I know a lot of you forward this email on to people, which is great. I’d appreciate it if you would encourage the forwardees to click here to sign up to receive the BBR directly. As you know, signing up doesn’t subject them to spam or sales pitches – just all the weekly(ish) musings of a 45-year-old man who in eighth grade was introduced by the principal at a nerd awards ceremony as “Jennifer Eager.”
Here’s some stuff you might like.
Party (at an appropriate distance and in relatively small numbers) like it’s May 15?: Oregon Governor Kate Brown has released what is apparently the final version of a power point presentation laying out the framework for reopening Oregon. Astute readers will recall that she first publicly announced the framework a few weeks ago. The current version has some more detail, but is not at present incorporated into any executive order or other legally binding document that I can find. So let’s break down the power point, shall we?
Basically, a bunch of stuff changes on May 15. On that date, effective statewide, furniture stores, art galleries, jewelry shops and boutiques may open, so long as they follow OSHA and other guidelines. Those businesses were on the no-no list from the original shutdown order. I also call them “stores I only visit under extreme duress or on First Friday if they have wine.” At least they’ll soon open to serve those with more refined taste.
From there, things get a little more complicated. Counties with low case numbers, which describes the vast majority of Oregon counties including Deschutes County, may apply to enter Phase I or the reopening. You might have thought that Phase I is the first phase of the reopening, but it’s kind of like the third or so, given that restrictions have previously been relaxed on hospitals and there’s the statewide reopening of the fancy pants (but still valuable) businesses in the paragraph above. I guess Phase I is the first phase of county-by-county reopening.
The chart below, from the power point, sums things up pretty well. The left hand column is the type of business or activity; the next column over describes the status of that type of business or activity under current law; then, the business or activity after May 15, applicable to all such businesses statewide; and, finally, the status if the business or activity is located in a county that applies for and is deemed worthy of Phase I status.
|Current||New statewide||Phase I – by county|
|Childcare||For essential workers only; cohorts up to 10||Open to all with priority for essential workers; increased cohorts #s to defined|
|Summer school, summer camps and other youth programs||Will be open with physical distancing|
|Outdoor recreation and public spaces||State park day use areas and boat ramps, option for county/federal camping|
|Restaurants and bars||Take-out only||Take-out only||Sit-down with 6 foot distancing required|
|Personal care – salons, barber shops, massage, etc.||Closed||Closed||Physical distancing, appointments, PPE and customer list required|
|Personal care – gyms/ fitness||Closed||Closed||Max. limit; physical distancing & sanitation required|
|Local gatherings||Closed||Closed||TENTATIVE: For local groups only up to 25 (no travel).|
So, restaurants, bars, salons and gyms can open, subject to distancing and other restrictions, on May 15 in those counties that achieve Phase I status by that date, and local gatherings of maybe up to 25 (it appears that number may be adjusted by May 15) are allowed.
One caveat: power points are not generally legally binding, and I suspect we will soon see new executive order(s) issued to codify all this. Businesses should rely on the eventual, legally binding documents once they’re available. If there are significant differences between the final product and what I’ve covered here, I’ll share in a future BBR.
Deschutes County has applied to enter Phase I: Many Oregon counties, including Deschutes and Crook Counties have submitted plans to the state in application to enter Phase I. The Deschutes plan states that the county meets all of the Governor’s prerequisites to open, with the exception of one: the Governor wants 15 contact tracers to track and educate people who may have been exposed to the Coronavirus per 100,000 population. There’s almost 200,000 people in Deschutes County now, so per the Governor’s guidelines we’d need 30 contact tracers. The county’s plan provides that its existing staff of six tracers have proven sufficient and in the event there’s a spike in cases the county will hire more or rely on state resources. The county’s taking a bit of a gamble here, as it is basically hoping the state will be flexible with its guidelines. Hopefully it will, and the county should probably begin ramping up tracing capacity in any event, at least temporarily.
No football ’til October?: The Governor also mentioned that large gatherings such as festivals, concerts and in-person sporting events will probably not be allowed until October at the earliest. Lots of cancellations of big events have already been announced, and it would appear that Duck games in a packed Autzen Stadium won’t happen ’til midseason, if at all. Beaver fans take heart. The restriction would only apply to large gatherings for sporting events, so you should be good.
Incarcerated man with large back tattoo and a love of pot takes interest in Oregon politics: That headline isn’t on its face so strange – there are surely plenty of marijuana-friendly tatted dudes in Oregon prisons who take an interest in politics in one form or another. But this is so much more weird. The incarcerated man in this case is Roger Stone, a former adviser to President Trump who was convicted of obstruction of a congressional investigation and witness tampering, and who’s on house arrest in Florida waiting to get into prison once the Coronavirus risk in the prison is diminished. The tattoo? A large image of Richard Nixon’s face on Stone’s back.
And here’s where Oregon comes in: Stone has endorsed Jason Atkinson in the Republican primary to replace Greg Walden as the representative of the state’s second congressional district. Why? Well, apparently Atkinson for some reason tracked Stone down to ask him for the endorsement. Also, in Stone’s words, “When I find conservative candidates who are pro-cannabis, I will go out of my way to support them.”
We can now add to the many surprising aspects of this alternate reality we’ve slipped into in 2020 that a Republican primary candidate sought and received the endorsement of a convicted felon on the basis of the candidate’s support for federal marijuana legalization.
Screaming Eagles: If you live in Bend and are a good BBR subscriber who immediately opens this email, you might right now be hearing a flyover of Oregon National Guard F-15 Screaming Eagle fighter jets. They’re flying over St. Charles Bend at 11:20 this morning to honor health care workers. Being in close proximity to a flyover by military aircraft is really cool. Fun fact: the F-15 has a 100-0 record in air-to-air combat since its introduction in the early 1970s.
Business Finder: We have a few more businesses who’ve asked to be included in our list of open businesses. I’ve heard from a few business owners who’ve had people tell them they heard about them on BBR, which is really cool. Thank you.
Vacation Rental Property Management
Homage Home Living, Independent Residential Concierge Living
Pacific Northwest Audiology
2205 NW Shevlin Park Rd.
Bend OR 97703
Southside Physical Therapy Inc.
Bend. Physical Therapy.
Have a great weekend!