Westminster

Westminster’s response to virus

THE CORONAVIRUS (officially known as COVID-19) is causing the cancellation or postponement of many events across the nation, and is sending the stock market reeling (Shutterstock).

The City of Westminster has issued this update about its response to the coronavirus crisis:

Across the nation and around the world, communities are facing a public health crisis that continues to evolve rapidly related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). City of Westminster officials and City Council have been actively monitoring the situation, and have diligently implemented precautionary measures as needed with the health and safety of this community in mind. In order to reduce the potential exposure and spread of COVID-19 to the residents and City employees, the City is taking further action to practice and promote responsible social distancing.

Starting Monday, March 16, there will be temporary closures to all city buildings and facilities and operational changes to various City services through the end of March or until further notice. Essential and emergency services will remain unaffected.

While there are no COVID-19 cases confirmed in Westminster, we must be proactive as a community to protect our safety and welfare, and this includes limiting access to City Hall and other City facilities. During this time, city staff will continue to provide services either electronically or via telephone. Bilingual Vietnamese and Spanish-speaking staff will also be available to provide assistance.

Additionally, the city will suspend penalties and interest for late payments of utilities and parking citations, and business license fees that are incurred beginning March 16 and through the end of March. The City will also refund park fees or other City fees for canceled events at City facilities that take place in March.

The following is a comprehensive list of the operational changes:

City Hall, Corporation Yard, and City Services:

  • City Hall lobby will be closed to the public through March 31 or until further notice. Residents are asked to call individual departments for assistance or (714) 898-3311 to be directed to the appropriate department.
  • Services requiring in-person visits or public service counter assistance will be suspended or made available via phone, online, or through email, including, but not limited to:

o   Building permits

o   Business licensing

o   Water bill payments

o   Claims for damages

  • Building inspection services will continue until further notice.
  • Process servers for delivery of subpoenas and summons are asked to call (714) 548-3237.
  • The Corporation Yard located at 14381 Olive St. will be closed to the public.

o   For assistance, call (714) 895-2876.

o   To report a maintenance issue, use the My Westminster mobile application, available for iPhone or Android.

  • Staff will provide updates as they are available on the city’s dedicated coronavirus webpage.

Community Services and Recreation:

  • Community Services Building will be closed.
  • The Senior Center will be closed, but will continue to operate the Congregate and Home Delivered Meal programs.  The Congregate Meal Program will be transitioning to frozen meals on Thursday, March 19, 2020.  Staff will be available to communicate via phone or email with seniors in need of services.
  • The following programs have been suspended through at least the end of March:
    • Project S.H.U.E.
    • Youth Sports Programs
    • Parks and Playgrounds Programs at Bolsa Chica Park, Liberty and Sigler Parks
    • Westminster Nursery School
    • In-Person Westminster Family Resource Center (WFRC) Services. Limited services can be provided via phone or email consultation. For details, please call the WFRC at (714) 903-1331.
  • Facility reservations will not be taken during this time.

Police Department and Animal Control Services:

  • The front lobby of the police department will be closed to the public through March 27. All residents are encouraged to call the general phone line at (714) 898-3315 for instructions on how to manage police business.
  • There will be no change to emergency calls for service or essential services.
  • Animal Control will remain open and officers will respond based on public safety and health priority.
  • Dog license applications or renewals can be processed online.

Financial Assistance:

  • City will suspend penalties and interest for late payments of utilities and parking citations, and business license fees that are incurred beginning March 16 and through the end of March.
  • City will also refund park fees or other city fees for canceled events at city facilities that take place in March.

City Meetings:

  • All commission, board, and task force meetings through the end of March will be canceled, postponed, or conducted via teleconference. Please refer to the City’s webpage for public notices of meetings.
  • The City Council special meeting/study session of March 25, 2020 has been canceled.

Although these changes to city operations are unprecedented in our city, they are necessary.  I am confident city staff will continue to provide you with the highest level of service regardless of the difficult times we are in. I ask for your patience and cooperation as staff transitions and adjusts the services to meet your needs.

Together, let’s commit to staying safe and healthy. Thank you.

Mayor Tri Ta

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