COVID-19

Proclamation of Local Emergency and Shelter In Place Directive

On March 12, 2020, Town Manager and Director of Emergency Services, Laurel Prevetti, issued a Proclamation of Local Emergency in response to the global Coronavirus pandemic and its spread in the Santa Clara County community. On March 17, 2020, the Town Council ratified the Proclamation of Local Emergency (see the enabling Resolution here).  

These are important steps in the Town’s efforts to prepare and coordinate emergency resources for the Los Gatos community.

On March 16, 2020, the Santa Clara County Public Health Department ordered all individuals living in the County to shelter in place with allowances for food shopping, medical care, and other basic needs.  On March 31, 2020, Public Health issued another order superseding and extending the shelter at home requirement through May 3, as well as clarifying and strengthening certain terms of the prior shelter order.  The entire updated order can be viewed here. A short, one page summary of the order can be viewed here.  A more in-depth, eight page executive summary of the order can be viewed here.  As a result, all Town Departments (excluding public safety) are closed through May 3, 2020.

For more information on Public Health guidance and other important information regarding COVID-19, please visit the County Public Health website, which is updated daily and now allows the public to ask questions and receive responses.  A person’s risk for COVID-19 is not related to race, ethnicity, or culture. 

A Message from the Mayor - April 6, 2020

Good morning Los Gatos. As we enter yet another week of Shelter in Place – one that many of us hoped would mark the end of isolation – we are instead confronted with the reality of a relentlessly persistent pandemic. The protective actions being requested of us at this point seem, if anything, more demanding than ever before. All the more reason to remember exactly why, and for whom, we are doing what we are – for our loved ones, for ourselves, for the most vulnerable among us, and most importantly now, for those healthcare professionals who fight for us all by fighting the virus. As they work tirelessly day in and day out, let’s take our hats off to them by putting our masks on. This small gesture can make a big difference. So get out your best bandana, an old ski mask, or a spare piece of fabric you didn’t know you had lying around, and tie it on. By supporting others in this and other ways, we can find the hope and inspiration it will take to continue to do what we can to slow the virus’s spread and save lives.

We can do this Los Gatos. Our town is unique in so many ways, and now we can be unique through our leadership, our creativity in finding ways to help others, and in our resolve to see this through.

Once again, thank you for everything each of you is doing every day to keep us all safe and healthy.

It takes a Town.

Marcia Jensen
Los Gatos Mayor

Information on Updated Public Health Shelter in Place Order - March 31, 2020

On March 31, 2020, Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County Health Officer and Public Health Director announced an updated order to extend the order to shelter in place through May 3, 2020. Additional restrictions were also announced.  These actions were taken to further reduce the number of people with whom all individuals come in contact every day.  The more quickly we reduce the number of contacts each of us has, the more quickly and effectively we can “flatten the curve,” reducing strain on the health care system and saving lives.

 New restrictions include:

  • Use of playgrounds, dog parks, public picnic areas, and similar recreational areas is prohibited. 
  • Use of shared public recreational facilities such as golf courses, tennis and basketball courts, pools, and rock walls is prohibited. These facilities are closed.
  • Sports requiring people to share a ball or other equipment must be limited to people in the same household.
  • Essential businesses must develop a social distancing protocol before April 3, 2020.
  • Most construction—residential and commercial—is prohibited.
  • Essential businesses are expanded to include service providers that enable residential transactions (notaries, title companies, realtors, etc.), funeral homes, cemeteries, moving companies, rental car companies, and rideshare services that specifically enable essential activities.
  • Essential businesses that continue to operate facilities must scale down operations to their essential component only.

All of the new information can be found on the County Public Health website at:  www.sccphd.org/coronavirus.  A short, one page summary of the order can be viewed here.  A more in-depth, eight page executive summary of the order can be viewed here

Town Council Unanimously Votes to Donate Additional Funds to 
Local Organizations Assisting Town Residents with Services Due to COVID-19 

The Town’s existing community grant program includes awards to several human services organizations that provide direct services to Los Gatos residents.  At the April 7, 2020 Town Council meeting, the Council unanimously voted to authorize the Town Manager to amend the existing human services grant agreements with West Valley Community Services, Counseling and Support Services for Youth, Next Door Solutions, and Live Oak Senior Nutrition to donate an additional $10,000 to each organization, for a total of $40,000, to assist Town residents with needed services due to COVID-19 and related Public Health Orders. 

West Valley Community Services provides food assistance, supplies, and rental assistance. Counseling and Support Services for Youth (CASSY) is providing mental health telehealth services to youth. Next Door Solutions is helping those who have experienced domestic violence. Live Oak Senior Nutrition is serving take out meals to the Los Gatos senior community. The donation is being paid with existing funds in the Operating Budget for FY 2019/20 that can be used at the Council’s discretion.

Town Council Unanimously Adopts Urgency Ordinance to Place a Moratorium on Residential Evictions

Pursuant to the Town of Los Gatos Municipal Code, California Government Code, Governor of California, and Santa Clara County Public Health Officer, on March 24, 2020, the Town Council unanimously voted to adopt a temporary moratorium on evictions related to income loss due to COVID-19 mitigation measures in order to ensure that individuals can continue to self-isolate.  The ordinance can be viewed here

Santa Clara County Issues Order to Report Large Inventories of
Personal Protective Equipment and Ventilators

The County of Santa Clara Health Officer, Dr. Sara Cody, issued an order on April 8, 2020 requiring both entities and individuals to report large inventories of personal protective equipment (PPE) and ventilators. Reporting is due by 11:59 p.m. on April 15, 2020 via an online survey. It is a one-time disclosure that will help the County’s Public Health Department understand what supplies currently exist and to plan for a potential hospital surge, protecting the health and safety of frontline medical workers, first responders, and patients.

Although the Order does not require donations, those who would like to are encouraged to do so through the VMC Foundation

For the full details of the order, including a complete list of items and quantities that need to be reported, and to complete the one-time disclosure, visit www.sccphd.org/cv19ppe.

Shelter in Place FAQs from Santa Clara County Public Health

Santa Clara County Public Health has provided a comprehensive COVID-19 FAQ document, available in multiple languages, providing detailed guidance on the Order to Shelter at Home.  

It will continue to be updated as guidance evolves.  You can access it here.

Help Keep Parks and Trails Open

At this time, Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District preserve access for the Jones and Flume Trail (which run through St Joseph’s Hill and Novitiate Park in Los Gatos), is for hiking and walking only, Please do not access the Midpen portion of the trail with bikes or horses. Midpen asks for your cooperation, as at this time they do not have the resources to post this as a closure. 

You can help keep Los Gatos parks and trails open by following these simple guidelines: 

  • Stay close to home and avoid crowded areas. 
  • Share the trail and yield to others to maintain a safe distance. 
  • Choose less frequented parks and trails. 
  • Do not park in a crowded parking lot or use a crowded trail. 
  • Hike single file to maximize distance when passing others.
  • Leave no trace: pack out what you pack in. 
  • Look for nearby nature to enjoy, look for the hidden nature in your own neighborhood. 
  • Do not hold social gatherings (do not mix with other households) at parks or anywhere.

Parks Social Distance

Town Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

One employee who works in Town Hall  tested positive for COVID-19.  The individual was last at work on March 16 and has been sheltering in place since the Public Health Order went into effect.  The employee did not have symptoms while in the office, reducing, though not eliminating, the probability of any spread, and is doing well.  In an abundance of caution, employees who work in the vicinity of the diagnosed employee are self-quarantining and have been advised to contact their physician if any symptoms appear.  Due to the many different services the Town continued to provide to the public during that time, we are sharing this information so community members may also take the necessary precautions and communicate with their doctors if symptoms occur.

Beginning in late January, the Town has proactively engaged in COVID-19 prevention by implementing best health practices.  These include social distancing, enhanced cleaning and disinfection of Town Hall, and other measures.  The health of all Town employees and the public remains a priority for the Town of Los Gatos.