On August 31, 2020, the State of California implemented a Color Tier System to help track the loosening and tightening of restrictions by County. Counties are assigned to a Color Tier by COVID-19 risk level. As of April 7, 2021, Sonoma County is in the Orange Tier for Moderate in California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy. The following has changed:
Opening Up for Outdoor Operations:
Opening Up for Indoor Operations:
How do I determine capacity?
To determine capacity as outlined in the Activity and Business Tiers Matrix based on the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, use the posted fire maximum capacity limit and ensure there is enough spacing for individuals from different households to maintain social distancing. If there is no posted fire maximum capacity limit, contact your local fire protection district.
What is the capacity at weddings and funerals in the red, orange, and yellow tier?
It is important to note there is a difference between ceremonies and gatherings defined by the State. Wedding and funeral ceremonies must comply with Places of Worship Guidance while gatherings (i.e., wedding receptions, funeral receptions) must comply with the State’s small private gathering guidance and restrictions. It is also important to note there are special restrictions for singing, chanting, and similar activities in both the Places of Worship Guidance and the small private gathering guidance and restrictions.
As of March 14th, the capacity limits for CEREMONIES such as weddings and funerals are:
- Purple Tier:
- Red Tier:
- Orange Tier:
- Yellow Tier:
As of March 14th, the capacity limits for GATHERINGS such as wedding receptions and funeral receptions are:
- Purple Tier:
- Outdoor gatherings are permitted for up to three households, including host and guests.
- Red, Orange, and Yellow Tiers:
- Outdoor and indoor gatherings are permitted for up to three households, including host and guests. Indoor receptions are strongly discouraged.
How far can people travel to an event?
As of March 14th, there is a 150-mile restriction to travel to an event. For updated travel advisory information, see California Department of Public Health’s Travel Advisory.
Is there an organization that helps to strategize the recovery efforts for small businesses moving forward?
The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors adopted the Sonoma County Economic Recovery Action Plan to support economic and community resiliency and recovery from COVID-19 and natural disasters. Compiled by the Economic Development Board (EDB) and County Administrator’s Office (CAO) using a Whole Community approach and feedback from over 500 community members, the Economic Recovery Action Plan includes 13 key strategies. These short to long term economic strategies focus on;
- Business Recovery
- Workforce Recovery
- Community Recovery
Economic Recovery Action Plan (PDF: 12,657 KB)
Interested in getting involved? Email EconRecovery@sonoma-county.org.
Can I still use an outdoor heater in a tent or temporary structure?
Can I use my parklet or outdoor dining in addition to inside dining capacity limits?
When inside dining resumes, will bar seating be allowed?
Bar seating is not allowed where customers and/or groups “cannot maintain at least six feet of distance from work areas/stations." See California Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Industry Guidance: Restaurants.
Can there be live entertainment at wineries, breweries, restaurants?
Where indoor operations are permitted in the red tier, indoor performances are governed by California Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Industry Guidance: Restaurants. As of March 14th, performers must wear face coverings at all times and maintain physical distancing from spectators. Performers are counted toward the occupancy capacity limits. Further live performance guidance is expected in the near future.
Where only outdoor operations are permitted for wineries, breweries, and distilleries not providing a meal, only outdoor live entertainment operations are permitted with modifications. See page 3 of COVID-19 Industry Guidance: Wineries and Tasting Rooms for guidance and modifications
What are the best practices to advance to the next tiers?
The best business practices for a safer, healthier community are outlined at California Department of Public Health’s Industry guidance to reduce risk. They include guidance for how to protect your workers, ventilation, and specific industry guidance. Sonoma County Health officials are also encouraging all Sonoma County residents to get vaccinated when it’s their turn, and follow proven safety protocol until then, including regular COVID testing, masking, social distancing, and refraining from gathering in groups of more than 3 households.
How often should employees that serve the general public get tested?
Sonoma County health officials are recommending that people who regularly interact with the public get tested twice per month.
What is the current guidance about air purification systems for indoor spaces?
Locate the status of State allowed industry activity by County on the State's COVID-19 website. For County allowed industry activity go to " What's Open in Sonoma County." For businesses located in an incorporated city, check with city for compliance guidelines and permits needed for reopening and expanding services.
For information on State requirements for advancing counties to the next tier, visit California Department of Public Health Tier Frame work website.
Understand which activities and businesses are open in the four tiers
Guidance for Color Tier System (PDF)