Breed proposes $62 million relief plan for those hurting from pandemic

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) - COVID cases and hospitalizations continue to surge in San Francisco, with an average of 280 new COVID cases a day.

But there is some positive news...

"While our cases are higher than ever, the rate of increase isn't as severe as after Thanksgiving. This is good news, and hopefully, it means people are following the health orders," said San Francisco Mayor London Breed.

Still, city officials believe the state mandated stay-at-home order tied to the regions ICU capacity will remain in place at least through the end of the month.

To help out struggling businesses, the Mayor has proposed a new $62 million dollar relief plan.

"This new plan will more than triple the amount of local support we have provided in grants and loans so far during this pandemic," Breed said.

For small businesses like three babes bakeshop in the Bayview, which lost 80% of its business and had to layoff 3/4 of its staff, it will mean a lot.

"This will certainly help us to maintain our staff, we can offer benefits to people, it probably going to go straight to payroll first," said Three Babes Bakeshop owner Lenore Estrada.

On the vaccine front, residents of 13 of 18 skilled nursing facilities including Laguna Honda have been offered their first dose of vaccine.

And those 65 and older who are in the city's health network will begin to be offered the vaccine.

In the meantime, the city is taking steps to expand the distribution of the vaccine through community clinics and large sites once they get more supply from the state.

"In partnership with the health department, the city's COVID Command Center and Department of Emergency Management Director are identifying civic facilities across the city including specifically in neighborhoods with those with highly impacted communities that can serve as high volume vaccination sites for our health care providers," said Dr. Grant Colfax.

The health director also reminds us, the vaccine will not get us out of the current surge that will require more masking, wearing social distancing, and not gathering with those outside our household.

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