Navigating 2021

By: 5th District Supervisor, Debbie Arnold

2021 arrived unceremoniously with the entire County under a new set of orders restricting businesses and activities. Here at the County, we continue to communicate with the Governor’s office asking for local control with respect to business and school closures. The Board of Supervisors contemplated a lawsuit after being put into the Southern California Region’s reopening plan, but an unexpected change in the Governor’s restrictions caused us to rethink that option. San Luis Obispo County was put back into the “purple tier” which loosened restrictions a bit. I did join Supervisor Peschong in writing yet another letter to the Governor asking him to consider a policy of asking agencies like the ABC to refrain from citing or fining our restaurants for COVID-19 related compliance issues during this difficult time. So far, there has been no response.

Speaking of COVID-19, the County Emergency Services Team has been busy administering vaccines. January saw the biggest caseload of active COVID-19 cases to date, but February has seen a drastic reduction in cases, so hopefully we can look forward to getting the virus under control.

The month of January ended with some much-needed rain. Most of the North County experienced several inches of rain combined with high winds. There was minimal damage considering the conditions, but County road crews stayed busy for days removing mud and downed trees.

As we move closer to the beginning of Spring, we still see struggling businesses and more shuttered commercial buildings. Schools have remained in various levels of closure as the school year winds down. It has been nearly a year since COVID-19 changed our daily lives and sent many of our businesses into a tailspin. I know many of you have been vigilant in doing whatever you could to support our local businesses. It is my hope that we can reopen schools and all our businesses soon. To help speed up the process, the County is focusing on providing vaccines to the local population. Though the County team has worked hard to get as many people access to the vaccine as possible, the challenge has been the supply chain. It has been difficult to get the vaccine as quickly as we originally hoped. While it may be slower than anticipated, the County continues to make vaccines a top priority.

I invite you to visit the website for any information on COVID-19 cases, vaccines, assistance, and current business status changes and orders. I know we are all anxious to find ourselves able to enjoy our normal activities and be able to patronize all our wonderful local businesses. Please feel free to contact my office with any questions or concerns.

It is an honor to serve you as your 5th District Supervisor.

-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.