COVID-19 Information

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COVID-19 Information from the City of Golden

JCPH issues Public Health Order requiring masks for everyone 2+ in schools and childcare settings

On November 23, 2021, the Jefferson County Board of Health issued a new public health order that requires all individuals ages three and older to wear a mask or cloth face covering when in indoor public spaces in Jefferson County, regardless of vaccination status. The order went into effect on November 24..

You can read the full press release for more information and back ground on why Public Health Order 20-38 was deemed necessary by the County.

COVID-19 Testing Sites in Jefferson County

If you're not sure where to go to get your COVID-19 test, JeffCo has compiled an updated list of testing centers in Jefferson County and neighboring communities.

Colorado launches new COVID-19 vaccine hotline

REMOTE, (Jan. 25, 2021): Today, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment launched a new call center for the public to ask questions specifically about the COVID-19 vaccine. Now through the end of January, the vaccine call center is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. - 10 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Beginning Feb. 1, hours will extend to 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The new toll-free number is 1-877-CO VAX CO (1-877-268-2926).

Connect for Health Colorado® is operating Colorado’s COVID-19 Call Center

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) is partnered with Connect for Health Colorado® to provide Coloradans with a call center that has support services for COVID-19 testing and containment results. The “COVID Results” Call Center opened on Nov. 19, 2020 and has placed more than 228,000 calls.

The COVID-19 Call Center staff provide outbound call support to deliver COVID-19 test results. The call center is also open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and provides information and guidance in English and Spanish, as well as in other languages using an interpretation service.

State launches BinaxNOW rapid home test program for Colorado schools

As part of ongoing efforts to keep in-person learning as safe as possible, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has developed a new at-home COVID-19 testing program for teachers, staff, and selected students at participating schools. The program is intended to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in schools by allowing symptomatic and exposed individuals to get tested quickly and easily.

Learn more in the press release below.

New CommUNITY campaign seeks to make help easier to find

Jefferson County Community Partners has launched the new CommUNITY campaign in an effort to connect people in need during the pandemic with community resources and assistance available under one easy-to-access hub.

Resources include food assistance, layoff support, unemployment assistance, work opportunities, housing, mental wellness support, childcare access, assistance for populations including pregnant women, children, and aging adults, and more.

The CommUNITY campaign also encourages neighbors to safely check in on each other and share information about services they may not know exist. Information is also available to connect locals to volunteer opportunities with one of the many community partners supporting those in need.

For more information and to access resources, visit www.jeffco.us/community or call 2-1-1. Information is available in English and Spanish at at www.jeffco.us/comunidad

Mines COVID-19 Testing Site Available to General Golden Community

The Colorado School of Mines is accepting appointments from non-Mines community members.

General hours for community COVID testing access are as follows (although hours may vary and are subject to change). People should check the reservation system for availability.

Monday - Friday: 7 am to 10 am; 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturdays: 7 a.m. to noon

Advanced reservations/appointments required.

This testing site is administered though the COVIDCheck Colorado.

JCPH Announces New Office of Pandemic Response, Expands Resources to Control the Spread of COVID-19 in Community

Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) launched the Office of Pandemic Response (OPR) as part of the county’s long-term COVID-19 response and recovery strategy. The OPR’s main purpose will be to control the spread of COVID-19 in the community through at least the next two years by providing community impact support, conducting infection prevention and response, and collecting and assessing epidemiological information for everyone in the county.

An Important COVID-19 Message from the City of Golden

We’ve previously shared recommendations and best practices from public health agencies on protecting yourself from exposure to the COVID-19 virus. We encourage you to continue to pay attention to those recommendations and monitor advice from CDC and local health agencies, as guidance is changing based on the evolving nature of the COVID-19 outbreak.

In addition to the general guidance on protecting oneself from COVID-19 exposure, the City has been actively working with State and local public health officials and implementing recommended measures to help minimize the risk to the Golden community and to our employees. In addition, we have developed contingency plans for our critical operations should the COVID-19 situation further deteriorate.

Here are some of the actions we have taken to date:

(not in any particular order of importance):

Closures

  • City Hall is now open without need of an appointment. Please see our Status of City Services page for a detailed list of facilities and services that are open, will open soon, and what remains closed. Face masks are required when entering buildings.
  • We are in contact with the Jefferson County Health Department and Colorado Department of Health and Environment to ensure we take action on closures of facilities when it is recommended. Please watch for updates that we will post on Facebook and here on Guiding Golden.

Public Safety

  • The Police Department is strongly encouraging everyone to utilize the online reporting tool, which can be found at: cityofgolden.seamlessdocs.com/f/GPDOnlineReporting. This online reporting tool is simple to use on your mobile device, tablet, or computer. You can even upload photos or documents directly from your phone. Online reporting is NOT to be used for EMERGENCIES, crimes in progress, or where suspect information is known. In case of EMERGENCY call 911 or for NON-emergencies call JeffCom Communications Center at (303) 980-7300.
  • The Golden Police Department is now on ACCIDENT ALERT until further notice in an effort to limit exposure to COVID-19 and maintain staffing for emergencies. During this time, police will generally not be dispatched to property damage collisions where the vehicles are movable, but there are exceptions. Please only ask for Police assistance if the accident involves the following: injury and/or death; suspected drug or alcohol use; hit and run; cars are blocking the roadway or causing a safety hazard; involves public vehicle or property.
    For those incidents that do NOT apply, an online report may be made through the online accident reporting tool.
  • The Golden Fire and Police Departments have implemented new protocols for responding to suspected cases of COVID-19 or other illnesses resembling COVID-19. Personnel will wear additional personal protective equipment. Our 9-1-1 dispatch center is advising responding crews of potential calls resembling COVID-19. In those cases, only one member of a responding crew will make initial contact with an individual for assessment while other members standby at a distance. This is a practice most public safety departments are implementing to prevent over exposure to first responders.
  • Golden Fire Department has been in touch with all of our nursing home and senior care facilities and has shared Golden Fire Department protocols as well as information regarding best practices. Golden Fire has discussed the importance of facility planning with each of these entities.
  • The Golden Police Department is working closely with the Sheriff’s Office and other police agencies to ensure adequate coverage arrangements are made should the situation deteriorate.

Fire Permit Application Procedures

  • The Fire & Life Safety Division will still be receiving and processing Fire Permit Applications, but the turn-around time may be delayed. Please visit the Fire Prevention & Life Safety page for more information and complete instructions on how to electronically submit your plans.

Utility Billing

  • The Utility Billing Department will continue to post bills to your account on a monthly basis, however they will not disconnect service until January 2022. If you are having difficulty paying your bills, find resources at www.cityofgolden.net/UtilityBilling, or contact the City of Golden at utilitybilling@cityofgolden.net or (303) 384-8026

Building and ROW Permits

Water

  • There is no immediate risk to Golden’s public water supply from COVID-19. Nevertheless, we have been in touch with public water experts and will be prepared to implement recommendations, if any, made by public health officials and the public water industry. City of Golden staff have prepared to continue to operate our water treatment facility remotely should we encounter staffing challenges.

Municipal Court

  • If you have an upcoming court appearance, please read the Court Entry Rules that will need to followed upon entry into the Court building.

Budget

  • We recognize there will be an obvious economic impact created by the COVID-19 outbreak. Department Directors are limiting all non-essential City expenditures until further notice. The City has adequate reserve funds for these types of emergencies, but nevertheless, conservative spending is prudent until the budget impact of COVID-19 is fully understood.

Communication

  • The City maintains close contact with county officials to coordinate actions.
  • Initially, we posted COVID-19 information on the City of Golden’s homepage, but have since moved all updates and information here to this page. We have also launched a page at www.helpgoldennow.org dedicated to helping those most impacted by the economic effects of business closures required to combat the spread of the virus. These webpages are also be linked through the City’s official website at www.cityofgolden.net.
  • We have reviewed all essential City operations and are refining contingency plans should the COVID-19 situation further deteriorate, and closures of more City facilities become necessary.

Cleaning Guidelines

  • We’ve implemented enhanced cleaning protocols in City facilities. Our employees will be wiping down work stations and high-touch points in public areas several times throughout each day.

What you can expect moving forward:

  • We will continue to monitor public health agency recommendations on public gatherings and other guidance specific to government agencies. If there are changes to City operations or specific actions that impact the Golden community, we will notify the community of these actions.
  • We will provide updates to the Golden community on a regular basis moving forward.

How you can Help:

  • Be diligent about your own hygiene practices and follow CDC and public health recommendations for limiting the spread of COVID-19. Limiting the reach of COVID-19 is a community effort!
  • Pay attention to and have an awareness of changing guidance and recommendations from CDC and public health officials. The spread of COVID-19 is a very fluid, fast-changing situation and recommendation may change often.
  • Check on the well-being of your neighbors, especially the elderly, to ensure they have the resources and supplies they need to sustain a lengthy period of time at home.
  • If you are healthy and able, check-in with our local not-for-profit agencies for ways you can assist them in their respective missions. Despite COVID-19, local not-for-profit agencies deliver critical services (food, shelter, etc.) to Golden residents in need. Visit www.helpgoldennow.com for ways to donate and volunteer.

Many of our local small businesses may struggle to make ends meet during these uncertain times. To the extent you can support them without compromising safety, please do so! Go to VisitGolden.com for a list of take-out and delivery restaurants in Golden and ways to Shop Local without leaving home.

JCPH issues Public Health Order requiring masks for everyone 2+ in schools and childcare settings

On November 23, 2021, the Jefferson County Board of Health issued a new public health order that requires all individuals ages three and older to wear a mask or cloth face covering when in indoor public spaces in Jefferson County, regardless of vaccination status. The order went into effect on November 24..

You can read the full press release for more information and back ground on why Public Health Order 20-38 was deemed necessary by the County.

COVID-19 Testing Sites in Jefferson County

If you're not sure where to go to get your COVID-19 test, JeffCo has compiled an updated list of testing centers in Jefferson County and neighboring communities.

Colorado launches new COVID-19 vaccine hotline

REMOTE, (Jan. 25, 2021): Today, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment launched a new call center for the public to ask questions specifically about the COVID-19 vaccine. Now through the end of January, the vaccine call center is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. - 10 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Beginning Feb. 1, hours will extend to 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The new toll-free number is 1-877-CO VAX CO (1-877-268-2926).

Connect for Health Colorado® is operating Colorado’s COVID-19 Call Center

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) is partnered with Connect for Health Colorado® to provide Coloradans with a call center that has support services for COVID-19 testing and containment results. The “COVID Results” Call Center opened on Nov. 19, 2020 and has placed more than 228,000 calls.

The COVID-19 Call Center staff provide outbound call support to deliver COVID-19 test results. The call center is also open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and provides information and guidance in English and Spanish, as well as in other languages using an interpretation service.

State launches BinaxNOW rapid home test program for Colorado schools

As part of ongoing efforts to keep in-person learning as safe as possible, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has developed a new at-home COVID-19 testing program for teachers, staff, and selected students at participating schools. The program is intended to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in schools by allowing symptomatic and exposed individuals to get tested quickly and easily.

Learn more in the press release below.

New CommUNITY campaign seeks to make help easier to find

Jefferson County Community Partners has launched the new CommUNITY campaign in an effort to connect people in need during the pandemic with community resources and assistance available under one easy-to-access hub.

Resources include food assistance, layoff support, unemployment assistance, work opportunities, housing, mental wellness support, childcare access, assistance for populations including pregnant women, children, and aging adults, and more.

The CommUNITY campaign also encourages neighbors to safely check in on each other and share information about services they may not know exist. Information is also available to connect locals to volunteer opportunities with one of the many community partners supporting those in need.

For more information and to access resources, visit www.jeffco.us/community or call 2-1-1. Information is available in English and Spanish at at www.jeffco.us/comunidad

Mines COVID-19 Testing Site Available to General Golden Community

The Colorado School of Mines is accepting appointments from non-Mines community members.

General hours for community COVID testing access are as follows (although hours may vary and are subject to change). People should check the reservation system for availability.

Monday - Friday: 7 am to 10 am; 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturdays: 7 a.m. to noon

Advanced reservations/appointments required.

This testing site is administered though the COVIDCheck Colorado.

JCPH Announces New Office of Pandemic Response, Expands Resources to Control the Spread of COVID-19 in Community

Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) launched the Office of Pandemic Response (OPR) as part of the county’s long-term COVID-19 response and recovery strategy. The OPR’s main purpose will be to control the spread of COVID-19 in the community through at least the next two years by providing community impact support, conducting infection prevention and response, and collecting and assessing epidemiological information for everyone in the county.

An Important COVID-19 Message from the City of Golden

We’ve previously shared recommendations and best practices from public health agencies on protecting yourself from exposure to the COVID-19 virus. We encourage you to continue to pay attention to those recommendations and monitor advice from CDC and local health agencies, as guidance is changing based on the evolving nature of the COVID-19 outbreak.

In addition to the general guidance on protecting oneself from COVID-19 exposure, the City has been actively working with State and local public health officials and implementing recommended measures to help minimize the risk to the Golden community and to our employees. In addition, we have developed contingency plans for our critical operations should the COVID-19 situation further deteriorate.

Here are some of the actions we have taken to date:

(not in any particular order of importance):

Closures

  • City Hall is now open without need of an appointment. Please see our Status of City Services page for a detailed list of facilities and services that are open, will open soon, and what remains closed. Face masks are required when entering buildings.
  • We are in contact with the Jefferson County Health Department and Colorado Department of Health and Environment to ensure we take action on closures of facilities when it is recommended. Please watch for updates that we will post on Facebook and here on Guiding Golden.

Public Safety

  • The Police Department is strongly encouraging everyone to utilize the online reporting tool, which can be found at: cityofgolden.seamlessdocs.com/f/GPDOnlineReporting. This online reporting tool is simple to use on your mobile device, tablet, or computer. You can even upload photos or documents directly from your phone. Online reporting is NOT to be used for EMERGENCIES, crimes in progress, or where suspect information is known. In case of EMERGENCY call 911 or for NON-emergencies call JeffCom Communications Center at (303) 980-7300.
  • The Golden Police Department is now on ACCIDENT ALERT until further notice in an effort to limit exposure to COVID-19 and maintain staffing for emergencies. During this time, police will generally not be dispatched to property damage collisions where the vehicles are movable, but there are exceptions. Please only ask for Police assistance if the accident involves the following: injury and/or death; suspected drug or alcohol use; hit and run; cars are blocking the roadway or causing a safety hazard; involves public vehicle or property.
    For those incidents that do NOT apply, an online report may be made through the online accident reporting tool.
  • The Golden Fire and Police Departments have implemented new protocols for responding to suspected cases of COVID-19 or other illnesses resembling COVID-19. Personnel will wear additional personal protective equipment. Our 9-1-1 dispatch center is advising responding crews of potential calls resembling COVID-19. In those cases, only one member of a responding crew will make initial contact with an individual for assessment while other members standby at a distance. This is a practice most public safety departments are implementing to prevent over exposure to first responders.
  • Golden Fire Department has been in touch with all of our nursing home and senior care facilities and has shared Golden Fire Department protocols as well as information regarding best practices. Golden Fire has discussed the importance of facility planning with each of these entities.
  • The Golden Police Department is working closely with the Sheriff’s Office and other police agencies to ensure adequate coverage arrangements are made should the situation deteriorate.

Fire Permit Application Procedures

  • The Fire & Life Safety Division will still be receiving and processing Fire Permit Applications, but the turn-around time may be delayed. Please visit the Fire Prevention & Life Safety page for more information and complete instructions on how to electronically submit your plans.

Utility Billing

  • The Utility Billing Department will continue to post bills to your account on a monthly basis, however they will not disconnect service until January 2022. If you are having difficulty paying your bills, find resources at www.cityofgolden.net/UtilityBilling, or contact the City of Golden at utilitybilling@cityofgolden.net or (303) 384-8026

Building and ROW Permits

Water

  • There is no immediate risk to Golden’s public water supply from COVID-19. Nevertheless, we have been in touch with public water experts and will be prepared to implement recommendations, if any, made by public health officials and the public water industry. City of Golden staff have prepared to continue to operate our water treatment facility remotely should we encounter staffing challenges.

Municipal Court

  • If you have an upcoming court appearance, please read the Court Entry Rules that will need to followed upon entry into the Court building.

Budget

  • We recognize there will be an obvious economic impact created by the COVID-19 outbreak. Department Directors are limiting all non-essential City expenditures until further notice. The City has adequate reserve funds for these types of emergencies, but nevertheless, conservative spending is prudent until the budget impact of COVID-19 is fully understood.

Communication

  • The City maintains close contact with county officials to coordinate actions.
  • Initially, we posted COVID-19 information on the City of Golden’s homepage, but have since moved all updates and information here to this page. We have also launched a page at www.helpgoldennow.org dedicated to helping those most impacted by the economic effects of business closures required to combat the spread of the virus. These webpages are also be linked through the City’s official website at www.cityofgolden.net.
  • We have reviewed all essential City operations and are refining contingency plans should the COVID-19 situation further deteriorate, and closures of more City facilities become necessary.

Cleaning Guidelines

  • We’ve implemented enhanced cleaning protocols in City facilities. Our employees will be wiping down work stations and high-touch points in public areas several times throughout each day.

What you can expect moving forward:

  • We will continue to monitor public health agency recommendations on public gatherings and other guidance specific to government agencies. If there are changes to City operations or specific actions that impact the Golden community, we will notify the community of these actions.
  • We will provide updates to the Golden community on a regular basis moving forward.

How you can Help:

  • Be diligent about your own hygiene practices and follow CDC and public health recommendations for limiting the spread of COVID-19. Limiting the reach of COVID-19 is a community effort!
  • Pay attention to and have an awareness of changing guidance and recommendations from CDC and public health officials. The spread of COVID-19 is a very fluid, fast-changing situation and recommendation may change often.
  • Check on the well-being of your neighbors, especially the elderly, to ensure they have the resources and supplies they need to sustain a lengthy period of time at home.
  • If you are healthy and able, check-in with our local not-for-profit agencies for ways you can assist them in their respective missions. Despite COVID-19, local not-for-profit agencies deliver critical services (food, shelter, etc.) to Golden residents in need. Visit www.helpgoldennow.com for ways to donate and volunteer.

Many of our local small businesses may struggle to make ends meet during these uncertain times. To the extent you can support them without compromising safety, please do so! Go to VisitGolden.com for a list of take-out and delivery restaurants in Golden and ways to Shop Local without leaving home.

  • Governor Polis Extends Safer at Home and Updates Protect Our Neighbor Framework, Announces Closure of Bars

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    DENVER - Governor Jared Polis extended the Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors Executive Order, and provided an update on Colorado’s next steps during the COVID-19 pandemic, introducing more details on the Protect Our Neighbors framework. The Governor was joined by Jill Hunsaker Ryan, the Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment; Dr. Rachel Herlihy, the state’s top epidemiologist; Joni Reynolds, the Gunnison County Public Health Director; and Jason Vahling, the City and County of Broomfield Public Health Director.

    “Protect Our Neighbors will allow Colorado to respond more swiftly and effectively at the community level in the event of another surge of cases. We live in a diverse state with cities, booming suburbs, small resort towns, and rural areas with plenty of wide-open spaces. Each community is having their own unique experience with this virus. Going forward, we want to increase our ability to tackle outbreaks at a community level and only issue statewide orders when absolutely necessary,” said Gov. Polis. “We are making some much-needed investments in our local public health agencies, so they can contain and quell an outbreak before it gets out of control. The fate of Colorado in both virus suppression and economic recovery is largely in the hands of Coloradans. If we continue taking the critical steps of staying at home, wearing masks when leaving the house and following social distancing practices, then we will get through this together.”

    The Governor did not announce any additional relaxing of restrictions today, but described the new phase: Protect Our Neighbors that will give local communities more freedom to provide economic opportunity while ensuring that they have the necessary public health capacity. The introduction of the new phase means that different parts of the state could be at different phases of reopening, based on local conditions and capabilities.

    “Each day, we make progress to build the capacity of our public health system -- from ramping up statewide testing sites to onboarding new case investigators and contact tracers systemwide, to identifying creative ways to aggressively acquire PPE. I am proud of the team at CDPHE who have stood strong during this very difficult time, and I’m grateful for our local public health partners who are leading the response against COVID in their communities,” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, executive director of the Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment. “It is important that Coloradans don’t let up now, and this new phase - Protect Our Neighbors - isn’t just words. It means we all accept personal responsibility for the things we can do every day to keep ourselves and others healthy.”

    Moving forward, communities that can demonstrate strong public health and health care systems, paired with low virus levels, can take on more control over their reopening plans. In order to reopen to this greater extent, communities must have:

    • Low virus prevalence;
    • Health care capacity to handle a surge; and
    • Strong public health capacity to contain outbreaks and surges locally, including the ability to test, track, and trace.

    In order to qualify for Protect Our Neighbors, a county (or region) must do two things:

    • Certify qualification according to the scientific metrics; and
    • Submit a mitigation and containment plan on what the county or region will do if they fall out of compliance with any of the metrics. This containment plan must be accompanied by letters of support from local elected leaders including county commissioners and mayors, the hospitals that serve that community, law enforcement, county emergency management, local public health, and if applicable, tribes.

    The certification process will begin next week. Learn more about how a community can qualify.

    Communities in Protect Our Neighbors will be able to permit all activities to occur at 50 percent of pre-pandemic capacity, with at least six feet between non-household members and no more than 500 people in one setting at a time. Local communities may issue more detailed guidelines or public health orders for different settings, so long as the capacity does not exceed these caps.

    The Governor also discussed funding and support for local governments as Colorado looks to move into Protect Our Neighbors. In total, the state is investing $346 million in state and local capacity, with $75 million going directly from the state to Local Public Health Agencies. Gov. Polis also announced two new sources of available funding: a Planning Grant or Infrastructure Strengthening Grant.

    All counties or local public health agencies can apply for a Planning Grant of up to $50,000. If counties have already identified infrastructure needs, they may apply for Infrastructure Strengthening Grants, with a maximum state award of $150,000 and a maximum total grant of $300,000. These grants will require local matching funds and can be spent on investments such as technology, community resource coordination, communication activities to increase compliance with the public health orders, funding for community-based partners and cultural brokers, and enhanced prevention and containment efforts.

    Governor Polis announced the closure of bars. Bars that have taken steps to open as restaurants may continue to operate in-person service, so long as they have patrons seated with their own party only in set seating, spaced six feet apart, and with no mingling. Bars are permitted to sell alcoholic beverages to-go for takeout or delivery consumption if the alcoholic beverages are sold with food. All of the guidelines previously in place around social distancing still apply. Bars may still operate if open under a county variance pursuant to the terms of that county variance. More information can be found in the Governor’s Executive Order.

    View the Governor’s presentation. Watch the full news conference on the Governor’s Facebook page.

  • State health department releases Protect-Our-Neighbors roadmap

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    Local communities will be able to qualify if they meet certain criteria

    DENVER, June 30, 2020: The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) today announced the final roadmap for local communities to qualify for the Protect our Neighbors phase of the COVID-19 response. Local communities will be able to qualify for this status to gain more local control in their communities if they meet certain criteria, including low viral transmission and preparedness of the public health agency to successfully respond to an increase in cases. Once communities meet certification criteria, submit a surge mitigation plan, and are approved by the state, they will be able to permit activities at 50% of pre-pandemic capacity, with at least 6 feet between non-household members, and no more than 500 people in one setting at a time.

    “This is the gold standard of pandemic preparedness, and it is a goal for our communities to aspire to. Not all of our communities will be able to achieve this goal immediately, ” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. “It’s going to be up to all of us to keep wearing masks, washing our hands, and keeping our distance. We need to all do our part to keep transmissions low and prevent a surge on our hospital systems.”

    Next week, CDPHE will provide more information and training on the process for applying for certification, as well as grant funding that will be available to help communities enhance their COVID-19-related planning and infrastructure.

    Three things will enable a community to qualify for Protect-Our-Neighbors certification status:

    • Low disease transmission levels (including stable or declining COVID-19 hospitalizations or fewer new cases in the past two weeks),
    • Local public health agency capacity for testing, case investigation, contact tracing, and outbreak response (including the ability to test 15 people per 10,000 residents per day; the ability to conduct case investigation and contact tracing for at least 85% of assigned cases within 24 hours; a plan that documents the ability to investigate and contact trace their share, based on population, of our state’s overall 500 cases per day goal; and strategies to offer testing to close contacts of outbreak-associated cases)
    • Hospital ability to meet the needs of all patients and handle the surge in demand for intensive hospital care (including the capacity to manage a 20% surge in hospital admissions/patient transfers and two weeks of PPE available.)

    A county may seek to qualify for Protect Our Neighbors by themselves, or voluntarily form a “region” with neighboring counties. Communities that can demonstrate strong public health and health care systems -- paired with low virus levels -- can take on more control over their own reopening plans and help the state avoid statewide shutdowns.

    “Protect Our Neighbors empowers local governments, public health agencies and partners to meet the needs of their communities and scale their response,” said Hunsaker Ryan. “If communities are successful in controlling the outbreak locally, the state will not have to rely on suppressing the virus through extreme statewide shutdowns.”

    Protect Our Neighbors requires all Coloradans to continue to support and protect people who are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19, including older adults and people with underlying medical conditions. It’s important to remember that different communities may be in different phases -- Stay-At-Home, Safer-At-Home, or Protect Our Neighbors -- and may move between levels during this pandemic. Communities that are able to loosen restrictions under Protect Our Neighbors may need to tighten restrictions again to Safer-at-Home or Stay-at-Home levels if they see case increases, outbreaks, or a surge on their hospital systems.

    The Protect-Our-Neighbors metrics were drafted by a workgroup consisting of epidemiologists and public health experts from the CDPHE, the University of Colorado School of Public Health, and local public health agencies from across the state. The group included representatives from urban, rural and frontier counties. In addition, the workgroup consulted health care coalitions and health care systems leadership in drafting treatment metrics. They met over the course of five sessions and reviewed scientific literature, case studies, and expert consultation to develop metrics that would achieve the goal of ensuring that they signify a systems readiness for broader reopening.

    In order to help support communities’ ability to achieve success, the state is making additional federal CARES Act funding available:

    • Planning Grant of up to $50,000 to engage consultants and community partners, and to fund community engagement efforts with communities impacted by and at increased risk.
    • Infrastructure Strengthening Grants of up to $300,000 (up to $150,000 in state funds + local match) to invest in technology; community resource coordination; communication activities to increase compliance with the public health orders; funding for community-based partners and cultural brokers; and enhanced prevention and containment efforts.

    For extensive information on Protect-Our-Neighbors, including guidance for communities to qualify for this phase, please visit covid19.colorado.gov/protect-our-neighbors.

    Continue to stay up to date by visiting covid19.colorado.gov.

  • Road Restrictions for Weekend Creek Traffic

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    Summer is a popular time along Clear Creek. While outdoor recreation is encouraged, the COVID-19 virus is still a big concern. The City of Golden is testing various ways to limit large crowds from gathering along the creek. This weekend, you will notice that 10th Street at Washington Avenue will be closed to local traffic only. The restrictions also include the 9th Street neighborhood adjacent to 10th Street. The kayak park parking lot will be a drop-off location only, and no parking. We encourage visitors to park in the large, free, public parking lot located at 311 10th Street, just a few blocks east of Washington Avenue.

    If you plan to visit the creek or any place where people may be gathering, it is important to take some simple steps to help keep yourself and others safe. Look for signs along Clear Creek and please help protect others by following these simple steps:

    • Wear your mask
    • Sanitize hands
    • Maintain social distancing
    • If you’re sick, stay home

    Colorado Governor Jared Polis discussed the risk levels associated with different activities. He encouraged Coloradans to get out into the state’s great outdoors and participate in low-risk activities like camping, hiking, biking, outdoor exercise and activities. Before going anywhere, ask yourself questions such as:

    • How many other people will be participating in this activity?
    • Can I put distance between myself and others?
    • Do I feel 100% healthy?
    • What is the value of this activity to me versus the risk I am taking?

    Visit covid19.colorado.gov/risks-benefits to assess the risk level of certain activities.

  • An Update on the State Response to COVID-19 by Gov. Polis

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    DENVER - Gov. Polis provided an update on the state’s response to COVID-19 and was joined by State Epidemiologist Dr. Rachel Herlihy to remind Coloradans about the importance of social distancing and wearing masks, especially with the upcoming 4th of July holiday.

    “It remains critical that Coloradans continue taking steps to protect themselves and others. Our state’s success thus far has been due to the actions and personal responsibility of Coloradans, and that will continue to be true,” said Governor Jared Polis. “As long as we continue to wear masks and follow social distancing guidelines, we can avoid seeing cases climb like our neighboring states. As we continue to reopen, more of the responsibility is placed on the individual to do the right thing. I’m proud of how Coloradans have responded during this pandemic and believe we can continue to make the right choices moving forward. As we plan to celebrate our nation’s birthday on July 4th and enjoy their summer, Coloradans should make plans in a safe way, with just their own family or one other family.”

    The Governor discussed the risk levels associated with different activities. He encouraged Coloradans to get out into the state’s great outdoors and participate in low-risk activities like camping, hiking, biking, outdoor exercise and activities.

    When deciding which activities they are comfortable participating in, Coloradans should ask themselves the following questions:

    • How many other people will be participating in this activity?
    • Is the activity outside?
    • Can I put distance between myself and others?
    • How long will the activity take?
    • Do I feel 100% healthy?
    • How will I get there? Biking, walking, and driving in a car are all safer than public transportation.
    • Do I live with someone who is more vulnerable to COVID-19, and would be at high risk if I happened to bring the virus home?
    • What is the value of this activity to me versus the risk I am taking?

    Coloradans can visit www.covid19.colorado.gov/risks-benefits to assess the risk level of certain activities.

    As Coloradans are spending more time outdoors, the state is reminding everyone to be responsible in Colorado’s natural spaces. Gov. Polis highlighted an initiative from the Colorado Tourism Office (CTO) encouraging visitors to show care, not only for destinations but also for the people who call them home. With lines like “How about a ski between you and me?” and “Keep a mask in your pocket, in case you need to rock it,” the CTO is creating a fun and memorable way to remember these important steps. Learn more.

    Gov. Polis also highlighted a best practice being used by Eagle County and encouraged other counties to do the same. Eagle County has asked every hotel and short-term rental to give a letter to guests upon booking providing critical public health information. The letter asks all travelers to follow the “5 Commitments of Containment” while visiting Eagle County, which are:

    • I will maintain 6 feet of physical distance.
    • I will wash my hands often.
    • I will cover my face in public.
    • I will stay home when I am sick.
    • I will get tested immediately if I have symptoms.

    Governor Polis today released guidance to allow outdoor visitation at residential care facilities in order to minimize the potential spread of COVID-19. Some of the most important standards:

    • The facility cannot have outdoor visitation if the facility had any recent positive cases or outbreaks and has not completed the required isolation period of 14 days. Facilities with active cases are not allowed to offer visits.
    • All visits must be scheduled. Prior to the visits, facilities must provide information about COVID-19, and instructions for self-screening on the day of the visit, social distancing and mask-wearing, and details about the visit.
    • The visitor must be greeted outside at a designated area by facility staff, and the staff member will perform temperature check and symptom screening in accordance with current CDC guidelines.
    • All visitors must wear a face mask or cloth face covering. All staff and the resident must wear a surgical or cloth mask unless doing so would inhibit the resident’s health.

    View the full guidance.

    The Governor also signed Executive Order D 2020 113, allowing voluntary or elective surgeries and procedures to proceed under certain conditions.

    The full news conference can be viewed on the Governor’s Facebook page.

  • Balancing Risks and Benefits of Activities During COVID-19

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    Colorado remains the only state in the Pacific or Mountain time zones -- the entire western half of the country -- that is seeing a steady decline in case counts.

    That is a testament to Coloradans continuing to take the pandemic seriously and take the proper precautions: wearing masks, keeping our distance from others, practicing proper hygiene, and protecting vulnerable populations like older Coloradans and those with underlying health conditions.

    As the state continues to reopen, more of the burden is placed on individuals to do the right thing. We have to use common sense and consider the level of risk when participating in certain activities.

    Before participating in an activity, Coloradans have an obligation to ask themselves:

    • How many other people will be participating in this activity?
    • Is the activity outside?
    • Can I put distance between myself and others?
    • How long will the activity take?
    • Do I feel 100% healthy?
    • How will I get there? Biking, walking, driving in a car are safer than public transportation.
    • Do I live with someone who is more vulnerable to COVID-19, and would be at high risk if I happened to bring the virus home?
    • And what is the value of this activity to me versus the risk I am taking?

    Things like camping, hiking, biking, outdoor exercise/activities, or shopping outdoors at a farmer’s market are fairly Low Risk activities.

    Things like dining out, playing on the playground, shopping indoors, or visiting a swimming pool carry a Medium Risk.

    And then activities like airline travel, concerts, attending worship services in-person, personal services, bars, gyms, or large gatherings carry a Higher Risk.

    So please exercise personal responsibility, use common sense, and err on the side of caution.

    Visit covid19.colorado.gov/risks-benefits for more information about how we can continue to keep ourselves and each other safe and healthy.

  • State health department seeks public input on draft guidelines and framework

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    The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) is seeking feedback on additional draft guidelines for the Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors public health order. Coloradans can review draft guidelines in the following areas:

    The deadline for providing feedback is Wednesday, June 17, at 5 p.m.

    The CDPHE is also soliciting feedback on an upcoming public health order -- Protect Our Neighbors. The Protect Our Neighbors phase comes after Stay at Home and Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors phases.

    Coloradans can review the draft framework, and provide feedback by Thursday, June 18, 11:59 p.m.:

    Local communities will have the ability to enter the Protect Our Neighbors phase in late June, if they meet thresholds that will be defined in the order and guidance. Thresholds will include a local community’s ability to contain surges in cases and outbreaks through testing, case investigation, contact tracing, isolation, quarantine, site-specific closures, and the enforcement of public health orders.

    With more activities open and available to the public, it is everyone's responsibility to do whatever they can to reduce the spread of the disease. Always stay home when you are sick. If you go out, remember the big three: wear a face covering; wash your hands frequently; and maintain physical distance with others.

    Continue to stay up-to-date by visiting covid19.colorado.gov.

  • Jefferson County Variance Request Approved by CDPHE

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    The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has approved Jefferson County’s request for a variance to the statewide Safer-at-Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors order with some modifications. The county’s variance request addresses: gathering size; places of worship; gyms; indoor retail malls; outdoor recreation; indoor and outdoor museums and educational experiences; graduations; brew pubs, distilleries and other similar places; event centers; and some additional businesses not specifically provided for in the state’s order.

    The county’s variance allows certain things that are not yet in the state order, such as:

    Gatherings:

    • Indoor settings can have up to 50% occupancy or 50 people (whichever is less) in each confined indoor space.
    • In outdoor settings, the variance allows for 125 people.
    • Indoor malls can begin to open, with a plan approved by Jefferson County Public Health.
    • Graduations can take place, with a plan approved by Jefferson County Public Health.
    • Gyms or places for personal recreation can have up to 50% occupancy or 50 people (whichever is less) in each confined indoor space.

    This collaborative effort is a credit to the on-going efforts of Jeffco elected officials, the public health department, county attorney, community, cities, businesses and county staff – all led by the Jeffco Board of County Commissioners.

    “This approval will help us responsibly continue the process of re-opening Jefferson County,” said County Manager Don Davis. “We hope that everyone will follow the new guidance to ensure a safe and timely economic recovery.”

    As required by the state for variance applications, Jefferson County Public Health approved the COVID-19 suppression plan in the application. As the county’s economy slowly reopens, Jeffco must continue to protect our community, especially those most vulnerable, from COVID-19. Jefferson County asks that everyone continues to follow all public health orders – including staying six feet away from others, wearing a cloth face covering, washing hands, getting tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19, and self-isolating if test results are positive.

    Jefferson County created an annotated version of the state’s public health order to show where the Jeffco variance approvals interact with the state’s order. See the annotated version for the details. You can also view the state’s approval letter on the Jefferson County variance.

  • Governor Polis Signs Updated Safer at Home Executive Order to Transition to Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors

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    DENVER - Gov. Polis today signed an Executive Order, transitioning from Safer at Home to Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors.

    “Our state has some of the most beautiful natural open spaces in the world and we want Coloradans to enjoy our vast, great outdoors. While we are all still safer at home, we are also able to practice greater social distancing in our great outdoors than in confined indoor spaces,” said Governor Jared Polis. “It may feel like we are getting back to normal, but the virus is still here, and it could surge back the moment we let our guard down. We are still far from normal. Coloradans have to remain diligent, and must continue staying home or in the great outdoors away from others as much as possible, wearing masks when we leave the house, and washing our hands. Over these next few weeks, each and every one of us has a responsibility to protect ourselves and others, especially as we begin venturing out onto our trails and open space.”

    “And for anyone experiencing flu-like symptoms, it’s extremely important to not go to work or hang out with others and to get tested. Testing is free, easy, and quick at 47 state-supported, community testing sites across the state including at the Pepsi Center in Denver,” Gov. Polis added.

    “Colorado has millions of acres of accessible federal land, municipal parks, State parks, State and county open space, and other accessible areas that allow for stronger Social Distancing in our great outdoors. Coloradans should Stay at Home or in the great outdoors away from others as much as possible and continue to limit social interactions, remain at least six feet from others not in their household, and wear non-medical facial coverings in public,” the Executive Order reads.

    Previously, high-risk Coloradans, those above 65 or with underlying health conditions, were required to stay home unless absolutely necessary. With this Executive Order, those individuals are now encouraged to also enjoy Colorado’s outdoor spaces at a safe social distance, in addition to staying at home as much as possible. This Executive Order also directs the Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to issue a corresponding Public Health Order.

    CDPHE is also releasing draft guidance on houses of worship, outdoor recreation, personal recreation, and updates to the child care and personal services guidances. Playgrounds and swimming pools can open at limited capacity and the Governor encourages people to have safe fun outdoors away from others. CDPHE is soliciting input from industry and key stakeholders on the draft guidance, and comments are due by Wednesday, at 12:00pm. Final versions will be released Thursday, June 4, 2020. CDPHE also released guidance for short-term rentals, allowing them to reopen as of June 1, 2020. Guidance issued under Safer at Home is still in effect unless updated by this Executive Order or under CDPHE.

  • Governor Polis Takes Action to Address COVID-19 Pandemic

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    DENVER - Governor Jared Polis took further action to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Gov. Polis signed Executive Order D 2020-089, extending the temporary suspension of certain statutes concerning taxpayer filing requirements for certain taxable property.

    The Governor also signed Executive Order D 2020-090, allowing food trucks to operate at rest areas to support the movement of commercial vehicle activities.

  • Following State Order, Jefferson County Restaurants Can Open with Strict Precautions Beginning May 27

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    State outlines requirements to help with safer reopening

    The State of Colorado announced that additional Colorado businesses can begin to reopen with strict precautions to protect public health and safety. According to an extended Safer-at-Home Executive Order, restaurants can open beginning May 27. Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) also extended its Safer-at-Home public health order to align with the state.

    “We support this next step permitting our food establishments to reopen to the public following the state’s science-based guidelines,” said Dr. Mark B. Johnson, MD, MPH, executive director at JCPH. “We appreciate the great efforts of our business community to implement appropriate precautions thus far, and we anticipate that restaurant operators across Jefferson County will take all necessary precautions and be vigilant in implementing all aspects of the new public health orders.”

    The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has released guidance to help restaurants prepare to reopen, including required precautions for both pick-up services and on-premises dining (indoor and outdoor).

    Requirements include but are not limited to:

    • Indoor dine-in service can be held at 50 percent of the posted occupancy code limit and a maximum of 50 patrons, whichever is less.
    • Patrons in different parties must be a minimum of 6 feet apart.
    • Party size must be limited to eight people or fewer.
    • All employees must wear face coverings.
    • Employees must deep clean and disinfect all shared surfaces between parties/at each turnover.

    Additionally, customers are strongly encouraged to take precautions when visiting restaurants:

    • Do not congregate and follow all instructions to keep space between you and others not in your party.
    • Wear a facial covering when not eating or drinking.
    • Use contact-less payment options whenever possible.
    • Vulnerable populations should continue to use curbside delivery/pick-up options.

    “Consumers play an important role in helping our restaurants reopen more safely, too,” Johnson said. “As we take these steps to reopen our economy, we need the community to continue following basic public health recommendations, including wearing a face covering when in public, always staying at least 6 feet away from others, practicing good hygiene, and isolating and getting tested if experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.”

    The state also announced that private camp sites are permitted to open beginning May 25, and children’s day camps and youth sports camps can open on June 1. (Residential overnight camps will be closed in June.) JCPH has rescinded public health order 20-003 to align local policies around youth sports with the state; therefore, these activities will be permitted in Jefferson County beginning June 1 as well.

    For more information about Safer-at-Home and guidance for a variety of businesses and industries including restaurants, children’s day camps and youth sports camps, visit covid19.colorado.gov/safer-at-home or www.jeffco.us/safer-at-home.

Page last updated: 24 November 2021, 12:26