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Baker County goes to lower risk Thursday

PRESS RELEASE

The Governor’s office announced Baker County is going to the lower risk category beginning Thursday, May 27. The county has been in the higher risk category since May 7.

The lower risk category allows eating and drinking establishments to increase occupancy to 50%, where currently in the higher risk category occupancy is limited to 25%. Indoor recreation and fitness establishments and indoor entertainment establishments are allowed to increase to 50% capacity as well.

County Commissioner Mark Bennett said, “We have been advocating with the Governor’s office to get back down to the lower risk category, and I’m so glad our businesses will begin Memorial Day weekend in the lowest risk category available.”

Specific guidance for each risk level is available on the Oregon Health Authority’s website.

Fifteenth COVID-19 related death reported

PRESS RELEASE

The Oregon Health Authority reported the fifteenth COVID-19 related death of a Baker County resident today, saying “Oregon’s 2,605th COVID-19 death is a 74-year-old man from Baker County who tested positive on May 3 and died on May 15 at St. Luke’s Boise Medical Center in Boise, ID. He had underlying conditions.”

County Commissioner Mark Bennett said, “I’m very sorry for his family and friends’ loss. Over a year into this pandemic, it hasn’t gotten any easier to receive a report like this. I ask that everyone stay aware that there are, and are going to continue to be, individuals who haven’t or can’t receive a vaccine. Thanks for everything you’ve done to protect our community, and please continue to make choices that protect each other.”

To protect the privacy and well-being of the family, and to maintain compliance with health information privacy regulations, no further information about the individual will be released by the County. We encourage everyone to be respectful as a family in our community grieves.

Baker County drops to high risk

PRESS RELEASE

The Governor’s office announced Baker County is dropping back to the high risk category beginning Friday, May 7. Baker County went into extreme risk on April 30.

The change came due to a drop in the statewide seven-day average increase for hospitalized COVID-19 positive patients, taking the average below 15 percent. This is one of the metrics used to determine if counties qualify for extreme risk.

Additionally, the Oregon Health Authority announced changes to the maximum capacities for Indoor Recreation/Fitness and Indoor Entertainment Establishments. Maximum occupancies will now be based on a percentage of “standard” occupancy depending on the county risk level. The maximum occupancy for both Indoor Recreation/Fitness and Indoor Entertainment
Establishments is now:

● High Risk: 10% of regular maximum occupancy or 50 people, whichever is larger
● Moderate Risk: 20% of regular maximum occupancy or 100 people, whichever is larger
● Lower Risk: max 50% of regular maximum occupancy

Specific guidance for each risk level is available on the Oregon Health Authority’s website.