On Wednesday, I wrote to announce a series of eight public meetings where I could answer questions about the recent legislative session. In just a few days, our health environment has changed.
Communicating, listening to, being available, and answering questions for the people I represent are paramount to me. But more important is protecting your health and well-being.
Governor Brown has asked that we suspend public gatherings of more than ten people, especially if participants are over age 60. There are no confirmed Coronavirus cases in our district – yet. But to be prudent and cautious, I am cancelling our Town Halls and will re-schedule as soon as appropriate. As always, I’m happy to hear from you by email and will answer your questions there.
By now you are certainly aware of the quickly evolving public health situation. Do not panic! The majority of Coronavirus cases are mild with symptoms similar to the common cold. Should you begin to feel unwell, call your primary care provider right away.
All of us are quickly learning how to deal with this new challenge. We each need to act responsibly to protect our family and community.
- Limit personal contact. No hand shaking. Keep a polite distance from co-workers or customers. Avoid gatherings.
- Practice good personal hygiene. Cover your cough. Use sanitizer. Wash your hands frequently. Try not to touch your face often.
- If you feel sick, stay home! If you need to see a doctor, call first. Get instructions. Going to a clinic or emergency room could infect others.
Questions? Dial 211. 211 Info, the statewide social and community services information and referral phone line, has partnered with the Oregon Health Association to provide an information hotline for Oregonians looking for additional information on Coronavirus. The phone line is available 7 days a week from 8 am to 11 pm if you want to speak to a Community Information Specialist.
About eight out of 10 of those who are infected will have mild symptoms. The best step for those individuals is to stay home, health authorities report. “The vast majority will recover without needing intervention,” according to Dr. Dean Sidelinger, state health officer.
Our goal is to protect the elderly and those with underlying health conditions who are most susceptible to the virus.
I’m also concerned about the economic consequences of Coronavirus for our Coastal and Coast Range businesses.
“The more it spreads in the U.S., the higher is the potential ultimately to be some sort of recession catalyst, a coordinating event where everyone gets scared and pessimistic at the same time due to the uncertainty of the nature of the disease,” said state economist Josh Lehner, “where everyone pulls back and they don’t go out to eat, they don’t go to the movie theaters or do this other sort of stuff and so consumer spending overall drops.”
Please remember to support our local, small businesses and the people who work for them. One suggestion is to buy gift certificates now so that our businesses can stay viable. They can keep the lights on and you can celebrate when this all passes.
My staff and I are receiving daily briefings. And while the legislature has adjourned, I serve on the Emergency Board where funds have been allocated for Corona Response.
A new Special Joint Committee on Coronavirus Response has been appointed by legislative leadership. (They will hold virtual meetings.) The committee will “identify actions to support short-term economic relief to low-income workers and small businesses.” The committee also will make budget recommendations and suggest changes to Oregon law that might be needed “to assist with the public health emergency.”
Hopefully we’ll be able to gather again before too long. In the meantime, please stay safe, wash your hands, and take care of each other.
Oregon State Representative David Gomberg will be holding a series of town halls in March and April where the public is invited to share concerns, ask questions and review the recently concluded legislative session.
“I try to get to every corner of our sprawling district regularly,” Gomberg said in a recent newsletter. “Interacting with constituents like you is the best part of my work as a local legislator.”
The town hall schedule is as follows:
Waldport Chamber of Commerce
Thursday, March 12
Waldport Community Center
265 NW Hemlock (Hwy 34), Waldport, OR 97394
Mid Lincoln County Town Hall
Saturday March 21
Newport Library, McEntee Meeting Room
35 NW Nye St, Newport, OR 97365
Southern Tillamook County Town Hall
Saturday March 28
Kiawanda Community Center, Faye Jensen Hall
34600 Cape Kiwanda Dr, Pacific City, OR 97135
North Lincoln County Town Hall
Saturday March 28
Driftwood Library Community Room
801 SW Hwy 101 Ste 201, Lincoln City, OR 97367
Western Polk County Town Hall
Sunday March 29
Falls City Community Center
320 North Main Street, Falls City, Oregon 97344
Western Yamhill County Town Hall
Saturday April 4
Sheridan Public Library Public Meeting Room
142 NW Yamhill St, Sheridan, OR 97378
Lincoln City Kiwanis Club
Thursday April 30
Ace’s Bar and Grill
3309 NE Clubhouse Drive, Lincoln City. OR 97367
Toledo Chamber of Commerce
Thursday April 16
123 SE Alder St, Toledo, OR
David Gomberg is an Oregon small business owner, kite flier, and a Democratic member of the Oregon House of Representatives representing District 10 since January 14, 2013. Wikipedia