Thursday, May 23, 2024

Reopening Lincoln County

Lincoln County, along with community partners has begun working on a local plan to reopen local business and recreation that will follow Governor Brown’s Reopening Oregon Framework.  The plan will be developed in a way that makes sense for Lincoln County and submitted to the Governor for her approval.

The Governor has provided draft guidance on how counties will reopen.  She stated today that some counties may be able to enter Phase 1 on May 15.  Most business closures were a result of state orders, not county or city ones. Thus, it is the state that has to lift those orders so that most businesses can reopen.

The current draft guidance provided by the state requires that counties meet seven prerequisites before a county can enter phase one of Reopening Oregon. Lincoln County and its partners are working on ensuring we will be able to meet these gating criteria. These criteria are:

  1. Declining prevalence of COVID-19: This metric only applies to counties with more than 5 cases.  Lincoln County currently has 5 total cases, but only 2 active cases.  If we increase our case count, we will need to verify:
    1. The percentage of emergency department visits for COVID-19-like illnesses (CLI) are less than the historic average for flu at the same time of year.
  2. Minimum Testing Regimen: Regions must be able to administer COVID-19 testing at a rate of 30 per 10,000 people per week. In Lincoln County this would be approximately 150 tests per week. Our local healthcare system is able to do that now.  However, this metric is measured at the Health Region level, not at the county level. An individual county cannot move into phase one if regional hospital capacity is beneath that level.  Lincoln County is in Region 2 and includes, Yamhill, Polk, Lincoln, Benton, Marion and Linn counties.  The region is meeting Monday to plan for this requirement.
    1. In Lincoln County, Samaritan Health Services has expanded their testing capability to test all symptomatic patients with doctor’s orders at the Depoe Bay or Waldport sites. We are testing asymptomatic people working in congregate care settings and their families.
  3. Contact Tracing System: Counties must have a minimum of 15 contact tracers for every 100,000 people.
    1. Lincoln County has met this requirement. Public Health has expanded training to additional public health staff and have begun taking names of volunteers for future training if needed. Also, the State of Oregon has committed to training 600 additional people to meet surge demand in counties.
  4. Isolation Facilities: Counties must have hotel rooms available for people who test positive for COVID-19 and who cannot self-isolate.
    1. Lincoln County has already been working on developing a solution for this but does not have this plan finalized yet.
  5. Finalized Statewide Sector Guidelines: Each sector must adhere to Oregon Health Authority statewide guidelines to protect employees and consumers, make the physical workspace safer and implement processes that lower risk of infection in the business.
    1. These guidelines are being finalized by the State and will be posted on Lincoln County’s website.
  6. Sufficient Health Care Capacity: Each region must be able to accommodate a 20% increase in suspected or confirmed COVID-19 hospitalizations compared to the number of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 hospitalizations in the region at the time Executive Order No. 20-22 was issued.
    1. This metric is measured at the Health Region level, not at the county level. An individual county cannot move into phase one if regional hospital capacity is beneath that level.
  7. Sufficient PPE Supply: All hospitals in the health region must report PPE supply daily to OHA’s Hospital Capacity system. Large hospitals and health systems in the region must attest to a 30-day supply of PPE, and rural hospitals must have a 14-day supply. This metric is measured at the Health Region level, not at the county level.
    1. Counties must attest to sufficient PPE supply for first responders in the county. The Lincoln County incident management team has already set up distribution systems to long-term care, foster homes, jails and other facilities. A sterilizing machine will be ready next week in Eugene to clean N-95 masks. This benchmark is dependent upon stockpiling PPE.

For more information on Lincoln County’s ongoing reopening plans, go to

News Release
News Release
This information was provided for dissemination to our readers via an outside agency.


  1. Can you even find the govenor. Dont wait for “MOTHER MAY I” submit the plan that works for Lincoln an open up according to your plan. There is no way that all Portland’s plans would work for us. Minimal infections counties need to get together and open those counties together. The people in the county who wish to continue lock down may do so in their own home. Forget the address phone and names for resturants. Talk about invasion of privacy . Any hotel that opens temp before registration, if that is the be all end all. We need to stop being the govenor guinea pig.

  2. Great job explaining the factors the influence your dissisions. Thank you. As a long time business owner in Lincoln county I look forward to the earliest date of reopening possible when safety is achieved. This kinda sucks.

  3. Sounds like a smart plan. Business owners need to know there is light at the end of this. People staying smart then we can achieve this quicker.
    For all its worth it will be years before I feel comfortable in a restaurant or large event.

  4. There is no sane reason for allowing the big chain stores to remain open doing a booming business, but not allow local, small businesses to be open. You are killing them and it’s totally unreasonable. This was never done in a manner using common sense. The governor wanted to look good to the federal government by these unreasonable restrictions. This is not New York. Closing parks and trails but allowing us to all go to Wal-Mart and Dollar Tree makes no senses at all. Open up and trust people to be responsible citizens.

  5. Hi Steve and John,
    Hey Steve, Lincoln County has never been threatened; you were more than safe three weeks ago. REALLY, you must not give a darn about your business. You know what really sucks? We may loose many businesses.

    Hey John, There is nothing smart about what is taking place. As time marches on, the light at the end of the tunnel is dimming. You know why? TIME IS THE ENEMY OF THE RECOVERY. PEOPLE AND BUSINESSES ARE RUNNING OUT OF MONEY. NO…. MONEY, SLOW,SLOW, SLOW, SLOW, SLOW MAYBE NO… RECOVERY. Yikes John, nothing to fear but fear itself. You got to eat sometime. Maybe we can go to a BLAZER GAME together.

    A Lincoln City resident who has been supporting local restaurants. I’m not sick yet.

  6. Oregon has fear mongering politicians who need to be spanked!!! OPEN OUR BUSINESSES !!!!! OPEN OUR STATE!!! Replace these corrupt officials come election time!! VOTE OUT THE EVIL!!!!

  7. As a hospitality worker for well over 20 years, and being a bit long in the tooth myself, I can’t help but be dismayed at the selfishness and lack of maturity in some of the responses. For those of you who chafe at the burdens this tragic period in our history, but do so from the comforts and relative safety of their homes without acknowledging in any way the lives saved by restricting travel and commerce in our area, I say; shame on you. We have made these sacrifices together to safeguard the well-being of the very people you see everyday, because that’s what decent human beings do. And yes being out of work, isolated, and frustrated, can wear on us, but we bear it for no other reason than to help those health professionals trying to save us. I salute them, and everyone else called to perform during this arduous time. I feel fortunate to be in a location so lightly touched by this scourge, and the lucky should never whine.

  8. Go ahead and reopen to the mindless masses from Portland. Learn the hard way. Be sure to reopen the casino, too. It attracts the most wonderful people to our county.

  9. Here in Lincoln City, I see the food service taking a hit, we’ve been
    eating takeout and trying new places, many of the normal places we shop
    are still open. Tourist based business are taking the worst, gift shops, motels, I couldn’t care less about vrds though.
    I own a business as a tradesperson, and haven’t been affected, at least as
    far as I can tell, other trades are still working.
    Mindless masses.. yes, although the casino was the first to shut down.
    We are relatively safe here, save for those masses, and that’s what people are concerned about. The last time I was in the hospital I was diagnosed with emphysema, and my last visit there was to watch my father pass away, neither my Mom or myself have any desire to visit it
    again anytime soon. Complain away, but the reality is that you’re going to have to make the best of it until things change, and “normal”- that may never come back 100%, and that’s what you should be thinking about. Just like the internet changed the way people shop, this is going
    to change people as well.

  10. That’s why Lincoln County has extended ban on vacation rentals till May 31 so much for the people’s Coast it’s now the fear mongering politicians coast. Lincoln county has all of 5 positive test results.

  11. Why not open the casinos that is where a lot of tax money comes from
    to pay all the people who cannot work or won’t so they can sit at home and drink their heavily taxed booze, smoke their heavily taxed ciggarettes and smoke their heavily taxed legal drugs the states made legal. I know lets judge each other and decide which is less evil because we have nothing better to do right now but shelter in place? Put on your mask stay at home and shelter in fear I want to go to the casino, ye ha mthfkrs.


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