May 26 coronavirus roundup for San Benito County

Seventy-six people have tested positive since February, 12 active, 62 recovered; Pinnacles open to foot traffic and bicycles, vehicles not allowed except for campers with reservations; Chamber of Commerce to host May 28 business webinar.

With everything happening with the coronavirus pandemic, we at BenitoLink want to provide a roundup of recent articles, as well as closures and cancellations happening in San Benito County.

As of 3:16 p.m. on May 26, 76 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in San Benito County since February. Twelve of these are active, 62 have recovered, and two have died. For the most updated information, visit the San Benito County COVID-19 Dashboard.

Information courtesy of San Benito County Public Health Services.
Information courtesy of San Benito County Public Health Services.
Information courtesy of San Benito County Public Health Services.
Information courtesy of San Benito County Public Health Services.

Recent Articles

Gig workers soldier on during pandemic—An Instacart shopper and DoorDash delivery driver share their food-handling experiences.

Places of worship and in-store retail can now open with modifications—Under new guidance, places of worship can hold religious services and funerals that limit attendance to 25% building capacity upon approval by San Benito County Public Health Services.

Hair salons and barbershops allowed to reopen—Permitted activities include services that can be provided with both the worker and customer wearing face coverings throughout the service.

Caregiving in the time of coronavirus—Three caregivers talk about how they protect clients and themselves.


-On May 22, the San Benito County Office of Education issued an update regarding the state budget, funding and reopening. It read in part:

“The release of Governor Gavin Newsom’s May Budget Revision on May 14 reflected California’s $54 billion budget deficit, resulting in a 10 percent cut to the Local Control Funding Formula, a $19 billion decline in Proposition 98 and other reductions in education spending. As we look at developing plans to possibly open schools in the fall, fiscal implications must be considered. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused tremendous disruption for our K-12 public education system. As our districts, charter school and the San Benito County Office of Education (SBCOE) prepare to re-open safely in the fall, significant resources will be needed. Social distancing will require smaller class sizes. Implementing new guidelines such as wellness/temperature checks, required face coverings and properly disinfecting schools and maintaining safe learning environments will be our top priority for students, staff, and parents. For more information please visit the Center for Disease Control webpage that provided guidance for schools to reopen, ‘Considerations for Schools.’ All these efforts will require additional funds.”

To read full update, see attached PDF.

-San Benito High School will hold small, in-person graduations. Events will take place over four days, from June 1 to June 4. Sixty students will receive diplomas at each event, and each student is allowed to have two parents attend with them. Face coverings required.


-On May 25, the California Department of Public Health said places of worship for religious services and in-store retail shopping can start reopening statewide. Modifications are required to keep Californians safe and limit the spread of COVID-19.

Subject to approval by county public health departments, all retail stores can reopen for in-store shopping under previously issued guidelines. Under new guidance, places of worship can hold religious services and funerals that limit attendance to 25% of a building’s capacity—or up to 100 attendees, whichever is lower—upon approval by the county department of public health.

While the vast majority of large gatherings remain prohibited under the state’s stay-at-home order, the state health department has released guidelines for in-person protests and events designed for political expression.

See article above for more info.

-On May 26, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced reopening guidance for hair salons and barbershops at his noon press conference. A copy of the guidance can be found here: Hair Salons and Barbershops.

As San Benito County transitions further down the state’s resilience roadmap, there will be more announcements in the coming days from the Governor’s Office. According to a recent release, San Benito County can move forward with opening hair salons and barbershops immediately because the county qualified on May 13 for the local variance for the expansion of Phase 2.

See article above for more info.

-Pinnacles National Park is open to foot traffic and bicycles. Vehicles are not allowed into the park except for campers with reservations. Parking lots remain closed.


The San Benito County Chamber of Commerce will host a May 28 webinar at 10 a.m. about reopening businesses, followed by a live question and answer session.


-The State has several hotlines for residents to call for suicide prevention, abuse, and mental health.

Link to resources

-The Division of Occupational Safety and Health, better known as Cal/OSHA, helps protect workers from health and safety hazards in almost every workplace in California.

Visit Cal/OSHA for information about workplace safety and health.

File a confidential workplace safety complaint.

File a whistleblower complaint if you suffer retaliation for reporting a workplace safety hazard

Obtain free consultation services

Contact Cal/OSHA at (844) 522-6734.

 State and federal elected officials’ COVID-19 web pages:


San Benito County Health and Human Services Agency/Coronavirus


Meals for seniors

Food Distribution Community Food Bank

Drive-thru service at the marketplace Fridays and Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at 1133 San Felipe Rd. Hollister.

Sign-ups for supplemental food are done by phone 831-637-0340

Food Distribution Salvation Army

Drive-thru service Tuesdays at 11 a.m. at 910 Buena Vista Rd. Hollister

Sign-ups not required

To schedule delivery call 310-753-6520

Public Assistance CalFresh/Medi-Cal/Cash Aid/GA

apply online at


Unemployment Insurance Benefits Employment Development Department

apply online at


Senior Services Delivery of essential items and food city of Hollister and Jovenes de Antano


Disability/Paid Family Leave Employment Development Department

apply online at


United Way of San Benito County 2-1-1 Text your Zip Code to 831-898-211 or call 211 Text COVID2019 to 211211

Tips for avoiding COVID-19                      

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
  • Keep a minimum of a six feet physical distance from others.
  • Avoid people who are sick.
  • Stay at home. Only leave to take care of essential errands.
  • Cover your cough and sneeze.
  • Cover your face (mouth and nose) with protective covering when in public
  • Disinfect frequently touched objects.
  • If you think you might be infected call your health care professional and follow their directions.


BenitoLink is a nonprofit news website that reports on San Benito County. Our team is working around the clock during this time when accurate information is essential. It is expensive to produce local news and community support is what keeps the news flowing. Please consider supporting BenitoLink, San Benito County’s news.


BenitoLink Staff