El Dorado to pressure governor to lift travel ban amid Tahoe VHR, hotel owners pleas to reopen
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — El Dorado County and many of its residents and business owners want the governor to move faster on reopening.
During a special meeting on Tuesday, county supervisors received a COVID-19 update from Public Health Officer Dr. Nancy Williams.
There has been a spike in positive cases in the county, especially in the Lake Tahoe region, but Williams said the majority of those cases have been spread within households. There have been 22 new cases reported within the past week.
People in Lake Tahoe have been affected more proportionally than the rest of the county with 41 of the county’s 96 total cases, and it has affected people in the Latinx community the most.
Despite the uptick, Williams said she thinks it’s time for the county to focus on educating people about how to stay safe and stop spreading the virus while moving through the reopening phases.
Williams recommends people wear face coverings in public when social distancing is not possible. While this isn’t a mandate, she did say she would support the state if they did decide to mandate it.
She also said the county has been successful with contact tracing. They’ve been able to go to businesses where someone with the virus might’ve gone and have them deep clean or quarantine employees if necessary.
Many residents and business owners called into the meeting during public comment, begging the county to move faster through the reopening stages, especially people in the South Lake Tahoe lodging industry.
With Nevada casinos reopening this week, hotel and VHR owners say the city is already taking the risk of visitors coming without the reward of having them stay at the facilities.
Nevada casinos and hotels are opening Thursday, June 4.
With the statewide non-essential travel ban still in place, reopening lodging facilities might send mixed messages but the supervisors want to push the governor to lift the travel ban and allow those industries to open.
The board voted to allow Williams to expand her attestation to include any sectors that are included in Phase 3 to open once the state issues guidelines, like it has already done for the lodging industry.
The board also voted to send a letter encouraging the governor to lift the travel ban, issue guidelines faster and give the county a reopening timeline.
The board said they want to focus on guidelines for schools during their next meeting.
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