Update #104
COVID-19 Emergency
September 15, 2020 - 3:00 pm
Active COVID-19 Cases in Big Bear Valley Now at 9

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Continue to Decrease

County Approaching Criteria to Move to Red Tier for Business Activities

Next Big Bear Testing Event Set for September 22
The City of Big Bear Lake is working hard to ensure that the residents, second home owners, investors, businesses, and visitors in our community have the correct information about the status of COVID-19 in Big Bear Lake and the City's response to the COVID-19 event.

This email newsletter is the official guidance from the City of Big Bear Lake, and the City appreciates everyone's adherence to the guidance outlined herein. This email newsletter also serves as the City's official press release regarding the City's COVID-19 response, and press inquiries may be directed to City Manager Frank Rush at 909-866-5832 or via email.
The City issues these COVID-19 updates periodically as significant or new information emerges. To be sure you are receiving the latest and most accurate information, please sign up for this email newsletter by clicking here . PLEASE share this email newsletter with anyone and everyone, as we want to reach as many people as possible with this information. Thank you!
According to the latest data from San Bernardino County, there have now been a cumulative total of 104 confirmed COVID-19 cases since mid-March. Of this total, there have been 52 cases in the City of Big Bear Lake, 38 cases in Big Bear City, 12 cases in Sugarloaf, and 2 cases in Fawnskin.

The City is now receiving Big Bear Valley-specific information from San Bernardino County contact tracers. According to the latest report, 95 of these individuals have recovered from COVID-19, and there are currently only 9 active cases in the Big Bear Valley. This equates to approximately 1 active case per 2,444 residents of the Big Bear Valley. Thankfully, there have been no deaths attributed to COVID-19 in the Big Bear Valley.

There have been a total of 6 new cases reported in the Big Bear Valley over the past two weeks, which equates to a two-week new case rate of 27 per 100,000 population in the Big Bear Valley. This two-week new case rate remains lower than the State of California as a whole, lower than San Bernardino County, and lower than all Southern California counties, thankfully.
Because any COVID-19 patients from the Big Bear Valley would likely be treated by other, larger hospitals in San Bernardino County, City officials continue to closely monitor hospitalization data in the entire County.

According to the latest data, there are currently 239 confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients hospitalized in San Bernardino County. This number has decreased steadily in recent weeks, and continues to trend in the right direction. On July 25, there were a total of 738 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in San Bernardino County.

According to the latest data, there are now a total of 65 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, and this is the lowest number of ICU patients since May 31. There are now a total of 148 intensive care beds still available in San Bernardino County.

Thankfully, the County's health care system has maintained sufficient capacity throughout the COVID-19 emergency.
Most businesses in the City of Big Bear Lake have been operating in some form since late May, and the City continues to adhere to the State’s guidelines.  Under the latest State guidelines, the only businesses in the City of Big Bear Lake that are not permitted to operate are gyms, nail salons and other personal services, the movie theater, indoor entertainment venues, and “true” bars.  Restaurants continue to be limited to take-out, delivery, and outdoor dining options, and most restaurants in the City appear to have adapted well, all things considered. The City remains hopeful that ALL of our businesses will be allowed to open in some capacity sooner than later, and, with the cooler weather approaching we are hopeful that our restaurants will be permitted to resume indoor dining in some capacity very soon

The new State guidelines are included in a color-coded tier system. Under the latest State guidelines, San Bernardino County is currently in the “Purple Tier”. The State has outlined criteria that will hopefully enable the County to move to the “Red Tier” in the coming weeks, and this progression would allow most of our businesses to operate, with restrictions, and allow indoor dining at 25% capacity. The key criteria used by the State to enable movement to the “Red Tier” is the number of new cases per day and the positivity rate for new tests. San Bernardino County is approaching the required threshold for number of new cases (County is currently at 7.4 cases per day per 100,000 population, and the threshold is less than 7 cases), and already meets the threshold for positivity rate (County is currently at 6.4%, and the threshold is less than 8%).  Based on the latest State guidelines, if current trends continue, it appears that the County may be able to progress to the “Red Tier” in late September or early October

In addition to the County’s likely advancement to the "Red Tier", the County is also working with the State to allow sub-regions of the County, likely including Big Bear, to progress through the tier system faster, thus enabling more business activities to occur with fewer restrictions. The Big Bear Valley has a very low new case rate and a very low positivity rate, and it is likely that the Big Bear Valley would qualify for the “Orange Tier" or "Yellow Tier”, the least restrictive tiers under the State guidelines. County leaders continue discussions with the State, and we are hopeful that the County will secure appropriate approvals to recognize sub-regions of the County - thus enabling additional business activity in Big Bear.

A list of the business activities permitted in each tier is located here.
The City is again partnering with San Bernardino County to offer another County testing event in Big Bear Lake on Tuesday, September 22 from 10 am - 2 pm at Big Bear Lake City Hall. Appointments are required, and testing will be provided free of charge to anyone who signs up.

The appointment portal for the Big Bear testing event will open on Saturday, September 19. Please click here to schedule your appointment.
The City and Bear Mountain Family Medicine Urgent Care have entered into a partnership to offer daily COVID-19 testing, at no cost, to residents of the Big Bear Valley. The City had hoped to begin offering testing by September 1, however, the test kits have not yet been delivered. We are expecting delivery any day now, and this testing will begin as soon as possible.

Appointments will be scheduled approximately every 15 minutes, and will be administered at the Urgent Care facility at 41949 Big Bear Boulevard. It will not be necessary to have a doctor's order or have symptoms in order to receive a test. Additional details will be announced in a future City COVID-19 update.
San Bernardino County recently announced the availability of additional COVID-Compliant funding for businesses, and all Big Bear businesses are encouraged to apply.

The County has further modified the program to support small businesses that have incurred expenses moving their operations outdoors. In addition to the original $2,500 provided to participants, the County is now offering an additional $1,200 per business to restaurants and other businesses that have been forced to move outdoors in response to State regulations.

To learn more and apply for additional funding, please click here.
Stay Informed!
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The City of Big Bear Lake strives to keep our residents, property owners, investors, businesses, and visitors well-informed about the City's issues and initiatives - including the COVID-19 event - with an emphasis on information specific to Big Bear Lake and the entire Big Bear Valley.
The easiest way to stay-informed is to sign up for the City's email newsletter and other updates. It's easy to sign up - simply visit the City's website and click on "Text & Email Notifications" in the top center of the homepage. Simply click on the link, enter your name and email address, and you're all set. Signing up will ensure that you receive periodic updates about COVID-19 in Big Bear Lake, the City's new monthly newsletter - Elevation 6752', and other special communications from the City of Big Bear Lake for emergency situations, special events, and more.
In addition to the City's email updates, you can also get the latest information from the City of Big Bear Lake via the following digital platforms:
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Please help us spread the word, and share the City's digital communications platforms with your family, friends, other residents, property owners, frequent visitors, or anyone else who is interested in Big Bear Lake. Thank you!
Frank A. Rush, Jr., City Manager
City of Big Bear Lake
39707 Big Bear Blvd. PO Box 10000, Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
Phone: (909) 866-5831 | Fax: (909) 866-5491