Weideman Group COVID-19 Update
January 4, 2021

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California COVID-19 Statistics

Unprecedented surge continues. New cases of COVID-19 and hospitalizations in California continue their rise according to the latest data released by state and local health departments. These are the most recent facts released by the Department of Public Health:

  • New Cases 
    • 7-day average of 37,845 new cases
    • 14-day average of 37,753 new cases 
  • Deaths
    • 7-day average of 336
    • 14-day average of 283
  • 21,128 Current COVID-19 Hospitalizations
    • 14-day average of 19,742
  • 4,584 Current COVID-19 ICU Admissions
    • 14-day average of 4,226
    • 1,337 ICU beds available 
  • Positivity Rate
    • 7-day positivity rate of 13.3%
    • 14-day positivity rate of 12.4%
  • Region Status - California is divided into 5 regions for determining the Governor’s mandatory 3 week stay-at-home order. When any given region’s ICU bed capacity falls below 15%, the stay-at-home order is triggered. As of today, 98% of California’s population is under the order, with only the Northern California region demonstrating capacity consistently above 15%. Below are the current ICU capacity numbers for the 5 regions:
    • Northern California: 30% ICU Capacity
    • Greater Sacramento Area: 12.1% ICU Capacity 
    • San Joaquin Valley: 0% ICU Capacity
    • Bay Area: 7.9% ICU Capacity 
    • Southern California: 0% ICU Capacity 
Vaccine Distribution

Vaccine distribution continues in California. 454,306 COVID vaccine doses have been administered in California to date. Individuals that fall into phase 1A are currently receiving vaccinations across the state. In a press conference earlier today, the Governor stated that he is proposing a $300 million allocation for vaccines to include CALVAX, an end-to-end vaccine information technology management system, logistical needs such as dry ice and freezers, and a public education campaign to engage key communities through a culturally competent campaign. The Drafting Guidelines Workgroup and the Community Vaccine Advisory Committee are in the process of drawing up guidelines for phases 1B and 1C of vaccine distribution. Information on the vaccine allocation prioritization for phase 1A can be found here. More information on California’s vaccine efforts can be found here. A breakdown of doses allocated across the state can be found here

 

California

Nationally

Doses Distributed

1,297,000

15,418,500

Doses Administered

454,306

4,563,260

Nationally, 2,533,925 doses have been distributed through the federal partnership with CVS and Walgreens for vaccination in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities. Of those, 365,294 first doses have been administered. 

Newsom Administration

Governor takes action over the holiday. Over the holiday break, Governor Gavin Newsom made several personnel changes and updated the public on state policies related to the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic. Below is a recap of recent actions. 

  • Safe Schools for All - Governor Gavin Newsom released the State Safe Schools for All plan, California’s framework to support schools to continue operating safely in-person and to expand the number of schools safely resuming in-person instruction. The plan is being backed by a proposed $2 billion budget request to assist and incentives school districts to begin safely reopening for in-person learning. 
  • EDD Director - Governor Gavin Newsom announced the appointment of Rita L. Saenz as Director of the Employment Development Department. EDD has been under constant scrutiny because of claims backlog holding up unemployment assistance in the state. Rita served in several prominent positions during Jerry Brown’s previous Governorship in the 1980s and was the Director of the Department of Social Services from 1998-2004. 
  • Project Homekey - Governor Gavin Newsom announced that they have closed escrow on all 94 Homekey projects providing 6,029 housing units for people experiencing homelessness throughout the state. 
  • Pharmacy Partnership - Governor Gavin Newsom announced that California has opted in to the federal COVID-19 Pharmacy Partnership. At no cost to the state or local government, CVS and Walgreens will administer the Pfizer vaccine to residents and staff in long-term care facilities. 
  • Legal Affairs Secretary - Governor Gavin Newsom announced the appointment of Analea Patterson as Legal Affairs Secretary in the Office of the Governor, filling the role previously held by Catherine Lhamon.  
  • Budget – Governor Newsom must constitutionally release his 2021-2022 January budget by January 10th. We expect the budget will be heavily focused on COVID-19 response and will be released this Friday. 
 California Legislature 

Legislature to return on January 11th. The Assembly and Senate were originally scheduled to return to regular business today but leaders of both houses made a joint decision to return to regular business on January 11. Bills in both houses of the Legislature are continuing to be introduced and the Weideman Group team is tracking those introductions for you. 

Federal Government

117th Congress is sworn in to begin the new legislative session. On Sunday, lawmakers took their oath of office to be seated for the new session. Representative Nancy Pelosi was reelected Speaker of the House of Representatives for a 4th term, which she intends to be her last session in that position. The Senate and House of Representatives are planning to meet on Wednesday as a joint session to count and certify the votes of the Electoral College, and officially designate President-elect Joe Biden the winner of the Presidential Election. 

President signs stimulus. President Trump signed the relief package containing a $600 stimulus check to qualifying individuals, after he criticized the amount and asked Congress to send him a bill that contained a $2,000 stimulus check. Last week, the House of Representatives passed amended language for such an increase, however, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did not bring it up for a vote. The President signed the package, avoiding a government shutdown, and checks have begun being distributed to individuals. The President did veto the National Defense Authorization Act, which for decades has passed on a bipartisan basis but Congress voted to override the President’s veto. 

Resources
  • ​California Coronavirus Response website can be found here
  • California Department of Public Health guidance documents can be found here
  • California COVID-19 risk screening and testing can be found here
  • California Local Public Health Authority information can be found here
  • Center for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 updates can be found here
  • Looking for ways to help your community? Visit this site here