California Will End Most of Its Mask Mandate Next Week

••• The Montecito Association reports that there will not be sound walls alongside the Montecito section of Highway 101 after all, due to flood-control regulations. “In place of the sound walls, chain link fencing planted with vines and landscaping will be proposed.” (Can we agree that the sound walls in Carp are a little Inland Empire?) The rendering is by the Highway 101 design team, via the Montecito Association.

••• “California’s indoor masking requirement will end next week [on February 15] for vaccinated people but masks still are the rule for schoolchildren,” reports KSBY. Santa Barbara County will likely follow suit. UPDATE 2/9: “The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department on Tuesday said it has not yet made a decision regarding whether to follow the state’s lead and end the local COVID-19 universal mask mandate for indoor public places next week. […] Public Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg told Noozhawk that the county will provide an update on the local indoor mask order on Thursday.”

••• Noozhawk has more on the Courtyard by Marriott opening on State Street: “The 39,459-square-foot, three-story addition to the existing [La Quinta Inn] will consist of a new sub-grade parking lot with 62 parking spaces. The ground floor will have 28 new covered parking spaces, a new entrance lobby off State Street, a courtyard, a new pool,”—which answers Deb T’s question—”a spa, a dining/bar area, a kitchen and six hotel rooms. The second floor will have 32 rooms, and the third floor will have 28 rooms with a third-story deck and a rooftop deck, both facing State Street. The entire project will result in a combined 63,110-square-foot, three-story hotel with 122 hotel rooms and 123 parking spaces. The hotel is set to open in late summer or early fall.”

••• “Gaviota Rest Areas Now Scheduled to Reopen in April after $4.6 million in Upgrades […] Sites on both sides of Highway 101 at the Gaviota tunnel have been closed since last summer for a wastewater treatment system installation and other improvements.” —Noozhawk

••• Six former employees of the Santa Barbara Humane Society wrote an open letter to the Independent alleging mismanagement, to which CEO Kerri Burns wrote a rebuttal.

••• “Urchin Diver Scott Thompson Survives Five-Hour Swim in Santa Barbara Channel […] Falls off Boat but Makes It to Platform Gail.” —Independent


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