visit https://www.oaklandca.gov/resources/how-to-get-tested.

To help the City gauge COVID-19 impacts to your business and what resources would help, please take our brief Business Re-opening and Recovery Survey.
Ongoing Business Support
A list of up-to-date resources, including information about worker benefits, grants, loans and support services for small businesses, nonprofits and independent contractors, can be found on the City of Oakland’s Business & Worker Resource web page. The site is updated regularly as more information becomes available, so please check it often. You are encouraged to: 
  · Take the COVID-19 Business Impact Data Survey, which services as the City’s intake pathway to request one-on-one business assistance
 
 

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