Coronavirus Bay Area live updates: Benicia city council to consider indoor mask mandate – KGO-TV

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — A surge in coronavirus cases has been reported in the Bay Area and across California as well as the country due in part to the emergence of the highly-contagious delta variant.

The latest number of confirmed cases in the U.S. can be found at the CDC’s 2019 Novel Coronavirus in the U.S. page. (The CDC updates the webpage on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.)

Join anchor Kristen Sze for ABC7’s daily, interactive newscast about the coronavirus outbreak in the Bay Area and around the world. You can check here to stream the show Monday-Friday at 3 p.m.

Here are the latest developments on the respiratory illness in the U.S.:

Aug. 22, 2021

11:50 a.m.
Benicia to consider indoor mask mandate at this week’s city council meeting

The Benicia City Council will consider a resolution this week that would implement an indoor mask mandate in the city due the spread of COVID-19 and the Delta variant. If passed, Benicia would be the first city in Solano County with a mask requirement in indoor, public settings.

Solano County is the only Bay Area county without an indoor mask mandate. In early August, eight counties and the City of Berkeley implemented a mask policy, following the CDC recommendation that even fully vaccinated people wear a mask indoors. If the resolution is passed, people over the age of 12 would be required to wear a face mask in public, indoor settings in Benicia.

The mandate is scheduled to be discussed at the Aug. 24 city council meeting at 6 p.m.

Aug. 20, 2021

1:30p.m.
Marin County to require COVID-19 vaccine verification for first responders next month

Marin County Public Health announced an order today that will require first responders to verify that they are fully vaccinated starting next month. Unvaccinated staff will be required to test weekly for the virus.

This will take effect on September 15 and applies to law enforcement officers, firefighters and emergency medical (EMS) personnel and staff who manage emergency calls at hospitals, jails, nursing and congregate care facilities, the health agency says.

“We’ve seen that outbreaks in high risk settings, when they occur, are often sparked by infected staff or visitors who unknowingly bring the virus into the facility,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer in a press release sent today.

The agency says Marin County has seen an increase in cases and hospitalizations, with over 90 percent of current cases being infected with the Delta variant.

You can get more information about COVID-19 vaccines and to find a Marin County Public Health vaccine clinic here.

11:15a.m.
Chase Center says fans must show proof of full vaccination

Chase Center announced today fans ages 12 and older must provide proof of full vaccination. San Francisco’s indoor proof of vaccination requirement took effect Friday as it was previously issued back on August 12.

The order stated that all indoor events with more than 1,000 attendees, 12 and older, must show proof they are fully vaccinated in order to gain entry to the venue unless there are medical or religious exemptions, but must provided a current negative COVID-19 test 72 hours prior to the game.

The next Chase Center event, Tame Impala, is scheduled for September 15, 2021. The Warriors’ 2021-22 NBA regular season and preseason schedule will be announced in the near future, the organization said.

Click here for more information on the Golden State Warriors 2021-22 season.

You can learn how to access your vaccination card on your mobile device by clicking here.

5:15 a.m.
SF vaccine mandate takes effect today
San Francisco’s new vaccine mandate takes effect today. Proof of vaccination is now required at indoor businesses like restaurants, bars, gyms and museums.

Aug. 19, 2021

2:30 p.m.
Masks recommended at Marin County schools, even outdoors, health officials say

Health and education officials in Marin County are calling on students and families to wear masks at all times while on school campuses, even outdoors. The county says universal masking adds a layer of protection while the Delta variant of COVID-19 continues to spread.

“Looking across the nation as schools reopen it’s clear the Delta variant presents new challenges,” Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County health officer, said in a statement Thursday. “We’ve risen to challenges before by following the guidance and using common sense. Face covering is among the easiest and most effective tools we have.”

6:30 a.m.
Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival canceled in Golden Gate Park
The Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival has been canceled in Golden Gate Park because of COVID concerns. The event will be live streamed on October 1, 2, 3 starting each day at 1 p.m. PT.

5:40 a.m.
SJSU students return for 1st day of fall semester
San Jose State University will welcome back students for the first day of the fall semester today. SJSU will hold an on campus celebration starting at 11 a.m. that includes remarks from University President Mary Papazian and San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo. Students will return to campus after more than 17 months of mostly virtual learning due to the pandemic.

Aug. 18, 2021

10 a.m.
US health officials recommend COVID booster shots as infections soar

U.S. health officials Wednesday announced plans to offer COVID-19 booster shots to all Americans to shore up their protection amid the surging delta variant and signs that the vaccines’ effectiveness is falling.

The plan, as outlined by the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other top authorities, calls for an extra dose eight months after people get their second shot of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. The doses could begin the week of Sept. 20. Get more details here.

9:40 a.m.
LA County requiring face coverings at major outdoor events
People attending major outdoor events in Los Angeles County will be required to wear a mask, regardless of vaccination status, under a new order issued by the county health department. The order says those attending “outdoor mega-events” must wear a face covering at all times except when eating and drinking.

6:10 a.m.
San Jose Unified students return to classrooms
It’s the first day of school for kids in the South Bay. The San Jose Unified School District says teachers and students are required to wear masks regardless of vaccination status.

Aug. 17, 2021

2:15 p.m.
Lafayette Art and Wine Festival canceled due to COVID-19 ‘setback’

The Lafayette Art and Wine festival held annually in downtown Lafayette has been canceled due to the Delta variant and spread of COVID-19, according to the event website.

“As we all know, there has been a significant setback in the public health response to the pandemic, driven by the delta variant and low vaccination rates (not in Lamorinda, but elsewhere),” the event website read.

Next year’s event will be held Sept. 17-18, 2022. For more information, click here.

2 p.m.
San Francisco’s Great Dickens Christmas Fair canceled due to Delta variant

The Great Dickens Christmas Fair held annually at the Cow Palace in San Francisco has been postponed until 2022, organizers announced on the fair website.

Organizers cite the transmissible Delta variant as the reason for canceling this year’s event. The fair will be held virtually for the second year in a row.

11 a.m.
CA test positivity rate under 6%

Today’s California coronavirus data shows our test positivity rate is under 6%. The positivity rate hasn’t been this low since July 28, when it was 5.9%. It jumped to 6.2% on July 29. For reference, the state has been above 5% since July 23.

Here are the latest numbers:
9,748 new cases
4,043,407 total cases
7 new deaths
64,201 total deaths
7 day test positivity rate = 5.8%

7,837 hospitalized patients (up 262)
1,746 icu patients (up 56)

4:30 a.m.
New CA cases 600% higher among unvaccinated
California released new COVID-19 numbers showing the vast majority of new cases are among the unvaccinated. Those cases are 600% higher compared to cases among the vaccinated. The CDC says 78.3% of eligible Californians have now received at least one dose. The California Department of Health says more than 45-million doses have been administered.

Aug. 16, 2021

6:30 p.m.
Vaccinated staffer in Gov. Newsom’s office tests positive for COVID-19

A vaccinated employee in Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office tested positive for COVID-19, a spokesperson confirmed Monday night. The person has not interacted with the governor or staff that “routinely interacts” with Newsom, according to his press office.

3:30 p.m.
San Francisco to reopen mass COVID testing site
The City of San Francisco will open a mass COVID-19 testing site at the South of Market neighborhood due to rising daily cases, Mayor London Breed announced on Monday. The site will open on Aug. 18 on 7th and Brannan Streets with the capacity to administer 500 tests per day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week by appointment only. Drive-thru and walk-up services are available, and test results will be ready within 24 to 48 hours. More info here.

6:40 a.m.
West Contra Costa Unified returns to in-person learning
27,000 students in the West Contra Costa Unified Schools will also be returning to in-person learning today for the first time in a year and a half. That includes students at Michelle Obama Elementary School. They’ll be on the Richmond campus for the first time since the school was re-built and named after the former first lady. Michelle Obama held a virtual grand opening at the start of the 2020-21 school year.

Aug. 15, 2021


3 p.m.
Nearly 22 million fully vaccinated in California

California is distributing more than 76,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine on average each day, according to the latest state data. Nearly 22 million eligible residents are fulyl vaccinated, and another 3.4 million are partially vaccinated as of Sunday, the data shows.

Aug. 14, 2021

12 p.m.
Santa Clara County approves extra vaccine dose for immunocompromised

Transplant recipients, cancer patients and people with immunodeficiencies can receive a third dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine in Santa Clara County as of Saturday. People with diabetes, heart disease or the elderly are not authorized by the FDA to receive a third dose unless they have additional conditions that weakens their immune system “to the same extent as someone who had a solid organ transplant,” says a press release by the County of Santa Clara Public Health Department. Those unsure of if they fall under the eligible category should consult with a medical professional, said the county. Appointments can be scheduled at sccfreevax.org.

9 a.m.
Bay Area counties suspend jail visits

In-person visits at Santa Rita Jail have been suspended. The Alameda County Sheriff’s Office says it’s due to a rise in coronavirus cases. Professional non-contact appointments are still available. San Francisco County Jail has also suspended in-person visits. A jail spokesperson tells ABC7 the visits will resume as soon as it’s safe to do so, but there’s no word on how soon that could be.

Aug. 13, 2021

12:30 p.m.
Contra Costa Co. announces vaccine, weekly test requirement for first responders

Contra Costa Co. health officials announced a new health order requiring first responders to verify they are fully vaccinated or test weekly for the virus.

The order goes into effect Sept. 17 and applies to law enforcement officers, firefighters and emergency medical personnel who work in or may respond to emergency calls at high-risk facilities such as hospitals, jails, nursing and congregate care facilities. It also applies to non-emergency ambulance workers who provide medical transport for such facilities.

10:30 a.m.
CA superintendent discusses vaccines for kids

State Superintendent Tony Thurmond hosted a discussion on the importance of vaccines for kids as schools across the state prepare to open for in-person learning.

7:20 a.m.
Contra Costa Health Services has a new program paying residents $100 each time they convince someone to get fully vaccinated in an effort to boost vaccination rates. The “Helping Hands Referral Program” is open to anyone age 14 or older. The person must not have been previously vaccinated for COVID-19. They must also make an appointment using a unique website you provide to them. You will be paid $100 total as a check or gift card after each person you help gets fully vaccinated. You have to register on the county’s health services website.

Aug. 12, 2021

2 p.m.
SF vaccine mandate will not apply to Oracle Park, Giants says

The San Francisco Giants said the latest announcement from Mayor London Breed on the proof of vaccination requirement to enter many establishments will not apply to Oracle Park because it’s an outdoor stadium.

Chase Center, home to the Golden State Warriors, said on Twitter today it will comply with the city’s guidelines – which requires attendees 12 and older to show proof of vaccination at a venue with more than 1,000 people. The next event at Chase Center is Sept. 15.

1 p.m.
Facebook delays employees’ return to office until 2022

Facebook employees will not be required to return to the office until January 2022, the company announced Thursday. A company spokesperson told ABC7 that COVID-19 case data and the Delta variant are driving its approach to employees’ return to the office. Employees will have “ample” notice before needing to return to the office.

5:35 a.m.
Move-in day for students at Cal State East Bay
Today is move-in day for students at Cal State East Bay in Hayward. This is the first time students will be live on campus since March of 2020. Classes start next week.

CDC COVID-19 Transmission Categories by California County

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CDC COVID-19 Transmission Levels by U.S. County

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VACCINE TRACKER: How California is doing, when you can get a coronavirus vaccine

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