Update regarding Coronavirus ( COVID-19) & Shelter In Place
April 16, 2020


Hello Morgan Hill Community.

The City of Morgan Hill is working hard from home and satellite locations to continue to provide high quality services and support to the Morgan Hill community. We are very proud to share a few of the many efforts our dedicated City teammates have been working on in response to the COVID-19 Shelter-in-Place Order.

City Attorney
• Drafted emergency order prohibiting rent increases
• Providing guidance to City departments and local businesses on shelter-in-place orders
• Advising City departments on changes to local regulations to support businesses

City Manager
• Conducting daily COVID-19 video conference calls with Leadership Team
• Hosting weekly Zoom Town Hall meetings with the Community
• Initiated first call for City Managers in County to discuss local responses and participating in calls hosted by the County
• Advocating for funding at all levels
• Working with County on plans for DePaul Health Center

Community Engagement and Messaging
• Created and updating daily the City of Morgan Hill COVID-19 webpages
• Sending regular social media and e-mail updates
• Routing agreements electronically to keep City business moving
• Preparing and broadcasting videos created by the City Council and Leadership Team
• Managing a virtual information call center
• Coordinating and executing virtual City Council, Planning Commission, and Town Hall public meetings

Development Services
• Coordinated with Development community to determine construction eligibility
• Instituted safety practices for Building Inspectors
• Set up staff remotely to process priority projects
• Set up a virtual Planner on Duty to respond to emails and phone calls
• Set up a virtual application process to accept Planning, Building, and Land Development Engineering applications via email
• Established electronic systems for stamping plans, issuing permits, and accepting fees
• Began managing encroachment permits and work in the public right of way in accordance with the shelter-in-place order, cancelling all work not allowed per the Order
• Moved towards online contract management and online bidding to allow essential contract work to continue relating to significant street maintenance and wastewater projects
• Continued to provide public works inspection services on essential projects

Economic Development
• Providing information to businesses and employees affected by COVID-19 through dedicated web page
• Sharing key relevant COVID-19 information to businesses
• Deployed a Business Impact Survey that was emailed and mailed to all businesses
• Coordinating Business Resiliency Roundtables to provide technical information and support to businesses
• Relaxed on-street parking regulations to support curbside pick-ups
• Working with the Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Association, and Visit Morgan Hill to support businesses

Finance
• Continuing to monitor and analyze the impact to City’s finances from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Recommended Budget which is anticipated to be released on April 17, 2020 will include some steps that staff has taken to address the anticipated revenue shortfalls. In addition, staff intends to bring to the City Council additional proposals and adjustments to the budget to ensure the City’s fiscal sustainability.
• Implemented virtual credit card processing and online receipting for permits for teammates working from home
• Establishing COVID-19 related expenditures tracking to submit for reimbursement from FEMA

Fire
• Prepared an Incident Action Plan (IAP) detailing all COVID-19 related decontamination and operational readiness
• Prepared a Pandemic Plan outlining how we will adjust if we have limited operational resources

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
• Created a web map for City teammates so that they can access MHMaps layers, including a new senior care facilities layer, remotely without City network access
• Provided methodology, source data, and formatting requirements to consultant tasked with developing the new City address database

Housing
• Collaborated with regional partners and community-based organizations to assist families and individuals in need of rental assistance and/or hotel vouchers for homeless families with health conditions
• Created and managing a local list of Food and Community Resources available to the community during COVID-19
• Collaborated with Silicon Valley Strong and Santa Clara County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to gather ideas, resources, volunteer opportunities, and needs to create a regional website for all Silicon Valley residents
• Sending resource emails and COVID-19 updates related to State and County Eviction Moratorium Ordinances, and Morgan Hill Rent Freeze information to the School District, Charter Schools, local Apartment Communities, Faith Based Community, Mobile Home and RV Parks, local Community Based Organizations, South County Farmers, Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Morgan Hill, and South County Collaborative
• Requested essential sanitation items for Safe Park and Inclement Weather Shelter from Santa Clara County EOC

Human Resources
• Implementing the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) for our City teammates
• In coordination with Community Services, developed and implemented COVID-19 Interim Facility Use Policies and Procedures to follow when entering and working within City facilities to ensure employee safety through the shelter-in-place

Information Technology
• Issued 20+ laptops to City teammates so they can work remotely
• Increased internet connectivity by 5x
• Deployed a new scalable Virtual Private Network (VPN) solution
• Transitioned the majority of network users from the old VPN to the new VPN: installed the new VPN on almost all city issued laptops 4
• Procuring new laptops to support increased work from home capabilities

Maintenance and Utilities
• Continuing to provide essential services to the community in the areas of water, wastewater, street maintenance, storm drain maintenance, and maintenance for fire prevention
• Supported the closure of specific amenities within park areas in accordance with the shelter-in-place order
• Implemented an operational plan to ensure continuity of operations to support essential services during the COVID-19 emergency

Police
• Successful investigations: Interrupted car theft rings, arrested construction theft burglar, arrested serial graffiti suspect and more…
• Investigated over 100 COVID-19 order complaints
• Hired two Police Officers, Graffiti Abatement teammate, and continuing hiring process for Dispatch and Records teammates
• Filmed community safety message video
• Participated in a dozen plus Birthday visits
• Set up 1/3 of the department to work from home - Special Operations and Records
• Patrol and Traffic Divisions have been assisting the Morgan Hill Unified School District with traffic control and food distribution

Recreation
• Opened a virtual membership to Centennial Recreation Center (CRC) Members and the community
• Partnered with the YMCA to provide for the pickup of nearly 100 meals a day to Seniors
• Coordinated the use of recreation facilities for other purposes during COVID-19 closure


We are here for you. We will get through this together!
County/State/Federal Updates

Update on Stimulus Checks
The Federal CARES Act Economic Impact Payments (also known as stimulus checks) have started to hit individual banking accounts. Those who filed their taxes 2018 or 2019, should automatically receive a payment. Residents can check their payment status here .

Residents who did not file income taxes in the last two years can use the IRS "Non-Filers: Enter Your Payment Info Here" application to receive their stimulus check. This tool provides a simple, easy option for people who either don’t need to file a Federal income tax return or with too little income to file. For more information, see the Frequently Asked Questions provided by Free File Fillable Forms, the certified IRS partner that is managing the tool. 

On April 15, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom announced new initiatives to support the millions of California workers who have lost jobs or wages as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the full press release here .

Expanded Support for California Workers
Starting Monday, April 20, the Employment Development Department (EDD) will launch a new call center that will operate 7 days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The Unemployment Insurance Branch will be upstaffed with 1,340 employees, including 740 EDD employees and 600 employees from across state government.

The EDD will also stand up a one-stop shop for individuals applying for unemployment insurance and the new federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program starting April 28. PUA benefits are distinct from unemployment benefits and cover the self-employed, ​employees who lack sufficient work history, gig workers, and independent contractors. PUA benefits will be issued within 24-48 hours instead of the traditional 21 days ​for regular unemployment claims.

Disaster Relief Fund for Undocumented Immigrants
The Governor also announced a $75 million Disaster Relief Fund for undocumented immigrants who are ineligible for relief benefits. Starting next month, approximately 150,000 undocumented adult Californians will receive a one-time cash benefit of $500 per adult with a cap of $1,000 per household. Funds will be dispersed through a community-based model of regional nonprofits with expertise and experience serving undocumented communities.

Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR)
Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR), a network of foundations focused on immigration issues, has also committed to raising $50 million to support direct financial assistance to families of undocumented immigrants through the California Immigrant Resilience Fund. California has developed an immigrant resource guide to provide information about COVID-19 related assistance, including public benefits, that are available to immigrant Californians.
Business Resources

The City of Morgan Hill, the Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Association, and Visit Morgan Hill are all committed to doing what we can to support our business community during these uncertain times. We are focused on providing information and resources available to our business community. To better understand the range of impact COVID-19 is having in our local business community, we are asking businesses to respond to this COVID-19 Morgan Hill Business Impact survey . In addition, the City is continuously updating information for businesses and employees on the City website .

Business Resiliency Roundtables
Recognizing that we are in this together and that more than ever we need each other, we are going to convene virtual Business Resiliency Roundtables. These meetings will be organized by industry and will feature a guest speaker that can offer insight on industry resources. You will also be able to hear from your peers and share what you are doing to thrive in this new world. Finally, if you want to help, we have identified some ways that you can get involved, either by donating your time and expertise or by donating money to organizations that are working to keep small businesses afloat. Visit the  Choose Morgan Hill web page  for more information and to register.  

County of Santa Clara Eviction Moratorium Includes Small Businesses
County of Santa Clara Eviction Moratorium Includes Small Businesses: Santa Clara County has issued an Ordinance covering March 24 through May 31, unless otherwise extended, ordering that small businesses located in San Jose and across the County renting or leasing real property for commercial, business, income-producing, or otherwise non-residential use, cannot be evicted for nonpayment of rent if such business suffered substantial loss of income due to COVID-19. Refer to County Ordinance NS-9.287 for further details. The County’s ordinance relies on U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) definitions of small businesses based on industry. Find detailed information and an FAQ on the Santa Clara County moratorium page.
Schools
On April 1, 2020, Governor of California Gavin Newsom and California State Superintendent Tony Thurmond stated that school buildings in California will remain closed for the remainder of the school year due to needed action to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

During the closure of our schools, the MHUSD Student Nutrition Department will continue to provide meals to any children in our community under the age of 18. 

Please visit the Morgan Hill Unified School District website for further information related to Morgan Hill schools.
Morgan Hill residents with non-emergency questions or concerns are directed to call or text 408.767.6404 . This number is monitored regularly, Monday - Friday, during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Messages will be responded to within 24 hours, during weekdays.

If you haven’t already, we encourage you to:

Information and resources are being continually updated on the following websites:

Santa Clara County residents should call 2-1-1 for public health information on COVID-19. Please be aware that you may need to remain on hold for a period of time.

Follow updates on the City of Morgan Hill’s  website  and on  Facebook Twitter Instagram , and  Nextdoor .
City of Morgan Hill | www.morganhill.ca.gov