The County Administrative Center in downtown Riverside and other county buildings will close to the public starting next week, officials said Wednesday, citing an uptick in coronavirus infections and a spike in hospitalizations associated with COVID-19.
“Virtual methods have been long-standing and efficient ways to conduct business with the county. As one of the largest employers in the area, the county family is dedicated to providing high-quality services in a safe manner for our employees and visitors,” County Executive Officer George Johnson said.
“Departments have diligently worked to add these safeguards to workspaces, including providing more telecommuting options. Returning to virtual means is one way the county is slowing the spread of the disease,” he said.
The County Administrative Center will be closed to public access for an unspecified period starting Monday, along several other county buildings, which officials did not immediately identify. County services will still be available for residents over the phone or online.
Essential facilities providing health services, public safety services, as well as cooling centers, will continue to be open. County libraries will continue to offer curb-side services.
The latest closure announcement comes a week and a half after the County Administrative Center partially closed at the end of June — a week after fully reopening — due to several confirmed coronavirus infections in the building.
Because of a public health order, the CAC had been mostly closed to the public between March 18 and June 15, when all offices were reopened to the public.
Some county employees will work from home, or if necessary, continue working in the office while maintaining social distance from other co-workers and wearing face coverings, officials said. When employees arrive at work, they will be screened for coronavirus symptoms.
Meetings of the Board of Supervisors will continue to operate exclusively online, with only the supervisors, Executive Office staff and a limited number of other employees permitted in the first-floor chamber.
Public participation is available by telephone, but parties are required to submit speaker requests 24 hours in advance by registering at www.rivcocob.org/comments.
The board’s online broadcast is accessible via livestream.com/rivcolive or www.facebook.com/RivCoCOB/.