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Napa County offers email tip line to ensure business compliance with stay-at-home order

Napa County offers email tip line to ensure business compliance with stay-at-home order

From the Complete coronavirus coverage from the Napa Valley Register, St. Helena Star, and The Weekly Calistogan series

Napa County residents can use a new email address to inform authorities of businesses that stay open despite a statewide stay-home directive, the sheriff's office announced Monday afternoon.

The address, covid19compliance@countyofnapa.org, will be the county's inbox for tips about businesses outside of “essential” categories remaining open, or not maintaining a 6-foot distance between occupants to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, according to Sheriff John Robertson, who introduced the tip line during a Facebook live chat.

The county will first contact businesses by telephone, then visit the property to inform owners and managers about the terms of the shelter-at-home directive, Robertson said after the announcement. Failure to comply may then lead to a citation or suspension of a business license by the local authority, either the county or one of its five cities.

Robertson also announced the creation of a task force comprising the Sheriff's Office, city police departments and the county District Attorney's office to ensure business compliance with the sheltering order.

Under directives by the county and Gov. Gavin Newsom that took effect early Friday, county residents are to stay at their homes except to buy groceries and get medical care, although they are allowed to go outside for exercise if they keep at least 6 feet from others. Businesses allowed to stay open include groceries, gas stations and other enterprises necessary for health and safety.

The email account is meant to give residents a quicker way to report their concerns without overloading dispatch call centers with non-emergency inquiries, as well as persuade business owners to follow the emergency order more closely, according to Robertson.

“It's usually a misunderstanding,” he said of such visits to businesses. “People have been very cooperative when we've asked them to change their practices or use social distancing.”

Editor's note: Because of the health implications of the COVID-19 virus, this article is being made available free to all online readers. If you'd like to join us in supporting the mission of local journalism, please visit napavalleyregister.com/members/join/.

Complete coronavirus coverage from the Napa Valley Register, St. Helena Star, and The Weekly Calistogan

This webpage contains all Napa County coronavirus coverage as featured in the Napa Valley Register, St. Helena Star and The Weekly Calistogan. This page will be updated several times a day as news comes in. Please bookmark this page to stay on top of local developments.

You can reach Howard Yune at 707-256-2214 or hyune@napanews.com

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Public Safety Reporter

Howard Yune covers public safety for the Napa Valley Register. He has been a reporter and photographer for the Register since 2011, and previously wrote for the Marysville Appeal-Democrat, Anaheim Bulletin and Coos Bay (Oregon) World.

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