SBA offers disaster assistance to San Bernardino County small businesses impacted by severe storms and flooding

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses economically impacted by the severe storms and flooding in San Bernardino County that occurred Nov. 27 – Dec. 1, 2019, SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced Wednesday. SBA acted under its own authority to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s designated representative, Mark S. Ghilarducci, director of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services on Feb. 12, 2020.

“SBA is strongly committed to providing the most effective and customer-focused response possible to assist California small businesses with federal disaster loans. We will be swift in our efforts to help these small businesses recover from the financial impacts of this disaster,” said Administrator Carranza.

“Small nonfarm businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred,” said Director Tanya N. Garfield of SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West.

“These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. Disaster loans can provide vital economic assistance to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing,” Garfield added.

Eligibility is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate of 3.875 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations with terms up to 30 years and are restricted to small businesses without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.

The Inland Empire Small Business Development Center is offering free, personalized counseling to help affected businesses in their recovery. Businesses may contact Vincent McCoy by emailing vmccoy@iesmallbusiness.com, calling (951) 781-2345 (office) or (951) 757-7086 (cell), or by visiting the Small Business Development Center at 603 N. Euclid Avenue, Ontario, CA,  91762, Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visitors are encouraged to call first for an appointment.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.

The deadline to apply for economic injury is Nov. 13, 2020.


Published February 20, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | Leave a comment | Number of Views (3)



Applicants sought for retirement board vacancy

The County invites qualified members of the public to apply to fill a vacant seat on the Board of Retirement.

The Board of Retirement’s primary role is to have the sole and exclusive fiduciary responsibility over the assets of the retirement system and to administer the system in a manner that will assure prompt delivery of benefits and related services to the participants and their beneficiaries. For more information regarding the Board of Retirement, visit https://www.sbcera.org.

Those seeking appointment should possess:

  • At a minimum, a bachelor’s or equivalent degree in economics, business/public administration, finance, accounting or other closely related field. Advanced degrees in these fields or other related fields such as law, or certifications in finance, accounting or other closely related fields shall be desired qualifications;
  • A minimum of two years of recent experience performing budget/financial analysis or managing financial investments in a public agency or private institution. Prior knowledge or experience with fiduciary responsibility is desirable;
  • Advanced communication skills to express ideas with conviction and clarity;
  • Strong analytical skills to understand investment policies and concepts;
  • A strong forward-thinking visionary approach to recognize the value of present-day decisions and their impact on future plan benefits and investments;
  • The ability to clearly articulate SBCERA’s general policies and concepts to various audiences;
  • A demonstrated ability to work well with a board, commission, committee or other deliberative body.

Those interested in being appointed as a Board of Retirement member must submit a resume before 5 p.m. on Feb. 24, 2020 to ExecRecruit@hr.sbcounty.gov or at the following address:

San Bernardino County Human Resources Department

157 West Fifth St., First Floor

San  Bernardino CA 92415-0440

Attn: Silvia Zayas

For more information, see legal notice at http://www.sbcounty.gov/Uploads/CAO/Feature/Content/retirement_board_notice.pdf.


Published February 14, 2020 | By Administrator | Leave a comment | Number of Views (21)



Victor Valley Museum hosts Arthropolooza: Ultimate Bugfest

Live insect encounters and hands-on activities include the “Dare Box”

Arthropolooza: the Ultimate Bugfest buzzes into the Victor Valley Museum on Saturday, Feb. 22, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The museum and local partners present demonstrations and hands-on activities with live insects, insect specimen displays, interactive bee activities, backyard conservation, composting demo, and more to engage and educate visitors participants about the Mojave Desert’s creepy crawlers, and an emphasis on established and endangered arthropod species in our region..

Featured are live arthropods including hissing and cave cockroaches, a Desert Hairy Scorpion, tarantulas, millipedes, and more from the main museum’s Exploration Station live animal collection and mounted insect displays from the Education Collection. Visitors will get to test their sense of touch and bravery to discern concealed insects in the “Dare Box.” Facilitated cockroach races are scheduled during the event. Kids will get to create their own bug accessories and pose in front of a large scale bugface selfie station.

Joining the event are BeeRooted; UC Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners; Mojave Desert Resource Conservation District; and San Bernardino County Environmental Health Mosquito and Vector Control; Mojave National Preserve;  Rivers & Lands Conservancy;  Mojave Desert Land Trust; San Bernardino County Agricultural Weights and Measures.

Jessika Vazquez, Curator of Integrated Sciences said, “California is home to many arthropod species, some that are considered endangered due to environmental pressures like the Delhi Sand Flower-loving fly, a nectar feeding fly, that can be only be found in small sections of San Bernardino and Riverside counties. Come spend a weekend with our partners and their many legged guests for this popular event!”

The Victor Valley Museum and the County Museum’s other exciting events and exhibits reflect the effort by the Board of Supervisors to achieve the Countywide Vision by celebrating the arts, culture, and education in the county, creating quality of life for residents and visitors.

The Victor Valley Museum is a branch of the San Bernardino County Museum located at 11873 Apple Valley Road in Apple Valley. Regular museum days and hours are Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $5 (adult), $4 (senior or military), and $2.50 (student), EBT cardholders are $1. Children under 5 and the San Bernardino County Museum Association members are free. Parking is free. For more information, visit www.sbcounty.gov/museum. The museum is accessible to persons with disabilities.


Published February 4, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | Leave a comment | Number of Views (35)



Fire Chief Munsey to attend State of the Union, promote federal support for public safety

San Bernardino County Fire Protection District Chief Dan Munsey will attend the president’s State of the Union address on Tuesday as the guest of San Bernardino County Congressman Pete Aguilar. Chief Munsey said he sees his attendance as an opportunity to build upon the good working relationships the County has with federal agencies and lawmakers.

County Fire Chief Dan Munsey

“I’m honored to have the opportunity to represent our region and San Bernardino County Fire at the president’s State of the Union address,” Chief Munsey said. “Our county depends on the relationship we have with our federal partners to ensure the safety of our residents, and I look forward to the chance to reinforce that relationship.”

“The County is proud and fortunate to have Chief Munsey represent us and the public safety needs of our residents in Washington and at the State of the Union address,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “When disaster strikes our county, the men and women of County Fire stand bravely on the front lines. It is appropriate to have their organization stand as a symbol of the value in partnerships with the federal government.”

Dan Munsey was appointed County Fire Chief in November. Munsey began his career in the fire service in 1995 as a paid-call firefighter. He became a full-time firefighter in 1998, where he was assigned to Lake Arrowhead. He has worked in every division of County Fire, promoting to captain in 2004, battalion chief in 2008, and assistant chief in March 2014.

The San Bernardino County Fire Protection District has about 1,000 employees, covers approximately 19,000 of the county’s 20,105 square miles, and serves more than 60 incorporated municipalities and unincorporated communities within four Regional Service Zones – Mountain, North Desert, South Desert and Valley – including the City of Grand Terrace, City of Hesperia, City of Needles, City of San Bernardino, City of Twentynine Palms, City of Upland, Town of Yucca Valley, and unincorporated areas. Additionally, County Fire provides contractual fire protection services to two cities: Adelanto and Fontana, via its independent fire protection district.

County Fire is a community-based, all-hazard emergency services organization providing emergency mitigation and management for fire suppression, emergency medical services, ambulance services, hazardous materials response, arson investigation, hazard and terrorism/weapons of mass destruction abatement, and technical rescue, including water-borne, flooding and mudslide, and winter rescue operations.

 


Published January 31, 2020 | By Administrator | Leave a comment | Number of Views (29)



County Museum Director Appointed to National Commission

The American Alliance of Museums (AAM), based in Arlington, VA, has announced the appointment of San Bernardino County Museum Director Melissa Russo as a new Accreditation Commissioner. Ms. Russo will fill one of two vacant seats on the nine-member board, serving a term of five years.

AAM accreditation is the museum industry’s mark of distinction and offers peer-based validation of a museum’s operations and impact. The Accreditation Commission is the body responsible for making independent decisions regarding the accredited status of the nation’s museums. The Commission meets three times per year and is made up of museum professionals serving in a volunteer capacity that collectively bring a wide range of experience and expertise in the museum field.

“Melissa’s appointment is a very proud moment for San Bernardino County,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “This is a testament to the great work Melissa has done as the County Museum Director, and to our county’s commitment to innovation and excellence.”

The San Bernardino County Museum has held accredited status since 1974 and received 10-year re-accreditation under Ms. Russo’s tenure as the County’s Museum Director, a position she has held since 2015. As an Accreditation Commissioner, she brings over two decades of experience successfully managing both government and private nonprofit museums, along with diverse nonprofit board leadership and experience. Over the course of her career, Russo has been highly active in the museum field at-large. She is a prolific speaker at local, regional, and national conferences, and has authored articles for museum publications on a wide range of practical topics and contemporary issues. She has served as an AAM Accreditation Peer Reviewer and an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant reviewer, and has served on AAM’s National Program Committee.

Accreditation Commissioners self-nominate and are appointed by the AAM Board Chair based on recommendations from a nominating committee comprised of representatives from the Board, Accreditation Commission, and selected discipline-specific museums associations. This year, over 30 nominees competed for two open seats, with Russo and Marise McDermott, President and CEO of the Witte Museum in San Antonio, selected.

“Based on their experience and high praise from their peers, I know that Marise and Melissa will serve AAM with dedication and enthusiasm, and the perspectives they bring will add value to the Commission’s work” said Kippen de Alba Chu, AAM’s Board Chair. “I am grateful for their commitment and volunteer time devoted to these vital positions.”

The San Bernardino County Museum’s exhibits of regional cultural and natural history and the Museum’s other exciting events and programs reflect the effort by the Board of Supervisors to achieve the Countywide Vision by celebrating arts, culture, and education in the county, creating quality of life for residents and visitors.

The San Bernardino County Museum is at 2024 Orange Tree Lane, at the California Street exit from Interstate 10 in Redlands. Parking is free. For more information, visit www.sbcounty.gov/museum. The museum is accessible to persons with disabilities.


Published January 30, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | Leave a comment | Number of Views (24)



3rd Annual Ultimate Bugfest at County Museum

Live insect encounters and the “Dare Box” at Arthropolooza

Arthropolooza: the Ultimate Bugfest buzzes into the San Bernardino County Museum on Saturday, Feb. 15, and Sunday, Feb. 16 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The museum and local partners present demonstrations and hands-on activities with live insects, insect specimen displays, interactive bee activities, backyard conservation, composting and more with an emphasis on established and endangered arthropod species in our region.

Family activities include a buggy photo booth, bug relay races, live bug encounters, Catch a Bug!, and bug crafts. The “Dare Box” will test visitors’ sense of touch and bravery to discern concealed insects. Live arthropod encounters include hissing and cave cockroaches, a Desert Hairy Scorpion, tarantulas, millipedes, and more from the museum’s Exploration Station live animal collection.

Joining the event are Hidden Valley Nature Center; San Bernardino County Agricultural Weights & Measures;  Bee Rooted; Joshua Tree National Park; UC Riverside Department of Entomology; The Wildlands Conservancy; San Bernardino County Environmental Health Mosquito and Vector Control; UCCE Master Gardener;, and Inland Empire Resource Conservation District (IERCD).

Jessika Vazquez, Curator of Integrated Sciences said, “California is home to many arthropod species, some that are considered endangered due to environmental pressures like the Delhi Sand Flower-loving fly, a nectar feeding fly, that can be only be found in small sections of San Bernardino and Riverside counties. Come spend a weekend with our partners and their many legged guests for this popular event!”

The San Bernardino County Museum’s exhibits of regional, cultural and natural history and the Museum’s other exciting events and programs reflect the effort by the Board of Supervisors to achieve the Countywide Vision by celebrating arts, culture, and education in the county, creating quality of life for residents and visitors.

The San Bernardino County Museum is at 2024 Orange Tree Lane, at the California Street exit from Interstate 10 in Redlands. The museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Arthropolooza is included with general admission: $10 (adult), $8 (military or senior), $7 (student), and $5 (child aged 5 to 12). Children under five and Museum Association members are admitted free. Parking is free. For more information, visit www.sbcounty.gov/museum. The museum is accessible to persons with disabilities.


Published January 30, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | Leave a comment | Number of Views (28)



Early voting opens for the 2020 Presidential Primary Election

Voting in the March 3, 2020 Presidential Primary Election begins Monday at the County of San Bernardino Registrar of Voters office for any of the county’s one million registered voters.

Voters do not have to wait for Election Day, or even wait to receive a ballot in the mail, to vote. Starting at 8 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 3, voters can obtain and cast a ballot at the Registrar of Voters office, 777 E. Rialto Avenue in San Bernardino. Early voting hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday, Feb. 29, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Voters may also cast their ballots at the Registrar of Voters office on Election Day, Tuesday, March 3, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Five additional early voting sites will open in Apple Valley, Joshua Tree, Lake Arrowhead, Ontario, and Victorville beginning Tuesday, Feb 25.

Also on Monday, Feb. 3, mail ballots for voters on the permanent mail ballot list will be delivered to the U.S. Postal Service. Deliveries will continue as additional mail ballot requests are received up until Tuesday, Feb. 25.

To assist San Bernardino County voters, County Voter Information Guides began mailing on Thursday, Jan. 23, and will continue to be mailed to all voters registered as of Feb 18. The guides include a sample ballot, candidate statements, local measure information, and voting instructions.

Voters can also access the guide by visiting the Registrar of Voters website, www.SBCountyElections.com, and clicking on the Elections menu tab.

The County’s purchase of a new voting system has caused one small change to the voting instructions; voters will fill in an oval to the left of the name of the candidate of their choice. In prior elections with the old voting system, votes were cast by drawing a line between two ends of an arrow located to the right of the candidate’s name.

For voters who prefer to cast a ballot in person on Election Day, the polling place check-in process will be more efficient. Poll workers will find voter names using the new Poll Pads, instead of searching through a paper roster.

Voters can find their assigned polling place on the back cover of their Voter Information Guide, by using the My Elections Gateway application on the Registrar of Voters website, or by calling (909) 387-8300.


Published January 29, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | 2 Comments | Number of Views (34)



Update on repatriation of U.S. citizens from China

San Bernardino County along with the City of Ontario, Ontario International Airport, state and federal partners stood ready to provide a safe and welcoming landing for American diplomats and U.S. citizens returning from China. Late Tuesday evening, the Centers for Disease Control announced the flight scheduled to land at Ontario International Airport would be diverted to March Air Reserve Base in Riverside County.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the passengers were screened before they took off; monitored during the duration of the flight by medical personnel on board; screened again on landing to refuel in Anchorage, Alaska; monitored on the last leg of the flight by medical personnel on board; evaluated upon arrival at March Air Reserve Base; and then they will be monitored for symptoms post-arrival. For more information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control website linked here.

In the meantime, no cases of Novel Coronavirus have been reported in San Bernardino County.

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that circulate mostly among animals, including camels, cats and bats. Common symptoms in an infected human include a fever, cough and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

“There have been no confirmed coronavirus cases in San Bernardino County to date,” said Dr. Erin Gustafson, San Bernardino County Assistant Health Officer. “We will keep citizens informed as more information about the coronavirus is made available. At this time, we urge the public to remain calm, as it is very unlikely to be at risk of contracting the virus.”

In addition, San Bernardino County Department of Public Health (DPH) will continue to provide updates and work with local healthcare providers as the situation evolves. DPH has been in communication with Riverside County and offered resources and support should they be needed.

“Our department is committed and prepared to protect our citizens and our communities,” stated Trudy Raymundo, Director of San Bernardino County Department of Public Health. “We will continue to work with local, state and federal partners to ensure that we are prepared and coordinated as the situation develops. Our utmost importance is to continue to protect public health.”

Additional questions about the screening process should be directed to the CDC. Additional information can be found though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or California Department of Public Health (CDPH) pages. Information is available in English and Chinese.


Published January 29, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | Leave a comment | Number of Views (30)



U.S. Citizen Repatriation from China

NEWS UPDATE – San Bernardino County along with the City of Ontario, Ontario International Airport, state and federal partners stood ready to provide a safe and welcoming landing for American diplomats and U.S. citizens returning from China. Late Tuesday evening, the Centers for Disease Control announced the flight scheduled to land at Ontario International Airport would be diverted to March Air Reserve Base in Riverside County.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the passengers were screened before they took off; monitored during the duration of the flight by medical personnel on board; screened again on landing to refuel in Anchorage, Alaska; monitored on the last leg of the flight by medical personnel on board; evaluated upon arrival at March Air Reserve Base; and then they will be monitored for symptoms post-arrival. For more information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control website linked here.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020 

The County has been notified by the State Office of Emergency Services that Ontario International Airport may serve as the repatriation point for up to 240 U.S. citizens, including nine children, arriving from the Wuhan region of China in a U.S. State Department-chartered aircraft.

County departments and personnel are working closely with our state, city, and ONT partners to prepare for this possible repatriation, focusing on ensuring the arriving citizens are free of any illness before clearing them to proceed to their respective U.S. destinations, and protecting the San Bernardino County community from the possibility of exposure to any contagions.

ONT was designated by the federal government as the official repatriation center for California about a decade ago, and various County departments have participated in numerous comprehensive repatriation exercises with state and federal agencies during the past several years to ensure the County and all other agencies are prepared for this type of event.

The occupants of the aircraft will consist entirely of U.S. State Department employees, U.S. contractors who have been working in China, and other U.S. citizens. The aircraft will first arrive in Alaska, where occupants will be examined by personnel from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. No occupants who present symptoms of illness will be allowed to proceed into the continental United States. Upon arrival in the continental U.S., possibly ONT, aircraft occupants will again be screened by CDC personnel and monitored for up to two weeks.

Highly trained professionals from the County Department of Public Health, County Office of Emergency Services, and other County departments are establishing a reception area and temporary living quarters in a space at ONT far removed from the passenger terminals and other public areas. Ontario police and other public safety personnel are prepared to ensure no unauthorized persons enter or exit the area.

ONT will proceed under normal operations during this period.

The safety and security of the people of San Bernardino County and all of Southern California is the utmost priority for the County and its partners. All necessary steps will be taken to minimize any risk to our communities.

More information can be found at www.flyontario.com.


Published January 28, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | 4 Comments | Number of Views (33)



County monitoring Novel Coronavirus; reports no local cases

The San Bernardino County Department of Public Health (DPH) is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to respond to recent reports of a novel (new) coronavirus. No cases have been reported in San Bernardino County.

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that circulate mostly among animals, including camels, cats and bats. Common symptoms in an infected human include a fever, cough and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

“There have been no confirmed coronavirus cases in San Bernardino County to date,” states Dr. Erin Gustafson, San Bernardino County Assistant Health Officer. “DPH will keep citizens informed as more information about the coronavirus is made available. At this time, we urge the public to remain calm, as it is very unlikely to be at risk of contracting the virus.”

As with any virus, especially during the flu season, there are a number of steps you can take to protect your health and those around you:

  • Washing hands with soap and water.
  • Avoiding touching eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick are all ways to reduce the risk of infection with a number of different viruses.
  • If someone does become sick with respiratory symptoms like fever and cough, they should stay away from work, school or other people to avoid spreading illness.

Since December 2019, Chinese authorities have identified hundreds of cases associated with this novel coronavirus in an outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China.

CDPH has been informed that one individual in Los Angeles County and one individual in Orange County have tested positive for novel coronavirus, which has been confirmed by Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH), the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA), and CDC.

The CDC confirmed the first case in the U.S. on Jan. 21, a Washington State man who had returned to the U.S from Wuhan on Jan. 15. On Jan. 24, the CDC confirmed a second U.S. case in a traveler who returned to Chicago from Wuhan on Jan. 13.

While there is no cure for this virus, our hospital partners and clinical providers will be able to test and care for ill travelers effectively to minimize transmission and severe illness. DPH will continue to provide updates and work with local healthcare providers as the situation evolves.

DPH urges individuals who have recently traveled to Wuhan City and who develop fever or respiratory symptoms, to contact their healthcare provider by phone. DPH requests that healthcare providers treating patients with respiratory symptoms ask these patients about their travel history to Wuhan, China and to report suspected novel coronavirus infections to DPH.

Additional questions about the screening process should be directed to the CDC. Additional information can be found though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or California Department of Public Health (CDPH) pages. Information is available in English and Chinese.


Published January 28, 2020 | By County of San Bernardino | Leave a comment | Number of Views (36)





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