Everyone is required to stay home, except for essential needs. When out, protect yourself and those around you by wearing a face covering, staying 6 feet away from others, and washing your hands often. Learn more at cityofberkeley.info/covid19. City offices are closed to the public. Some services are available remotely.

The City of Berkeley Health Officer has ordered all residents to shelter at home, leaving only to receive or provide essential services, starting 12:01 am on Tuesday, March 17. See details of the Order, frequently asked questions, and recommendations from Berkeley Public Health at https://www.cityofberkeley.info/coronavirus.

City Council Live Stream: Please visit https://www.cityofberkeley.info/CalendarEventWebcastMain.aspx

ZAB Live Stream: Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx.

The City of Berkeley web site is undergoing scheduled maintenance starting on Friday night, September 13 and ending on Saturday afternoon, September 14. During this time, most web pages should be available, but some resources may become unavailable for short periods of time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 5/9/19, at 7:00pm? Please visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1UAnZ8kU8EWllREyOY7rwQ/. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 2/28/19, from 6:00 to 11:00 PM? Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same date and time.

PG&E is reporting a widespread outage affecting thousands of customers in Berkeley and many City buildings, including the Finance Customer Service Center and the Permit Service Center. Call respective City services for further details, or check the PG&E outage page. Power is expected to return by 12:45pm. Traffic lights that are not working should be treated as a four-way stop sign.

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Press Contact: Matthai Chakko, (510) 981-7008

NEW AND EXPANDED INDOOR ACTIVITIES ALLOWED AS COVID-19 CASES AND TEST POSITIVITY RATES REMAIN STABLE
Indoor dining, worship services, livestreaming, and movie theatres may reopen with limited capacity

Berkeley, California (Thursday, October 22, 2020) - New indoor activities, including restaurants, worship services, livestreaming and movie theaters will be allowed to reopen starting Friday, October 23, with capacity limits and COVID-19 safeguards.

An updated Health Officer Order, which goes into effect at 8am on Friday, October 23, allows the following activities at 25% capacity or a maximum of 100 people, whichever is less:

  • Indoor dining
  • Indoor worship services
  • Indoor movie theatres
  • Indoor family entertainment centers

The Order also expands the capacity limits for some previously re-opened activities:

  • Indoor retail and malls up to 50% capacity
  • Indoor gyms and fitness centers at 25% capacity
  • Indoor wedding and funeral services up to 25% venue capacity or 100 people
  • Outdoor non-contact fitness classes up to 20 students and two instructors

Singing and chanting are still prohibited at weddings, funerals, and in-person worship services because these activities create elevated risk for COVID-19 spread.

Live-streamed or recorded performances without an audience, previously permitted outdoors only, will also now be allowed indoors, with restrictions. In addition, music, film, and television production will be permitted outdoors and indoors, with certain limitations. Live performances with an audience - indoor or outdoor - continue to be prohibited.

All businesses must comply with both industry guidance from State of California and City-specific COVID-19 safety protocols, which are outlined in Appendix A of the Order.

Even as more indoor activities are allowed, any business that can serve people outside should maximize opportunities to do so. We have streamlined permitting processes and expanded the range of allowed outdoor activities on both public and private property. See our outdoor commerce guide for assistance.

Continued progress on key indicators makes re-openings possible

This expansion of allowed activities is possible because of collective actions taken by the people of Berkeley along with many months of tireless work from Berkeley Public Health to expand testing capacity and build up contact tracing and other disease containment infrastructure. These efforts have led to a steady decrease in daily COVID-19 case rates and lower test positivity.

Berkeley and Alameda County moved into the "orange tier" of the State's Blueprint for a Safer Economy on October 13. This framework sets a baseline for the minimum restrictions that must be in place everywhere in California based on countywide metrics.

While the orange tier status gives us the flexibility to permit a greater range of activities, we are gradually expanding what is allowed locally in a phased manner in order to minimize risk for a surge of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. This balanced approach is at the heart of the City's response to COVID-19, a disease for which there is still neither treatment nor vaccine.

Budget your activities to limit overall risk

Everyone should continue to take precautions and limit their overall public activities. Just because an activity is permitted doesn't mean the risk of infection has vanished. Indoor activities continue to pose greater risk of transmission than outdoor ones.

Instead of doing all public activities, budget your risk by prioritizing those that are most important to you and forgoing others. If you go to the movies, cook at home or order takeout instead of going out to eat in the following days. If you dine indoors at a restaurant, consider waiting a bit before getting a haircut. If you're working out at a gym indoors daily, think about getting groceries and other essentials delivered instead of shopping in person.

Everyone's comfort level with risk and exposure will be different, based on personal factors. Consider your own risk level before choosing which activities to participate in. People over 60 or with underlying health conditions remain at greater risk of severe illness.

Assess the risk of any public activity by asking three questions: Where will you go? Who will attend? What will happen? These questions should help you avoid confined spaces, crowds, and close contact with those outside your household.

Everyone has a role in keeping our community safe

Everyone should continue to practice foundational COVID-19 safeguards:

  • Wear a face covering when outside your home
  • Stay six feet apart from people you don't live with
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water - or use hand sanitizer as a last resort
  • Stay home when sick
  • Get a flu shot

"While we have made great strides in containing COVID-19, the virus is still present in our community," said Dr. Lisa B. Hernandez, City of Berkeley Health Officer. "Recent surges in cases and hospitalizations across the country provide a stark reminder that progress is not always permanent. We must all continue to be vigilant about practicing everyday preventive actions that slow the spread of disease."

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