A Different Holiday Experience

By: 5th District Supervisor, Debbie Arnold

As we move into the holiday season this will be a different holiday experience for most of us. This year the COVID-19 virus has disrupted many of the traditions we enjoy. As the winter months set in, and the holiday season approaches, we will have fewer opportunities to enjoy each other’s company, worship in our churches, shop in our retail stores, or enjoy holiday meals in our favorite local restaurants. While this has been a difficult year; I have witnessed amazing creativity and determination by our local businesses as they try new ways to keep their businesses going.

The holiday season has always been an important time of the year for our businesses, starting with Thanksgiving and continuing through to New Year’s Day. The economic activity brought on by the holidays keep the businesses vibrant, contribute to community joy, and create local jobs. This year will be different to some degree. Our county has seen an uptick in COVID-19 cases since the start of early November. A significant number of new cases have been seen in the Cal Poly student population in San Luis Obispo. To date, the hospitals have not been overwhelmed. It is my hope that our county will remain at a level in the recovery process where we do not go backwards and continue to move forward in the Governor’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy. The Governor’s Blueprint dictates which businesses can be open and includes guidance for how each business can legally operate. County officials are working with the Governor’s office to keep San Luis Obispo County in the red zone or tier 2. Tier 2 allows many businesses to remain open if they operate under certain conditions provided in the blueprint. For more information on the Governor’s blueprint please go to https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/COVID19CountyMonitoringOverview.aspx

The holiday season is also an important time for our county’s many non-profits, as it is known as the season of giving. I appreciate many of the non-profits who have worked tirelessly during COVID restrictions to do what they could to continue the good work their organizations are known for. While Zoom meetings and virtual events have become common place for many of us, I know it has been difficult to accept the cancellations of so many signature events that make this county so special.

The news of a vaccine becoming available soon may be a game changer. I cannot wait to get back to in-person seasonal and business events. I look forward to seeing our stores, restaurants, and hotels filled to capacity with customers.

While we wait for life to return to normal. Enjoy this holiday season with your family and let us make this Thanksgiving one to remember.

It is an honor to represent you as the 5th District Supervisor. Please feel free to call my office with any questions or concerns.

-Debbie Arnold

Atascadero City Big Cheese KL

5th District Supervisor, Debbie Arnold

Debbie Arnold moved to San Luis Obispo County in 1973 to attend Cal Poly, she fell in love with both her husband, Steve, and the farming and ranching values that had been a part of the Arnold family way of life for more than 5 generations. While raising two children, she owned and operated a small business in Atascadero for more than 17 years. She then had the privilege of advocating for local families as a Legislative Aide at the County Supervisor’s office and as a San Luis Obispo District Representative for the State Senate. During these years, she worked with a broad range of community groups and interests, bringing people together to solve problems. Debbie Arnold now serves as the 5th District Supervisor for San Luis Obispo County.