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January 20, 2021

Veterans’ centers struggling under Covid-19 restrictions

VFW building Watsonville
WATSONVILLE—At their core, Veterans of Foreign Wars halls and American Legion centers are places where former military members can gather to find camaraderie and a shared bond unique to their life experiences. “It’s a big part of what they consider their mental health treatment,” said...

‘Spreading holiday cheer’: MacQuiddy students gifted new Vans

MacQuiddy Elementary School
WATSONVILLE—A group of students at MacQuiddy Elementary School got a special holiday treat last week.  Thanks to the efforts of instructor Amy McGee and others, 15 kids—all members of Pajaro Valley Unified School District’s Safe Spots program—were handed an armload of gifts Friday, including a...

Second Harvest to provide holiday food distribution Wednesday

second harvest food bank
SANTA CRUZ COUNTY—On Wednesday Second Harvest Food Bank will host its weekly community drive-thru food distribution at the County Fairgrounds 2601 East Lake Ave., from 9am–1pm. “This is a departure from our normal Friday distribution so that individuals and families in our community have access...

Kids did not spread coronavirus in Excel In Place program, officials say

Covid-19 childcare
WATSONVILLE—A pair of positive Covid-19 tests has shut down the Excel In Place program at the Environmental Science Workshop in Watsonville through its Dec. 18 end date. Watsonville Parks and Community Services Director Nick Calubaquib said two employees at that location on Second Street recently...

County businesses prepare for another Covid-related closure; ICUs ready for surge

Watsonville coronavirus
By Jacob Pierce, Good Times News Editor Businesses all over Santa Cruz County are getting ready to close down or reduce their operations, as a new stay-at-home order takes effect. The order goes live at 11:59pm Thursday, now that the Bay Area region hit a threshold...

Local nurses demand ‘safe’ patient ratios

watsonville nurses demonstration ratios
WATSONVILLE—A group of about 30 nurses at Watsonville Community Hospital held a demonstration Wednesday asking that management keep nurse-to-patient ratios at their present level. The demonstration came five days after the California Department of Public Health sent a memo to the state’s general acute care...

CDPH gives high school sports ‘blueprint’ to return to play

By Emanuel Lee, Hollister Free Lance Sports Editor Calling it the “document we’ve been waiting for,” Central Coast Section Commissioner Dave Grissom said the California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH) recent release in regards to youth sports gives him and the other 10 section commissioners...

Watsonville Hospital workers among first to receive Covid-19 vaccine

Watsonville hospital covid-19 vaccine
WATSONVILLE—Working as an Environmental Services Aide at Watsonville Community Hospital, Benjamin Lamsen cleans rooms in the Emergency Department and the Intensive Care Unit. That work has been challenging, he says, since the Covid-19 pandemic began its spread across the globe. In addition to increased...

Bay Area region hits ICU capacity ‘trigger,’ more restrictions loom

Watsonville coronavirus
Growing strain on the health care system has triggered a stricter stay-at-home order for Santa Cruz County and the rest of the Bay Area region identified in Gov. Gavin Newsom’s recently issued regional order. Intensive care unit (ICU) capacity in the Bay Area region, which...

Law enforcement prioritizing education of Stay-At-Home orders over citations

law enforcement covid orders
CENTRAL COAST—Most counties throughout California have now imposed some version of stay-at-home orders, which consist of a series of requests and requirements by local leaders and are designed to slow the spread of Covid-19. Gov. Gavin Newsom on Dec. 3 said that new orders keeping...
watsonville propane storage facility

Watsonville City Council unanimously rejects propane facility

WATSONVILLE—The Watsonville City Council unanimously denied a special use permit for a proposed propane storage facility after a more than two-hour hearing in which...