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Coronavirus Information

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shortcut to this webpage is www.cityofsantamaria.org/coronavirus

Please check this webpage often for updates and share this link with your friends and neighbors so everyone has access to timely, accurate information. City of Santa Maria employees are currently working at home or from City offices - to maintain all essential city services. To keep our community safe, we also need your help. Follow the guidance from public health officials, remain calm and look out for each other. Stay home as much as possible and maintain social distancing.

For the latest City information, visit the City's Twitter page and News Releases.

Quick Links:

Latest News
Reopening Plan
Essential Services
Business Resources
Paying Bills
Evictions (* new: two videos of recorded Tenant-Landlord webinars)
City Services
Mayor's Message to the community
Business Resources

Businesses may reopen only while adhering to social distancing protocols provided by the Governor and the Health Officer and after completing the County's attestation process. Business owners can find resources, information, and the process to complete the attestation at https://recoverysbc.org/.

The full Health Officer Order can be found here. For more information about COVID-19 and the local response, visit https://publichealthsbc.org/. Community members may also call the Santa Barbara County Call Center at (833) 688-5551.

Emergency face covering directive took effect at 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, May 26 per County Health Order.

wearfacemasks

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reopening Plan

As of May 21st, more Santa Maria businesses can resume operations now that the County has moved into the latter phase of Stage 2 reopening during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Everyone is encouraged to continue physical distancing and hygiene guidelines so we can move toward further reopening.

Santa Maria businesses authorized to reopen during this health emergency will receive assistance and temporarily allowed modifications from the City of Santa Maria’s Community Development Department. Local Emergency Order for Permitted Modification to Business Operations.

CommDev business allowances 

The types of businesses allowed to reopen in this latter phase of Stage 2 include dine-in restaurants (with modifications), schools and child care, retail stores and shopping malls, and some offices. Higher risk businesses, such as hair and nail salons, gyms, churches and hotels for non-essential stays, are identified to reopen in Stage 3, but not before Governor Newsom declares eligible counties can move into Stage 3.

Stage 1: Safety & Preparedness
Stage 2: Lower Risk Workplaces
Stage 3: Higher Risk Workplaces
Stage 4: End of Stay-at-Home Order

“Getting people back to work is an exciting step, after so many businesses were forced to close for about nine weeks,” Mayor Alice Patino said. “But the pandemic is not over. Everyone must continue efforts including washing hands, sanitizing surfaces, wearing masks, and social distancing.”

The City and the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce are assisting local businesses with the process of safely and successfully reopening. The Chamber offers numerous resources online. Mayor Patino and City Manager Jason Stilwell have so far participated in dozens of discussions with State, County, and local business leaders. The City also is working toward safely reopening its facilities, some with modifications, to the public. The City’s Utilities Department reminds building owners and operators that all facilities that have been dormant should have their plumbing properly flushed to bring fresh water into the system. 

Before any business can reopen, it is required to review State guidance and local guidance, complete a COVID-19 Prevention Plan, and self-certify that it can put into place specific health care, sanitation, and spacing rules to keep customers and workers safe during the ongoing pandemic. Read the County Health Officer Order posted online.

The RISE Guide, or Reopening In Safe Environment, is available for public review and feedback at ReadySBC.org under "COVID-19: RecoverySBC."

Logistical support guidelines for reopening businesses are available on the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce website, at www.santamaria.com/COVID19-Recovery.

 

Essential Services

Updates for selected businesses including food facilities - County Health Officer Order of April 5, 2020
Actualizacion para Negocios Selectos Incluyendo Establicimientos de Alimentos (Spanish version)

Essential services are to remain open such as:
Gas stations
Pharmacies
Food: Grocery stores, farmers markets, food banks, convenience stores, take-out and delivery restaurants
Banks
Laundromats/laundry services

TIPS WHEN SHOPPING
We are thankful for all of the dedicated grocery workers who are working extra hours, away from their families to ensure that our grocery stores are stocked. Stores remains open. Wear a mask the store. Practice social distancing outside and inside the store. Buy only what you need. Be aware of your store's special hours or procedures. Learn more at https://enoughforallca.com/

Santa Maria local grocery stores with special hours.

Business Resources

The City of Santa Maria is committed to keeping the business community informed. The City working closely with its partner, the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce. Here are some resources:

Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce webpage: COVID-19 Resources for Businesses

Santa Barbara County Workforce COVID-19 Business Resource Guide

City's support for local hotels (deferring TOT payments) news release and forms for hotels


Restaurant map: The City is making it easier for residents to support local restaurants with a new website they can access by phone or any device. The resource maps the local eateries still open for business during the COVID-19 emergency.

SBA Disaster Loan Process

Santa Barbara Foundation COVID-19 Response Effort for Santa Barbara County

Workplace Health hygiene

Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office (price gouging complaints)

Paying Bills

Water/trash bill
Or, call (805) 925-0951 extension 2217 (English) or 2218 (Spanish)
Or, utility payment drop box at City Hall doors, or drop box in the lower level of the Civic Center parking structure
Unable to pay your water, sewer and trash bill ? The City is waiving delinquent utility billing fees that occur because of the impacts of COVID-19, is not turning off water for non-payment, and is providing payment arrangements.

Mixteco speakers may click here to hear audio instructions how to pay their City utility bill
Pueden hacer clic aquí para escuchar instrucciones de audio en Mixteco sobre cómo pagar su factura de servicios públicos de la ciudad.

Alarm program bill
Customers with payments or questions about business licenses or utility bills are encouraged to first call (805) 925-0951

Unable to pay your electricity or natural gas bill? PG&E will not turn off your service. PG&E also offers payment plan options. Customer service: (800) 743-5000.

Southern California Gas (SoCalGas) also will not turn off service due to nonpayment. Customer service: (877) 238-0092.

Unable to pay rent? On March 18, 2020, pursuant to authority given to local jurisdictions by Governor Newsom, the City of Santa Maria adopted a temporary moratorium, evictions of residential and commercial tenants in the City for non-payment of rent related to COVID-19 financial hardships. Here is the news releases about that temporary moratorium. On March 27, 2020,  California Governor Newsom extended similar protections to tenants statewide by issuing Order N-37-20  suspending evictions by landlords  for failure to pay  rent due to COVID-19 impacts, through May 31, 2020.

VIDEOS: Tenant-Landlord webinar of May 8th English, and Tenant-Landlord webinar of May 8th in Spanish.

 

More information is available here: https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/03/19/governor-gavin-newsom-issues-stay-at-home-order/

Coronavirus rumor control from FEMA

City Services

To protect the safety and wellbeing of the community and its employees, the City of Santa Maria is taking steps to continue providing services to the public. The City declared a local emergency on Wednesday night, March 18, 2020. This action is another tool to get resources for the community. No specific actions for residents is directed. City offices are staffed and continue to operate but public counters are closed to limit interaction and ensure social distancing.

Effective 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, May 26th, passengers aboard SMAT are required to wear face masks/coverings.

 Post Covid Flushing  Post Covid Flushing

 

COVID-19 Water Supply Update
 click image to enlarge

Mayor's Messages:

VIDEOS
Mayor Alice Patino encourages everyone to follow these health practices...
La Alcaldesa Alice Patino alienta a todos a seguir estas practicas….

Mayor's Letter-to-the-Editor of April 7, 2020

Mayor Patino issued a statement assuring the community that the City is committed to taking all possible steps to ensure the community's health and safety. In Spanish (Declaración para la comunidad de parte de la Alcaldesa Alice Patino)

30-second video message from the five Mayors in northern Santa Barbara County:

 

City Services

 

Many City services and instructions are available online, allowing customers to pay a bill, find phone numbers to contact staff, or submit requests, forms, applications, questions, and comments via email. Before making a trip, please check the City’s website, www.cityofsantamaria.org and review the list of services below to see if you can save a trip to City facilities and limit interaction.

The Police Department continues to provide services. Its lobby counter is closed, however, the Records Bureau may be contacted at pdrecords@cityofsantamaria.org or (805) 928-3781 ext. 2590. Also, to limit unnecessary person-to-person contact, officers are handling many non-emergency calls for service by phone. Dispatchers are screening all callers and asking them if they have a fever or other health symptoms.

The Fire Department continues to provide services. Firefighters are showing up in a gown, face mask, and protective gloves. This is for their protection as well as yours, to reduce exposure and minimize the spread of the virus.

The public counter is currently closed. General questions may be submitted via phone or e-mail. In person transactions are conducted on an as required basis by appointment only.

Fire Administration: (805) 925-0951 ext. 2255  fire@cityofsantamaria.org

Fire Prevention: (805) 925-0951 ext. 8533 fireprevention@cityofsantamaria.org

Fire Inspections: (805) 925-0951 ext. 2502

 Community Development Department: For building and planning customers while the public counter is closed:

  • General customer service questions are being handled over the phone or via email.
  • Permit submittals are being received by way of a drop-off bin. Plan check fees can be collected over the phone (805) 925-0951 extension 2241 by credit card, with exception to high amounts for which a check remains appropriate.
  • Work related to permit issuance can be done with minimal contact with a customer. Permits can be issued to the customer in one exchange, by appointment, after all other work has been performed and fees have been collected.
  • Business licenses can be submitted via email, and the City will collect fees by phone.
  • For building inspections, please call (805) 925-0951 extension 2510.  Please leave your building permit number, job address, inspection type, a preference of either AM or PM and a reliable contact phone number.  Your inspector will contact you between 7:00 a.m. and 8 a.m. on the day of inspection to coordinate.  Inspection request must be received a minimum of one business day prior by 4:00 p.m.

Department of Public Works:

  • General customer service questions are being handled over the phone (805) 925-0951 extension 2225 or via email.  Email links are available on the City website under Public Works Services.
  • Encroachment permits can be submitted via email.  The application and email link is located on the City Website under Public Works Services.  The City will collect fees by phone.
  • Encroachment permit inspections will continue as normal.  Please contact the inspector listed on the permit to schedule an appointment.

The City Attorney’s Office has closed its public counter and continues to answer phone calls at (805) 925-0951 extension 2310. The Code Enforcement Division can be reached at extension 2420.

The Public Library and all four branches are closed, so try the Sidewalk Pickup Program that started Monday, June 29. Programs are postponed. Patrons are encouraged to take advantage of free online Library services and e-materials such as e-books, audio books, etc. at www.cityofsantamaria.org/library.

Recreation and Parks facilities are closed. Programs are postponed. Watch our new "how to" videos, such as music lessons, working out, make origami, learn basic soccer skills, and more! Staying active is vital to mental and physical wellbeing. Read this post.

  • The public is encouraged to watch City meetings online (live web streaming) or cablecast on Comcast Channel 23.
  • Employees are being continually educated and are advised to utilize social distancing, clean their work areas, and use personal protective equipment.
  • City offices remain open by phone at (805) 925-0951.

The Utilities Department is closed. This includes the public counters at the Santa Maria Regional Landfill (2065 East Main Street) and at the Wastewater Treatment Plant (601 South Black Road). Customers are encouraged to conduct their City business by phone at (805) 925-0951 extension 7270 or by email to utilities-green@cityofsantamaria.org for a response as soon as possible. 

The Santa Maria Regional Landfill remains open to the public at this time. The hours are 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. daily. On the weekends, landfill inquiries may be directed to (805) 925-0951 extension 7253. 

The Septage Receiving Station at the Wastewater Treatment Plant remains open to the public at this time. The hours are 7:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Friday.

To stay updated on any additional news regarding City operations of facilities, customers are encouraged to use the City website at www.cityofsantamaria.org and stay updated about City news on Twitter at https://twitter.com/City_SantaMaria

Links to other institutions in Santa Maria and their COVID-19 responses:

 Foodbank: https://foodbanksbc.org/
Qualifying seniors can call 2-1-1 to request home food deliveries
 Marian Medical Center:
https://www.dignityhealth.org/central-coast/locations/marianregional/coronavirus
 Santa Maria-Bonita School District: http://www.smbsd.org/
 Santa Maria Veterans Administration Clinic: https://www.losangeles.va.gov/LOSANGELES/emergency/index.asp
 Southern California Gas Co (SoCalGas) bill payment options and services

WHERE IS MY IRS PAYMENT?

Across the country, some stimulus payments have already been directly deposited into people’s bank accounts — be sure to check your account to see if yours is there, as this process will continue over the coming weeks. The payment information from your 2018 or 2019 tax returns is used to distribute this stimulus payment to you. If you received your tax refund electronically in those years, you will receive this payment electronically to your most recent bank account on file.

If the IRS does not have direct deposit information on file for you for tax years 2018 or 2019, this payment will come to you by mail to the last address you provided the IRS. These paper checks will start being issued in early May—starting with individuals with the lowest incomes—at a rate of about 5 million checks per week. This process could take up to 20 weeks.

https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment

 

Local Health Emergency is in place Countywide. Social distancing and personal hygiene are very important.

For the latest local information on COVID-19, please visit the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department portal https://publichealthsbc.org/.

Steps to protect yourself from all infectious diseases

Updated information: The County Public Health Department Or, call the PHD information line at (833) 688-5551.