Category Archives: San Marcos News

City of San Marcos enacts temporary eviction moratorium to assist residential and commercial tenants impacted by COVID-19

San Marcos, CA – On March 24, 2020, the San Marcos City Council took action to protect residential and commercial tenants from the possibility of eviction by reason of financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and approved a temporary moratorium against such evictions.

Here’s what that means for tenants and landlords:

For Tenants

If there has been a substantial decrease in your household or business income caused by layoffs or significantly reduced hours, or if you have incurred substantial out-of-pocket medical expenses, and if the decrease in income and/or the medical expenses were caused by the COVID- 19 outbreak, the Council’s action temporarily prohibits your landlord from filing or pursuing an eviction action.

This does not mean that you do not owe the rent to your landlord – it means that the rent will be deferred until after May 31, 2020. If your rental agreement provides for a late payment fee, that fee will still be owed to the landlord if you defer your rent payment.

What should you do if you are in this situation? Within 30 days of your rent being due, NOTIFY YOUR LANDLORD IN WRITING that you have suffered a substantial decrease in your household or your business income (whichever is applicable), and provide your landlord with documents that show your substantial decrease in income is due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

If your landlord has initiated or threatened such an action, and you can show that your inability to pay rent was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, please go to the City of San Marcos website (www.san-marcos.net) and click on the “Report A Concern” button, or select “Departments” and then “City Attorney,” and email the City Attorney from a link on that page. Your claim will be investigated and, if found to be substantiated, action will be taken against your landlord.

For Landlords

If you receive notice from a tenant that they have experienced a substantial decrease in their household or business income caused by layoffs or significantly reduced hours, or if they have incurred substantial out-of-pocket medical expenses, and if the substantial decrease in income and/or the medical expenses were caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, the Council’s action prohibits you from filing or pursuing an eviction action against that tenant until after May 31, 2020.

This does not mean that the rent is not owed to you – it means that the rent will be deferred until after May 31, 2020. If your rental agreement provides for a late payment fee, that fee will still be owed to you if your tenant defers their rent payment.

If your tenant provides you with notice within 30 days of their rent being due that they have suffered a substantial decrease in their household or their business income (whichever is applicable), and provide you with documents that show a substantial decrease in income is due to the COVID-19 outbreak, you are PRECLUDED from initiating or pursuing an eviction action against that tenant.

If the City learns that you have initiated such an eviction action and it is substantiated on review, you will be subjected to an enforcement action which will include the imposition of fines and orders. Please avoid this situation and work proactively with your tenants; in these difficult times it is important to work together to come to a mutually acceptable alternative payment schedule. If you have any questions, please go to the City of San Marcos website (www.san-marcos.net) and select “Departments” and then “City Attorney,” and email or call the City Attorney with the information provided on that page.

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San Marcos Creek Project Construction Begins this Week

Construction Begins on Critical Infrastructure Project with Crews Following State Health Protocols

San Marcos, CA—Construction on the $104M San Marcos Creek Project is set to begin this week, rain or shine, after needed equipment and materials have arrived on site. Barriers and construction signage will be installed along Discovery Street adjacent to the San Marcos Creek. This begins the first phase of construction for the two-year project and may cause traffic delays in the project area.

At the City of San Marcos, the health and safety of our community is our top priority. Amid the COVID- 19 outbreak and Governor Gavin Newsom’s “stay at home” order, project construction will proceed as project construction activities are exempt under the order. Here are the two sections in the order supporting this exemption:

  •   Emergency Services Sector: “Workers who support the operation, inspection, and maintenance of essential public works facilities and operations, including bridges, water and sewer main breaks, fleet maintenance personnel, construction of critical or strategic infrastructure, construction material suppliers, traffic signal maintenance, emergency location services for buried utilities, maintenance of digital systems infrastructure supporting public works operations, and other emergent issues”
  •   Other Community-Based Government Operations and Essential Functions: “Construction workers who support the construction, operation, inspection, and maintenance of construction sites and construction projects (including housing construction)”

    Given the importance of the project and its role in providing critical transportation infrastructure and relief from flooding, the City will continue with construction as planned.

    The Creek construction team is taking all recommended precautions to stay healthy and safe by following the guidance from public health officials, not gathering in groups larger than 10 people, practicing social distancing and frequent handwashing on the construction site.

Work This Week

The construction team will add signage and barriers at the following streets:

  • ●  Signage at the intersection of Bent Avenue and Creekside Drive and at the construction site’s

    entrance (430 Via Vera Cruz)

  • ●  Barriers along Discovery Street between Via Vera Cruz and Bent Avenue

    Upcoming Work

    In the following weeks, the construction team is expected to begin:

  • ●  Clearing non-native plants in the creek bed: While working on clearing the Creek bed and building the levee, road closures and detours are expected along Craven Road, Bent Avenue and Discovery Street.
  • ●  Building a levee adjacent to Discovery Street: A new temporary road will be created alongside Discovery Street, between Bent Avenue and Via Vera Cruz, to allow construction vehicles access to the Creek.
  • ●  Prepping Discovery Street for future widening
  • ●  Closing Bent Avenue for road improvements and bridge construction

    What to Expect

    Construction hours are Monday through Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

    Those who live in the area or visit the surrounding neighborhoods will notice construction-related noise, increased construction vehicle traffic, detours and lane and road closures during construction.

    Throughout construction, SDG&E will also be relocating utilities in the Creek Project area.qw121

    Construction Alerts

    The City encourages residents to visit the project website and sign up for alerts to stay informed throughout project construction:

  • ●  Website: Visit www.san-marcos.net/creek for project information.
  • ●  Text updates: Text SMCreek to 484848 to sign up for text updates.
  • ●  Project hotline: Call 877-SMCREEK with any questions and a team member will respond within

    48 hours.

  • ●  Email: Email creek@san-marcos.net with questions or requests and a team member will

    respond within 48 hours.

    Para información y actualizaciones en español, por favor visite la página de la ciudad: www.san- marcos.net/arroyo.

City of San Marcos launches Business Sustainability Program in response to COVID-19

Up to $3,000,000 of the City’s General Fund Reserves will be set aside for short-term business loans

At the City of San Marcos, the health and safety of our community is our top priority. We are working around the clock to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and address the needs of our residents.

The City also recognizes the significant negative impacts of the COVID-19 emergency situation on our local business community, particularly our small and independent local businesses. Many of the owners and employees of these businesses live and work right here in San Marcos.

At its March 24 meeting, the San Marcos City Council approved the City of San Marcos COVID-19 Business Sustainability Program. The program will set aside up to $3,000,000 of the City’s General Fund Reserves for short-term business loans.

The program will offer loans ranging in size up to $50,000, with fixed interest rates ranging from 0% to 3% based on the amount and duration of the term. Priority will be given to businesses with 10 or more employees for loans between $25,000 to $50,000.

“The COVID-19 emergency will undoubtedly have negative budgetary impacts on the City itself, and we will need to find ways to address them,” said City Manager Jack Griffin. “At the same time, we fully recognize the need to maintain a diverse and fiscally sound business community.”

Griffin added that, through decades of sound fiscal management, along with an entrepreneurial and business-friendly operational style, the City has developed and maintained reserves that can be used to carry the community through emergencies and economically stressful times.

Loan applications will be prioritized based on numerous factors, and applicants will be divided into three tiers based on the type of business and the extent their business has been affected by government mandates and public health guidelines related to COVID-19.

“Even in difficult times for the City, we believe that the right thing to do for our businesses and citizens is to invest in our businesses so that as many of them as possible can exit this emergency in as close a fiscal condition as when it started,” said Economic Development Director Tess Sangster.

All loan applications must be received prior to the City’s official declaration of the end of a local emergency due to COVID-19 or the expenditure of the $3,000,000 allocated to this Program, whichever occurs first.

For detailed information or to apply for the program, please visit www.san- marcos.net/businesssustainability or email Economic Development Director Tess Sangster at tsangster@san-marcos.net.

Mayor Rebecca Jones issues call to action to activate your inner HERO

Today, San Marcos Mayor Rebecca Jones issued a message to the community regarding the City’s response to COVID-19 in a new video. The video and transcript can be viewed here.

Mayor Jones is calling on every single person to become a HERO today by taking four critical steps represented by the acronym H-E-R-O.

1. Help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by following all government orders and guidelines. Everyone in California is required to stay home except to get food, care for a relative or friend, get necessary health care, or go to an essential job.

2. Educate yourself with facts, not rumors. It’s more important than ever to share factual information and not inadvertently spread misinformation. Share official updates from your City, County, State and the CDC.

3. Remain calm. Practice kindness and compassion at home and in the community – even when that means practicing social distancing of at least six feet to keep each other safe.

4. Opt in for emergency alerts. Sign up for E-news Alerts at www.san-marcos.net/alerts. Register for the County’s COVID-19 Text Message Alert System by texting COSD COVID19 to 468-311.

By taking these steps, we can help protect the health and safety of our families, friends, neighbors and our global community.

You can learn more about the City of San Marcos’ response to COVID-19 by visitingwww.san-marcos.net/covid19.

San Marcos Restaurants, Grocery Stores, Breweries and Wineries Open for Business

As a resource for the San Diego County community, we compiled a list of San Marcos restaurants, breweries, and wineries open for pick-up or drive-thru orders. The list also includes grocery stores, with information about special hours for senior citizens. See the list at www.san-marcos.net/businesses.
We’d love it if you could help us spread the word about this resource! We’re asking folks to help us keep the list continuously updated by emailing Economic Development Director Tess Sangster at TSangster@san-marcos.net.

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Update from City of San Marcos 3/13/20

At the City of San Marcos, the health and safety of our community is our top priority. There are no reported cases of COVID-19, or coronavirus disease, in San Marcos.

We are actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation, along with the CDC, the County of San Diego and emergency management services. Local and state health officials are actively engaged in preparation to keep Californians safe. In order to safeguard public health and slow the rate of transmission of COVID-19 in our state, the California Department of Public Health has issued guidelines regarding public gatherings and events. You can read the guidelines here.

Emergency services are fully operational.

Emergency services, including Fire Department and Sheriff’s Department services, are fully operational.

Residents are encouraged to engage with the City via phone and the San Marcos City App.

To save a trip to City Hall, residents can contact the City via phone at (760) 744-1050 or the San Marcos City App to report non-emergency concerns, like potholes, park maintenance and debris. The app is the quickest and most direct way for residents to alert City staff to any concerns.

City facility closures and adjusted hours

In order to minimize exposure and slow the spread of COVID-19, we are adjusting operating hours and procedures to reduce the need for residents to visit City facilities. We have increased cleaning at all City facilities. Hand sanitizer is available.

  • City Hall is open. Starting March 16, front counter hours for Development Services and Fire Department services will be 9-11 a.m. and 2-4 p.m. Cashier service will available over the phone only. All payments will be taken over the phone and business license requests will need to be processed over the phone or via email. The only payment methods we are accepting are credit cards and checks.
  • The Community Center counter will be open, but the remainder of the center will be closed. Please ring bell for service.
  • The Corky Smith Gymnasium is closed.
  • Starting March 16, hours for the Public Works counter at 201 Mata Way will be 9-11 a.m. and 2-4 p.m.
  • The Senior Activity Center (SAC) is closed except for senior nutrition program lunch pickup. Starting March 16, the SAC will be open only during the hours of 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday for nutrition program participants to pick up lunch to go. Reservations are required and must be made by phone by 3 p.m. the day before pick up to reserve. There are no monthly reservations. Cost for residents 60 and over is a $4 suggested donation. Cost for residents under 60 is $5. We appreciate all donations. No eligible person shall be denied a meal because of inability to contribute.
Public gatherings, classes and event cancellations

The following City events and programs are canceled or postponed until further notice:

  • All Parks and Recreation classes
  • All organized youth and adult sports programs, activities and leagues
  • Raggedy Ann & Andy classes starting March 16
    • If you would still like to attend the Spring Session, scheduled for April 6-June 9, please pay for your spot online at www.san-marcos.net/register prior to March 17. If the start date is changed, we will prorate refunds for any days missed.
  • Citizens Academy
  • General Plan Update Visioning Workshops #2 and #3
  • March 14 Community CPR class
  • March 16 Planning Commission Meeting
  • March 18 Parks and Recreation Commission Meeting
  • March 21 Sinking Roots in San Marcos Arbor Day event
  • March 22 Star Walk
  • March 31 State of Your Community event
  • April 1 Traffic Commission Meeting
  • San Marcos Fire Department station tours
What can I do to prevent getting COVID-19?

There is currently no vaccine available to protect against COVID-19, but it is recommended for everyone to get their flu vaccine and practice proven preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Support local businesses

The City encourages residents to keep local businesses in mind when shopping for goods and services. If you find yourself staying in more due to COVID-19 concerns, consider purchasing a gift card at your favorite restaurant or store to treat yourself at a later date.

Stay informed

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Update No reported cases in San Marcos. Several City events postponed.

At the City of San Marcos, the health and safety of our community is our top priority. There are no reported cases of COVID-19, or coronavirus disease, in San Marcos.

We are actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation, along with the CDC, the County of San Diego and emergency management services. Local and state health officials are actively engaged in preparation to keep Californians safe.

The City is open.

All City facilities remain open during normal business hours. Emergency services, including Fire Department and Sheriff’s Department services, are fully operational.

Increased sanitary measures

We have increased cleaning at all City facilities. Hand sanitizer is available.

Residents are encouraged to engage with the City via phone and the San Marcos City App.

To save a trip to City Hall, residents can contact the City via phone at (760) 744-1050 or the San Marcos City App to report non-emergency concerns, like potholes, park maintenance and debris. The app is the quickest and most direct way for residents to alert City staff to any concerns. Learn more about the app at www.san-marcos.net/city-app.

Public gatherings update

In order to safeguard public health and slow the rate of transmission of COVID-19 in our state, the California Department of Public Health has issued guidelines regarding public gatherings and events. You can read the guidelines here.

The following City events are postponed until further notice:

  • San Marcos Citizens Academy
  • General Plan Update Visioning Workshops #2 and #3
  • March 16 Planning Commission Meeting
  • March 18 Parks and Recreation Commission Meeting
  • March 22 Star Walk
  • March 31 State of Your Community event
  • April 1 Traffic Commission MeetingAdditional changes to events will be posted on the City’s COVID-19 Response webpage at

    www.san-marcos.net/covid19

    What can I do to prevent getting COVID-19?

    There is currently no vaccine available to protect against COVID-19, but it is recommended for everyone to get their flu vaccine and practice proven preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Support local businesses

The City encourages residents to keep local businesses in mind when shopping for goods and services. If you find yourself staying in more due to COVID-19 concerns, consider purchasing a gift card at your favorite restaurant or store to treat yourself at a later date.

Stay informed

  • Visit the City’s COVID-19 Response webpage for information about City’s response to COVID-19 at www.san-marcos.net/covid19.
  • To learn more about COVID-19 and to stay updated with the latest news and information, visit the County’s comprehensive information portal at www.coronavirus-sd.com.
  • Sign up for City news and alerts by visiting www.san-marcos.net/alerts.
  • Sign up for Alert San Diego emergency alerts at www.readysandiego.org/alertsandiego/.
  • You can also call 2-1-1 to speak to someone if you have general questions.

City of San Marcos Single Use Plastics Survey

Take a survey to share your thoughts! The survey is designed to gauge the opinions of San Marcos residents on single-use plastic products distributed in restaurants and sold in grocery stores in order to provide City staff with accurate information in considering any control ordinances on the subject.

  • Please read the Single-Use Plastics Fact Sheet before completing the survey. You can view the fact sheet here.
  • You can take the survey here.
  • Please respond by March 20, 2020.
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