Ventura County improves in case rate, updates guidelines for gatherings and supporting small businesses

Image of COVID-19, Coronavirus. Photo courtesy of CDC.

Image of COVID-19, Coronavirus. Photo courtesy of CDC.

By Karla Vazquez

On Oct. 21, Ventura County held a press conference from The Alley, a dining common area outdoor in Moorpark, CA.

Kelly Long, the Ventura County Board of Supervisors Board Chair, wore red to the press conference as a way to represent Ventura County’s tier status.

“We are in the red tier. I’m wearing red today representing our red, and what does that mean? It means businesses are able to serve inside at a percentage and that we’re able to have playgrounds open, that we’re able to now after 14 days be able to have our kids go to school,” Long explained.

Kelly Long, Board Chair for the Ventura County Board of Supervisors, begins the press conference on Oct. 22, 2020.
Kelly Long, Board Chair for the Ventura County Board of Supervisors, begins the press conference on Oct. 22, 2020 in Moorpark, CA Photo credit: Karla Vazquez

The red tier is the second tier out of the four-tiered color-coded system implemented in California. For Ventura County to move into the orange tier it needs to improve its case rate metric. The case rate metric is the seven day average case rate per 100,000. The county currently has a case rate of 5.1 which is an improvement of the case rate they reported last week.

Rigoberto Vargas, director for the Ventura County Public Health Department, explained the case rate the county needs to reach to transition into the orange tier.

“We did improve from 5.2 to 5.1. Definitely trending the right direction but we do need to reach, actually, 3.9 for two consecutive weeks in order for us to formally move into that next tier,” Vargas said.

As of Oct. 21, 2020, the county reported 80 additional positive new COVID cases. There are almost 14,000 Ventura County residents that have now tested for COVID. Ventura County’s testing volume has helped them in the last couple of weeks to improve the case rate. Case rate is the only current metric that is keeping the county from moving to additional tiers. The testing positivity rate is 2.4%. Vargas urged Ventura County residents to get tested to help minimize and mitigate community transmission.

“It is very important for people to know if they are infected and is very important to detect it early and so that we can work with you if you become infected, so that we can work with you in isolation orders and get you resources in order to stay healthy and recover soon,” Vargas explained.

With the Holiday season approaching, Janice Parvin, mayor of the City of Moorpark talked about an opportunity for Ventura County residents to support small businesses.

Janice Parvin, Mayor of the City of Moorpark, talks about supporting small businesses during the county's press conference on Oct. 21, 2020
Janice Parvin, mayor of the City of Moorpark, talks about supporting small businesses during the county's press conference on Oct. 21, 2020, in Moorpark, CA.

The city will be hosting a trunk or treat event where local businesses will be handing out candy to the kids as they drive through Halloween decorated Arroyo Vista Community Park. It is an opportunity for businesses to safely promote their businesses and interact with the families of Moorpark. Parvin encouraged Ventura County residents to support small businesses.

“Our small businesses provide a special experience to their customers and when you support a small business you support a family and in Moorpark we are family,” Parvin said.

For more information on Ventura County’s efforts to reopen or coronavirus case information please visit venturacountyrecovers.org.