EL CENTRO — The Imperial County Board of Supervisors held its regular meeting Tuesday, February 23, where the supervisors received a weekly update from Imperial County Public Health Director Janette Angulo and Imperial County CEO Tony Rohoutas, regarding COVID-19 and the County’s efforts so far.
According to Angulo, the Public Health Department hosted two mass vaccination events as of February 23, with plans to continue the mass vaccination clinics as more vaccine becomes available. However, she said mass vaccinations are not the only vaccination events the County has hosted.
As of February 22, the Public Health Department received a total of 23,200 first and second doses, of which 21,430 have been administered. In addition to the mass joint vaccination clinics, the Public Health Department has also provided 18 travel clinics, 31 curbside clinics, one mid-size curbside clinic, and assisted with the logistics for the first Veterans Affairs clinic.
Angulo also informed that there are several other enrolled providers throughout the County that receive vaccine directly from the State as well and are responsible for administering the vaccine. The Public Health Department has made recommendations on how to administer the vaccine but cannot control how providers choose to vaccinate.
Providers must still follow the State’s tiered guide for prioritizing vaccinations.
She advised the Public Health Department’s website lists vaccination providers and how to schedule an appointment for individuals who fall in the appropriate tier.
Rohoutas addressed the Board regarding different programs offered to Imperial County residents, including the Coronavirus Business Relief Program, electrical utility bill assistance, water utility bill assistance, the Restaurant Business Grant, and public benefit grants and loans.
The Coronavirus Business Relief Program aided approximately 200 businesses throughout the County, totaling about $1.8 million in funds.
The County helped more than 205 people with electrical utility bill assistance, totaling about $205,000. Water utility bill assistance was provided to residents of the local cities and unincorporated areas.
About $1,500 grants were awarded to 151 locally owned restaurants through the Restaurant Business Grant. Local restaurants reported significant losses due to closures and the inability to offer dine in options. Most restaurants offered limited services, including to-go, pick up and delivery options, and for a period of time some restaurants also offered outdoor dining options.
More than 100 businesses benefitted from the public benefit loans that eventually turned into grants as the Board approved to forgive the loans in full.
Combined efforts through assistance programs totaled approximately $4.6 million.