Click here for COVID-19 Video Page
Click here for the March 31 stay at home order update
Click here for the March 17 stay at home order

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

To further combat the spread of COVID-19, Ventura County public Health Officer Dr. Robert Levin has issued a “Stay Well at Home” emergency order — ordering all residents of the County of Ventura to stay inside their residences, and immediately limit all movement outside of their homes beyond what is absolutely necessary to take care of essential needs.

The order is effective March 20, 2020, at 11:59 pm through April 20, 2020, 11:59 pm.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Residents of the County of Ventura are required to stay inside their homes unless they are engaged in certain “essential activities.” On those occasions when you are out of your home for necessary tasks, stay at least six feet away from others.

YOU CAN … 

  • Go to the grocery store
  • Go to the pharmacy to pick up medications and other healthcare necessities
  • Go to medical appointments (check with your doctor or provider first)
  • Go to a restaurant for take-out, delivery or drive-thru
  • Care or support a friend or family member 
  • Walk your pets and take them to the veterinarian if necessary
  • Help someone to get necessary supplies

YOU SHOULD NOT … 

  • Go to work unless you are providing essential services as defined by this Order
  • Visit friends and family if there is no urgent need
  • Maintain less than 6 feet of distance from others when you go out, as possible
  • Travel to or from a job outside the County, unless to perform essential activities
  • Travel to or from a vacation home outside the County
  • Visit loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facility, or other residential care facility

 

City of Ojai’s April 3 Update Regarding Coronavirus From City Manager James Vega and Police Chief Jose Rivera

 

A Video Version of this update is available at: https://youtu.be/XchiE2S1n9A

 

The City Council and staff at the City of Ojai and the Ojai Police Station are focused on responding to critical needs related to the Coronavirus. We wanted to take this time to tell you about some of the latest news, and actions here in Ojai related to this issue.

 

On March 31, the Public Health Officer for the County of Ventura issued an extended and updated “Stay Well at Home Order.” A copy of the order will be posted on our website. The order extends the expiration date to April 19, 2020.

 

There are some important items for City and Valley residents:

 

First, the order requires more specific procedures for take-out restaurants. It requires that all food be in a suitable container. For example, it notes that ice cream cones are not allowed, but ice cream scoops in a covered container are allowed. It also requires that food be consumed away from premises, and that persons waiting in line, whether within a restaurant or outside of a restaurant, must maintain a distance of six feet from others.

 

The notice also requires that essential businesses now limit their activities to essential goods and services. This means that the non-essential activities of a store shall stop. This is typically seen with big box stores, where they remained completely open and sold both essential and non-essential items.

 

The order also orders all public and private campgrounds and RV parks to close, except for persons who certify that their RV is their primary residence. Please see the full order at Ojaicity.org.

 

The coronavirus and these public health orders are requiring us to reconsider several activities within the City of Ojai. Two activities that we will be modifying to increase social and physical distancing this week include the Farmer’s Market and the Hiking Trails.

 

Regarding the Farmer’s Market, you may have heard that the City was working with the Farmer’s Market Management to put some restrictions in place that require more social distancing, and to avoid crowds. The City has been working with the Farmer’s Market Management throughout the week. Although we worked out some issues, as you may have read in the Ojai Valley News this morning, ultimately, last night we determined that there were still crowded areas that could not be managed at the current location.

We attempted to move the Farmer’s Market to a larger location where the booths can be spread out, but both the City and the Farmer’s Market Management felt that more time would be needed to resolve these issues. We will continue to work with the Farmer’s Market to put a plan in place and seek an alternative location that addresses any social distancing issues, but at this time, the Farmer’s Market is closed.

 

Regarding the trails, we have been closely monitoring the hiking trails over the last couple of weeks. We did notice an uptick in traffic on North Signal Street over the last two weekends, and had concerns that the parking areas would be congested and lead to a lack of social distancing. Beginning today, to address this issue, we will be closing North Signal Street, and only allowing local traffic, on the weekends. We will place signage on the streets, and we’re also using smartphone applications to indicate the road closure. We expect that this should reduce the number of people driving out and concentrating in one area.

 

We do not make these decisions lightly. We know that these decisions have a real impact on residents and businesses. However, the health and safety of our community is our priority. We are in a critical period of the fight against COVID-19. By acting now, we are fighting the spread, and these sacrifices could ultimately save lives. Please continue to stay home, wash your hands, and practice social and physical distancing when performing essential tasks. We are currently working on some additional resources, such as COVID safe construction guidelines. Please continue to check ojaicity.org or vcemergency.com for the latest information and updates.

Ventura County Public Health Officer changes position on face masks

Ventura, CA – Ventura County Public Health Officer changes position on face masks, no longer advising against wearing them in public. Instead, he supports those residents who wish to cover their nose and mouth when leaving home for essential travel to doctor appointments, grocery shopping or pharmacy visits. The face coverings should not be hospital grade at this time because there is a shortage and our health professionals need them. Masks should be homemade and cover the nose and mouth. There are numerous sites online which demonstrate or give patterns for how to make fabric masks. The Camarillo Sewing Brigade provides video instruction at the following link. Additional instruction at the following link. Fabric masks can be washed and used again. Click here for the press release

City of Ojai COVID Update March 27, 2020

 

As we all work together to “flatten the curve,” the City is focusing on doing what it can to help encourage social distancing. As we near the weekend, and people are eager to get out of the house, we wanted to provide an update on some recent measures we’ve implemented, as well as some things you should be aware of.
The latest statistics, available on VCEmergency.com, show approximately 61 cases of coronavirus in the County, with 2 of in Ojai. We’re hopeful that all of your efforts may be helping to flatten the curve. However, we still need to be cautious, as the next couple of weeks will likely be critical in preventing the spread.
With the implementation of Ventura County’s “Stay Well at Home” order, the City of Ojai has made a difficult decision to close the Skate Park, playgrounds, and sports courts to encourage social distancing as much as possible. We’re hopeful that taking these matters seriously now will help in the long run.
The trails remain open, but the City will be placing reminders asking visitors to practice social distancing. We’ve all seen videos and pictures of crowded trails and beaches in other areas. Please avoid crowds and keep these precautions in mind:
  • Practice social distance, and maintain a distance of 6 feet from others.
  •  Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  •  Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces

The Farmer’s Market is also scheduled to remain open, as it provides an essential service by providing healthy, nutritious food. We’ll be placing signage at the market reminding everyone to follow the same measures. We’ve also worked closely with the Farmer’s Market to put some additional precautions in place. If you attend, please keep safe and follow the precautions.

You can get more information on these and other measures by visiting Ojaicity.org. We’ve updated our resources page with more information on services available to residents, businesses, and others.
Lastly, we want to remind everyone that many restaurants and essential businesses are still open and providing important services, takeout or delivery food. Our local restaurants are owned and staffed by neighbors and friends. If you can, please visit and support each other, while practicing social distancing.
Stay healthy and safe!

Trolley Service – COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Preparedness and Schedule Change

Beginning Wednesday, March 25:  On weekdays, only Route A with extended service to 7:30pm will continue.  Route B is temporarily discontinued.  Weekend service will not change. 

 

This provides 1-hour frequency trolleys instead of the normal ½ hour trolley frefrequency.  This change is posted at trolley stops and within trolleys.

 

We are following the recommendations of health expert organizations, including the Ventura County Public Health Department and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and are continuing to monitor the issue very closely.  We have taken the following actions on the trolleys:

·         Additional cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as grab bars, farebox, and bus operator compartment with disinfectant throughout the day.

·         Reducing and spacing available seats to provide social distancing.

·         Placed visual alerts on trolleys to help trolley riders and drivers reduce the risk of transmission in accordance with CDC recommendations.

 

Effective March 18, 2020, City services will be exclusively available via email and phone communications. Social distancing will be practiced, meaning in-person service is suspended.

Staff will be onsite and ready to help. Please call or email to speak to the appropriate person:

Ojai Police Station: The Ojai Police Station remains open, please call (805) 646-1414 (Non-Emergency) or 911 for an emergency.

Public Meetings: Non-essential public meetings have been postponed or cancelled to prevent gatherings.

Planning Permits, Building Permits, and Business Licenses: To make arrangements for these services, please email Shari Herbruck at herbruck@ojaicity.org or call (805) 646-5581 ext. 112. For Business Licenses and Finance Services, please email Kristy Rivera at rivera@ojaicity.org or call (805) 646-5581 ext. 100.

Code Compliance: In-person code enforcement interactions with the public will be limited as much as possible. However, Code Enforcement is onsite and prepared to respond to needs.

Plan Review: Plans currently in for plan review will continue to be processed. A bin for plans has been placed in front of City Hall and will be checked on a regular basis. Staff will notify applicants when plans are ready for pick up. Please make sure to pick up plans promptly to make room for other outgoing plans. Please label your plans clearly with your name, phone number, address, and email address and make sure the bin remains closed. Applications for Planning and Building permits can be found at http://ojaicity.org/document-center/ . Forms should be filled out completely and emailed to herbruck@ojaicity.org . As with all new applications, the applicant should contact the Community Development Department for instructions, additional requirements, and fee amounts.

Inspections: All inspection requests will continue to be received either by phone or email. Inspections will be provided, as normal, with the following exceptions: inspections inside occupied residences will be limited to those essential for living and safety. Photos and video messaging may be considered for occupied interior inspections, for rudimentary work, when approved in advance and scheduled with the Building Inspector.

Job Site Considerations: All workers, and any others visiting worksites, need to take all safety precautions with respect to COVID-19. Among other things, the CDC has recommended against large gatherings, and respecting the recommended social distancing of 6 feet from other workers, where possible.

Public Works and Engineering Permits: To make arrangements for these services please email Andrea Mackey at amackey@ojaicity.org or call (805) 646-5581 ext. 209.

Park Rentals and Recreation Programs: The recreation center is closed and all programs have been postponed or canceled. For more information, please email Renee Peace at peace@ojaicity.org or call (805) 646-5581 ext. 390.

Payment of Permit and License Fees: To make arrangements for payments to the City, please contact Kristy Rivera at (805) 646-5581 ext. 100.