News Release: 3/17/2020
At 2:00 p.m. today, March 16, 2020, City Manager Steven Adams signed a Proclamation of a Local Emergency due to the current threat of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. A special meeting of the City Council is scheduled on Friday, March 20, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. in the City Council Chambers to consider ratification of the proclamation. Despite this action, the City continues to reassure the community that there is no reason for panic. There have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in King City or Monterey County. However, potential spread of the virus does pose a serious potential risk to the public health. Therefore, following similar actions taken by the President, Governor, and County, the Proclamation of a Local Emergency may help the City qualify for reimbursement of costs associated with efforts to prevent the disease in the community, as well as plans and actions that may become necessary to respond to and prevent the spread of an outbreak should one occur in the future.
This action is being taken in coordination with the other South Monterey County cities of Gonzales, Soledad and Greenfield. The City also continues to take proactive actions to protect the current and future public health of the community. A comprehensive COVID-19 Emergency Plan is being finalized and a number of steps have already been implemented. According to Mr. Adams, “the City’s response represents an unprecedented level of coordination by agencies that serve King City. We thank everyone that is working together with such dedication for the well-being of our community.” In addition to coordination with the neighboring jurisdictions listed above, the City’s interagency emergency planning committee has begun communicating on an ongoing basis to coordinate its efforts. This includes the County of Monterey Office of Emergency Services, County of Monterey Health Department, Mee Memorial Hospital, California Water Service, South Monterey County Joint Union High School District, King City Union School District, American Red Cross, and Fort Hunter Liggett.
The City is basing its efforts and decisions on guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), and Monterey County Health Department. This includes adherence to “social distancing” guidelines of 6 feet between individuals and cancellation or postponement of events and activities where these protocols cannot be adhered to. As a result, the Census 2020 Kickoff Party has been cancelled. The Aera Soccer Park Grand Opening and all City recreation and sports programs have been postponed. The City is expanding staffing and resources dedicated to the sanitation and cleaning of City facilities. In order to adhere to social distancing, the City is also prioritizing non-essential services and some may be suspended or limited to appointment, phone and online over the next several days as necessary.
In order for these efforts to be successful, it is urgent for all residents, businesses and organizations to also follow these guidelines to avoid exposure to COVID-19. Wash hands frequently for 20 seconds. Avoid shaking hands and avoid close contact with anyone that is ill. Try to maintain a 6-foot distance from others. Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands. If washing facilities are not convenient, utilize hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Stay home if you become ill and cover your mouth with a tissue or elbow when you cough. It is particularly important for higher risk individuals, including older adults and those with chronic medical conditions, to follow these guidelines and avoid gatherings. More information can be accessed at the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html and the Monterey County Health Department website at www.mtyhd.org/covid19
While response to COVID-19 is the City’s top priority at this time, the City is also concerned regarding the overall physical, mental and economic health of its residents and businesses. The City will be reaching out to local community and faith organizations to determine how we can best work together to address community needs if the emergency becomes prolonged. The City is coordinating with the Chamber of Commerce and Small Business Development Center to monitor any Federal or State assistance that may become available for local businesses impacted and will ensure that information is shared when received. According to City Manager Adams, “while this is a very difficult time for everyone, it is also an opportunity to show why King City is such a special community by supporting and helping each other, particularly those that are most in need.”
If you have questions, you may contact City Hall at 831-385-3281. The City will continue to provide updates on the City’s website at www.kingcity.com and on the City of King Facebook page. Thank you for your patience and understanding.