State may send Pierce County back to Phase 2
I am not one who finds joy in being the bearer of bad news, but this week Gov. Jay Inslee and his state Department of Health officials announced that they determined Pierce County to be one of a handful of counties that could be moved back a step on the state’s “Roadmap to Recovery” plan.
His plan puts counties in reopening phases based on COVID-19 case rates and hospitalizations. According to their methodology, Pierce County’s rates are higher than the current Phase 3 standards. According to the state’s numbers, Pierce County sits at 238 cases per 100,000 residents. Our health department lists our case numbers at 197.
To remain in Phase 3, the average cases per 100,000 must be below 200 over a two-week period. Hospitalizations must be at or below five per 100,000 over seven days. I am told our numbers currently exceed this. This World-O-Meter site has some interesting information.
On Monday, health officials are expected to review the latest numbers and decide whether to move our county and others back a phase. If that happens, the change will take effect Friday, April 16.
If you would like to send a message to the state’s department of health, click here.
Rural Business and Farm Opportunities
Hoping the information below will be useful to you or someone you know!
1. WSDA is providing COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Grants for the following types of businesses: Shellfish growers; Farmers Market Organizations; Agritourism Farms; and Small Breweries, Wineries, Cideries & Distilleries. These grants are part of a relief package co-sponsored with the WA State Department of Commerce, and they will provide up to $15,000 to approved applicants. The application deadline is April 26!
2. The Pierce Conservation District is conducting a Farm Drainage Survey as part of their work with the Floodplains for the Future partnership. The survey results are going to help the groups supporting farm-centric projects better understand drainage issues in the Puyallup watershed and throughout Pierce County. The survey will close April 30. The Agricultural Drainage Task Force will also use the data as it finalizes its findings for the Pierce County Council later this spring.
3. There are two upcoming pasture management workshops being hosted by the Pierce Conservation District. A virtual workshop on organic amendments and fertilization will be held April 15, and a field tour to discuss pasture optimization and weed control will be hosted on May 25. Please visit (and bookmark!) their Farm Events and Workshops page to learn more.
We have some beautiful weather on the horizon. Be sure to get out for some Vitamin D!
Grateful for you!