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Covid-19 update: Counties ease up on limited outdoor activities, SF provides 29 RVs for homeless, state expands Farm to Table program

Public health officers of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo and Santa Clara counties as well as the city of Berkeley extended shelter orders through May 31, but with the extension came some easing of restrictions on outdoor activities and businesses beginning Monday.

Outdoor businesses and service providers like nurseries, flea markets, landscapers and gardeners will be able resume next week and all construction projects will be able to resume as long as safety protocols outlined in the new public health order are followed.

Bars, restaurants and cafes with outdoor seating will not be allowed to open.

Nik Wojcik/SFBay Skate parks are among the limited outdoor recreation areas allowed to open under revised Covid-19 shelter orders that have been extended through May 2020 in six Bay Area counties and the city of Berkeley. Pictured here: Skate park in Concord, Calif.

The public will be able to head to outdoor recreational areas like skate parks, golf courses (subject to change in state order) and athletic fields that don’t rely on shared equipment.

Additionally, the new order allows for limited childcare and other recreational facilities like summer camps in groups of 12 or less children. This is also subject to the state’s order and it’s further stressed that childcare should be used only if parents are essential workers.

Bay Area health officials ask the public to continue practicing physical distancing and wearing face coverings when in essential businesses. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday at his press briefing that by and large the new Bay Area orders are “very consistent” with the state’s guidelines, but he plans to circle back with counties on the discussion of childcare.


  • Confirmed Cases: 1,038,451
  • Deaths: 60,876

Source: John Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center Covid-19 tracking tool as of Wednesday at 6:49 p.m.

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  • Confirmed Cases: 48,328
  • Deaths: 1,939

Source: John Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center Covid-19 tracking tool as of Wednesday at 6:49 p.m.

To help with the growing demand at food banks, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced an expansion of the Farm to Family program that will supply excess produce to food banks.

Noting that farmers and ranchers are experiencing a 50 percent decrease in demand and have excess produce and perishable items that can be distributed to food banks statewide, Newsom said:

“We want to address that mismatch. We want to address that supply and demand.”

U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Nicole Leidholm Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday, April 29, 2020 an expansion of the state’s Farm to Family program aimed at connecting struggling farmers and ranchers with the growing number of people seeking assistance at food banks during the Covid-19 crisis.

The program has so far partnered with 128 farmers and ranchers, providing food to 41 food banks in 58 counties.

The governor said:

“The goal of this announcement is to provide 21 million pounds of fresh food and fresh produce on a monthly basis.”

Newsom said the state has raised $3.6 million of the $15 million goal estimated to operate the program.

The governor also announced that CalFresh recipients will receive the maximum benefits for the month of May, thanks in part to a waver the state received from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Additionally, the governor announced that Electronic Benefits Transfer card use is being extended to online purchases. Participants can use EBT cards now to make purchases on and

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Jesse Garnier/ SFBay Bay Area Covid-19 dashboard as of Wednesday, April 29, 2020.

Alameda County

  • Confirmed Cases: 1,568
  • Deaths: 57

Source: The Alameda County Public Health Department with data reported through Tuesday and including Berkeley.

Alameda County courts are expanding services in response to the extended shelter-in-place orders. In a press release issued Wednesday, officials said:

“Beginning Monday, May 4, 2020, the Court will hear additional, specified motions in civil cases.”

The hearings are reserved for cases that were assigned trial dates between March 17 and May 4 prior to the March 17 shelter order. The hearings will be conducted remotely.

Beyond expanding hearing access. the court again added to the list of acceptable documents that can be submitted by drop box, mail or fax.

Contra Costa County

  • Confirmed Cases: 862
  • Deaths: 24

Source: Contra Costa Health Services as of Wednesday at 11:30 a.m.

Contra Costa County has seen 20 or more new Covid-19 cases on each of the last past two days, which is an infection spike as compared to the 10 days prior. The county reported 23 new cases Wednesday bringing the county’s confirmed case total to 862.

The county has so far conducted 12,784 tests and reports that as of Tuesday, 24 Covid-19 patients were hospitalized.

Marin County

  • Confirmed Cases: 235
  • Deaths: 13

Source: Marin Health and Human Services as of Wednesday.

The Marin County Board of Supervisors passed an amended resolution that will extend protections to tenants from being evicted by landlords because of loss of income due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Supervisors joined representatives from five other Bay Area counties and the city of Berkeley to extend the shelter resolution through May.

The county is also extending its order to prohibit motorized access parks, campgrounds and open space through May 31.

Napa County

  • Confirmed Cases: 67
  • Deaths: 2

Source: Department of Health and Human Services as of Wednesday.

San Francisco

  • Confirmed Cases: 1,490
  • Deaths: 23

Source: San Francisco Department of Public Health with data through Monday.

San Francisco’s Human Services Agency Executive Director Trent Rhorer said Wednesday at a press conference that The City will temporarily use Pier 94 to park recreational vehicles and trailers for use by homeless residents in District 10.

Rhorer said The City will provide 29 RVs and 91 trailers for homeless people in the district who need to shelter-in-place in place during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Rhorer said:

“Following the assessment of several public lands, The City selected this location for the RV and trailer deployment because it provides land management utilities and rent relief through a partner city agency.”

Aaron Levy-Wolins/SFBay Officials in San Francisco, Calif., announced Wednesday, April 29, 2020 that they will provide 29 RVs and trailers to shelter prioritized homeless individuals during the Covid-19 outbreak.

The Port Commission approved the plan in a 5-0 vote on Tuesday night.

Homeless people aged 60 and older with underlying health conditions will be given priority.

Rhorer said:

“By prioritizing people experiencing homelessness, the shelter site will not only help prevent vulnerable people from getting infected, but also we’ll help reduce the spread of coronavirus through the community.”

The Human Services Agency, the Department of Public Health and the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing will manage the temporary shelter site.

Medical and supportive care, security monitoring, meals and animal care will be available at the facility, Rhorer said.

City officials expect to begin admitting RV and trailer guests next week.

San Mateo County

  • Confirmed Cases: 1,136
  • Deaths: 48

Source: San Mateo County Health Department with data reported through Tuesday.

The county’s Board of Supervisors Tuesday passed an emergency moratorium that prohibits landlords from increasing rent on tenants amid the Covid-19.

The moratorium lasts until May 31, which is when the shelter-in-place order is set to expire.

Santa Clara County

  • Confirmed Cases: 2,134
  • Deaths: 107

Source: Santa Clara County Public Health Department as of Wednesday.

Solano County

  • Confirmed Cases: 254 
  • Deaths: 5

Source: Solano Public Health as of Friday at 4:30 p.m.

Sonoma County

  • Confirmed Cases: 228
  • Deaths: 2

Source: County of Sonoma as of Tuesday at 8:40 p.m.

The county has modified its park closure order and will now allow residents to walk or bike to nearby parks but not drive. The order went into effect Wednesday.

Once at the park, residents can participate in activities like walking, biking, jogging, hiking and fishing.

Park parking lots, restrooms, playgrounds, campgrounds and picnic areas will remain closed to the public.

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