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This is the 65th COVID-19 update from San Jose Downtown Association, dating back to March 12, 2020. They are usually sent on Thursdays.
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YELLOW TIER! 

State’s framework for the Yellow Tier, the County’s Risk Reduction Order and Tuesday’s press release.

Dear members:

We have seen increasing momentum in the battle to fight Covid.  Now, we’re working within the least restrictive Yellow Tier.  With plenty of supply, we’re stepping up efforts to get everyone vaccinated.  We’re still wearing masks -- at least until June 15.  And, we’re applying for grants to receive all the funds we can to revive our businesses and get lights back on, employees rehired and customers served.  Some of the burden from the past 15 months is lifting; hopefully translating into enjoying life a little bit more.  

In Today's Message
Farmers' Market Open Every Friday

We've got cherries this week.

Return to the Downtown Farmers' Market each Friday at its new location in SoFA on South First Street between San Salvador and William streets. The Downtown San Jose Farmers' Market, presented by Excite Credit Union in association with Kaiser Permanente is held every Friday from May 7 - Dec 17 from 10 am to 2 pm. Get out for some exercise -- the market is less than a 15-minute walk from just about any point downtown.

Get your weekly pick of fresh fruits and vegetables and browse artisan vendors' handcrafted goods. The street is wide -- plenty of room to keep socially distant!

How to get to the Market (besides walking):

  • Parking is free for the first 90 minutes in the Second & San Carlos garage. Check ParkSJ.org for parking information.
  • Ride VTA Light Rail to the Convention Center or Paseo de San Antonio station. Check VTA.org for nearby bus stops and schedules. Show your light rail or bus pass for $1 in carrot cash to spend at the Market.

The Downtown Farmers’ Market accepts WIC-FMNP coupons and Cal Fresh-EBT. For more information about the Market, visit our website. To read about PCFMA's COVID-19 safety protocols, click here

County Moves to Yellow Tier

County moves into Yellow Tier
Santa Clara County entered the least restrictive “Yellow Tier” under the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy on Wednesday. The change comes as a result of low daily case rates, even lower test positivity rates and the high number of vaccination rates in the county. More than 75 percent of the county adults 16-older have had at least their first shot.

“For the first time in a very long time, I feel optimistic,” said Dr. Sara Cody, Health Officer for the Santa Clara County Public Health Department.  The press conference can be viewed here.

With the county in a much safer place than it was even a month ago, Dr. Cody announced that she would be lifting most of the local rules currently in place, including requirements that businesses maximize the number of staff who are teleworking. The new Santa Clara County order effective has three primary rules:

  • Employers and schools continue to report cases to the county and everyone quarantines if exposed to COVID-19 or feeling its symptoms
  • Continue to use face-coverings as the state directs, especially inside.  The state’s plan is to ease mask use starting June 15 -- less than a month from today.  
  • Employers need to report the vaccination status of employees in the next two weeks in advance of changes to State masking and social distancing requirements for fully vaccinated people in the workplace, which are scheduled for June 15. Employers must also enforce safety rules for those not vaccinated.

Under the Yellow Tier, many businesses such as bars, restaurants, gyms and movie theaters will be allowed to expand their capacity for indoor operations at 50% capacity, or 75 percent if guests show proof of vaccination.  

For the first time bars and nightclubs that do not provide meals can resume indoor operations at 25% capacity (and 37% capacity if all guests have proof of vaccination). Bowling alleys, wineries, distilleries and breweries can open at 50 percent (75% if all guests are vaccinated).

Attendance at outdoor live performances and concerts is now increased to 67 percent of capacity, up from 20 percent for red level and 33 percent for orange level. Indoor shows for smaller theaters is at 25 percent and 10 percent for large venues such as SAP and The Civic.  Sections with vaccinated people can allow more guests. Be sure to check the guidelines for live seated outdoor  performances and live seated indoor performances.  

Festivals remain closed.  

For more on what the Yellow Tier brings to business, click here

BizChat SJ Open Session - get answers to Yellow Tier questions

BizChatSJ open session
Thursday, May 20 | 3:30-5 pm | Register

Business owners are invited to a free online forum that will provide tips from experts, answers to your questions and a chance to talk with other business owners about dealing with the pandemic. While these meetings are designed to be open-ended , this week’s BizChatSJ will include:

  • Updates on funding sources including Federal Restaurant Revitalization grants
  • Advancing to Yellow Tier
  • Al Fresco in San Jose
About Face Masks

About face masks for those fully vaccinated
The County also addressed this week recent announcements from the CDC and the State Department of Public Health related to masking and social distancing requirements for fully vaccinated people.

“Because the approved COVID vaccines offer extraordinary protection against illness and transmission, fully vaccinated people will not need to follow the same precautions as people who are unvaccinated,” said Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County Health Officer. “We support the State’s decision to align its policies with the CDC’s recommendations on June 15, giving more people time to get vaccinated and giving businesses more time to prepare for that change. If you are eligible and haven’t already been vaccinated, now is the time.” 

Compare the state’s guidance for face coverings, as of May 3, to the CDC’s latest guidance for face coverings.

About Vaccinations

With 75 percent of the County already vaccinated, it is pushing to get to an 85 percent level as soon as possible.

The County of Santa Clara continues to reach the communities hardest-hit by the pandemic to ensure equitable access to these life-saving vaccines. The latest information about vaccines and appointments is available on the County’s vaccine website at sccfreevax.org.

With the recent approval of the Pfizer vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds, the County made the Pfizer vaccine, which is the vaccine approved for that age group, available at all of its vaccination sites. The County is also working with pediatricians throughout the region to ensure they can also offer vaccination to their patients.

Financial Opportunities

Apply for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund 
The Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location. Recipients are not required to repay the funding as long as funds are used for eligible uses no later than March 11, 2023.  The SBA is building the application portal.

Downtown food service businesses can email Nate LeBlanc (nleblanc@sjdowntown.com), SJDA Business Development Manager for personal assistance through the process.  See the graphic above.  

Visit the SBA webpage for a list of entities eligible to apply for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund.

Shuttered Venue Operators encouraged to apply for grant
Ample funds are still available for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program Local performing arts organizations, venues, museums, movie theater operators, and talent representatives are encouraged to apply for an SVOG grant. Eligible applicants must have been in operation as of Feb. 29, 2020. Venues or promoters who received a PPP loan on or after Dec. 27, 2020, will have the SVOG reduced by the PPP loan amount.

PPP Extension Act of 2021 Extended to May 31
The PPP Extension Act of 2021 extends the Paycheck Protection Program an additional two months to May 31 and provides an additional 30-day period for the SBA to process applications that are still pending.  Check with your bank or start your application here.

Cross-program eligibility on SBA COVID-19 relief options

Downtown in the News

DTSJ and SJDA in the news
More recent media reports involving Downtown San Jose with commentary or behind-the-scenes input by San Jose Downtown Association. 

COVID-19 Links
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Let us know how else we can help by replying to this email. We’ll have another message next Thursday. We're in this together.
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