Residential waste, recycling, and compost pickup in the hills is suspended on Monday, October 26 due to high winds.

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 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

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ZAB Live Stream: Please visit

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 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 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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General Information
General Information

COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Cover your face to prevent COVID-19 spread

Carry a cloth face covering with you when you leave home. Have it visible at all times, and put it on when others are nearby.

Many people with COVID-19 have no symptoms, but they can still infect others. Wearing a cloth face covering over their nose and mouth helps prevent unknowing carriers from spreading the disease.

When to wear a face covering

Everyone 2 years and older is required to wear a face covering when outside your home by the State of California and City of Berkeley Health Officer order. Wear a face covering when you are:

  • shopping at a store
  • waiting in line to enter a store
  • using or waiting for public transportation
  • in a taxi or rideshare
  • seeking healthcare
  • inside any workplace, either as an employee, customer, or visitor
  • during outdoor dining, at all times other than when you are actively eating or drinking
  • walking outside and you see someone within 30 feet (about the length of a bus)

You will not be allowed to enter a business or use public transportation if you are not wearing a face covering.

When you are walking, running, or biking outside and see someone 30 feet away, put on your face covering. This way your nose and mouth will be covered by the time you get close to them.

When you don't have to cover your face

Face coverings are not required when you are:

  • at home
  • in a car alone or exclusively with members of your household
  • sitting or standing with people you live with (such as picnicking outside) and you are more than 6 feet away from others
  • outside and not within 30 feet of anyone you don't live with

When outside alone or with members of your household, you should still have a face covering with you. It should be visible and readily accessible when you're exercising, like hanging around your neck.

Put it on when you see someone come within 30 feet (about the length of a bus).

Face coverings protect the people around you

Covering your face is about helping others. Wearing a cloth mask does not prevent you from being infected by someone else.

COVID-19 spreads easily between people, primarily through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. Cloth face coverings help contain these droplets, preventing them from traveling in the air and onto other people.

Many people infected with COVID-19 don't have symptoms, but they can still spread the disease. When everyone wears a face covering, we minimize risk of transmission for everyone.

Face coverings are not a substitute for social distancing

Face coverings supplement other COVID-19 precautions. They are not a substitute for other behaviors to slow the spread. You should continue to stay home except for allowed activities, keep 6 feet away from others when out, wash your hands often, cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow, and not leave your home when sick.

Guidelines for face coverings

Face coverings should be comfortable and allow you to breathe normally through your nose. Make sure it fits well - you should avoid touching your face or adjusting your mask once you've put it on.

Your face covering should:

  • fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • be secured with ties or ear loops
  • allow for breathing without restriction
  • be able to be laundered without damage

Make your own face covering

You do not need to buy any special equipment to comply with face covering requirements. Simple, do-it-yourself face coverings are fine. You can improvise using a scarf, bandana, t-shirt, or towel. The CDC does not recommend the use of gaiters or face shields. Their effectiveness is being evaluated and is unknown as of October 2020.

The CDC has created tutorials on how to make a mask at home:

What not to use

  • Masks with valves: Do not use masks that have a one-way valve designed for easier breathing (the valves are often a raised plastic disk about the size of a quarter on the front or side of the mask). These valves allow respiratory droplets out of the mask, which puts people nearby at risk.

  • Medical grade masks: Don't use surgical masks or N-95s - medical grade masks are needed for health care workers and first responders.

Keep face coverings clean

Clean your hands before and after touching your face coverings.

Wash your face coverings frequently. Ideally, wash them after each use and keep them in a dedicated laundry bag or bin.

Follow CDC instructions on washing cloth face coverings by machine or by hand.

Exceptions: some groups are not required to wear face coverings

Medical, safety, and disability exceptions

You do not have to wear a face covering if:

  • you have been advised by a medical professional not to wear a face covering (must have documentation)
  • you have trouble breathing or are not able to take off a face covering without help
  • wearing a face covering would create a safety hazard at work, according to established health and safety guidelines
  • you have a physical disability that prevents you from wearing a face covering

If you are deaf and use facial and mouth movements as part of communication, you can remove your mask while signing.


Children under 2 should not wear face coverings, as this creates risk of suffocation.

Last updated October 5, 2020

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