Coastal Café

Maritime Center Deals with COVID-19 Challenges

(First airdate: January 6, 2021) Today we talk with Jake Beattie, the Executive Director of the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend. Jake details how the Maritime Center has had to adapt to challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. Listen in to hear about the new 360 Race and other exciting events and programs.

Beach Tours During the Time of COVID-19

(First airdate: October 14, 2020) The Pacific Northwest has a long history of offering educational beach walking tours on its beaches and along its shores, where families and naturalists alike learn about the wonders of our sea life. Marine Ecologist, Jeff Adams, with the University of Washington and Washington Sea Grant, works on a wide range of aquatic and watershed issues with colleagues from Washington State University and numerous other partnerships and particularly Jeff develops beach naturalist and watershed stewardship programs. Learn how Jeff and his colleagues continued their work and adapted beach tours during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Chaos, Coffee and Covid – Recovery Cafe

(Airdate: September 1, 2020) Catching up with Recovery Cafe manager Brian Richardson and volunteer extraordinaire Tom Young, we learn how a non-profit in the midst of opening with hopes to provide a vital service stays the course during our Pandemic. Consider the progress and promise of this community space with Missy Nielsen of Everybody Can.

Habitat for Humanity During COVID-19

(Airdate: July 21, 2020) The critical need for housing that has been laid bare by the Coronavirus. Permanent, affordable, healthy and low cost housing is  urgently needed. Jefferson County Habitat for Humanity offers that opportunity. Executive Director Jamie Maciejewski speaks with Missy Nielsen of Everybody Can to catch us up on how this organization is doing.

#155 Kelly Barlow, No Hands on in the Time of COVID

(Airdate: June 30, 2020) NO HANDS ON IN THE TIME OF COVID. Our Town Host Maryanne McNellis interviews massage therapist, Kelly Barlow, owner of one of the many local businesses that was forced to shut down during the COVID-19 crisis. Kelly had zero income for almost three months. She spent down her savings and tried (mostly without success) to find her way through the thicket of regulations to get federal or state aid. She’s now back with a very limited and thoroughly sanitized operation. By definition, massage is a hands-on profession. So Kelly’s also begun studying to expand her skill set. She was once in the catering business. Now she’s taking courses in nutrition, planning perhaps for a career expansion into nutritional consulting.

Stepping Up in the Midst of COVID Chaos

(First airdate: June 9, 2020) During this time of Covid Chaos and social distancing, folks have found creative ways to support and respond to the needs of others. Continuing our “Stepping Up” series Missy Nielsen of Everybody Can speaks to a couple of folks who stepped up. Fred Hammerquist, an avid outdoorsman and national park advocate for the Washington National Park Fund, managed to shake his cabin fever while serving his community. Joy Winfrey leans into her quilting skills, launching a mask-making challenge. Please join us to discover the micro-moments that are the building blocks of caring communities such as ours.

Special City & County Meeting on COVID-19 ~ 5/19

On Tuesday, May 19, KPTZ aired a joint COVID-19 emergency situation meeting. Jefferson County Commissioners, Port Commissioners, County Board of Health, and Port Townsend City Council convened together to address the option of applying for a variance for Jefferson County to move sooner to the governor’s Safe Start Phase-2 reopening activities. Our elected leaders reviewed public comments and heard from representatives of some of the different sectors.  

In addition to hearing from Dr. Tom Locke of Jefferson County Public Health Officer, featured speakers included Brian Kuh of EDC Team Jefferson, Arlene Alen of the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, Debbie Williams and Frank Redmon of the North Hood Canal Chamber of Commerce, and Dave Robison of the Fort Worden Public Development Authority. This meeting was preparatory to the BOCC vote this Friday on whether to accept Public Health recommendations for the Washington Safe Start, Phase 2 options.

Joint Meeting 5/19/20, Part 1
Joint Meeting 5/19/20, Part 2
Joint Meeting 5/19/20, Part 3

Special City & County Meeting on COVID-19 Audio – 5/07

On Thursday, May 7, KPTZ aired a joint COVID-19 emergency situation meeting. Jefferson County Commissioners, County Board of Health, Port Townsend City Council convened together to address the option of applying for a variance for Jefferson County to move sooner to the governor’s Safe Start Phase-2 reopening activities.

Featured speakers were Dr. Tom Locke of Jefferson County Public Health Officer, Willie Bence, Director of Jefferson County’s Emergency Operations Center and Mike Glenn, CEO of Jefferson Healthcare. Dr. Locke discussed the attributes of Inslee’s Phase-2 plan, to be determined by our elected leaders. The next step will be a special County Public Health meeting scheduled for Thursday, May 14.

Joint Meeting 5/07/20, part 1
Joint Meeting 5/07/20, part 2
Joint Meeting 5/07/20, part 3

COVID-19 Local Information

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Tom Locke by emailing ContactUs@KPTZ.org

COVID-19 Vaccination Appointments
COVID-19 Vaccinations
Jefferson County December 2020 Case Numbers
COVID-19 Stay Vigilant
COVID-19 Guidelines for Religious Services
Running Out of ICU Beds
Dr. Locke’s Advice for Our Community
WANotify
WA Health Care Authority
Rising COVID, Rising Risk
Gatherings
Be a Leader
Third Wave
Case Count Rising
Thanksgiving at Home
Governor Inslee’s New Order
Pandemic Pep Talk
Avoid Large Gatherings
Three Things to Do
Pandemic Fatigue
State of Washington Thanks You
Tarboo Lake Covid Testing Needed
Covid JeffCo Pats on Our Backs
Masks and Shields
Masks Are Effective – Coughing
Jeff Co Public Health/Covid-19 Testing
Hand Washing
Top 10 Reasons to Wear a Mask
Washington Listens Call Line
Reopening / Your Behavior
Safe Reopening
Safer Reopening / Testing
Testing Caregivers
Dept. Emergency Mgt. – Mask Fabric
Masks for You
EOC Masks #1
Masks for You
Dr. Locke / Support Local Restaurants
COVID-19 Transmission Fact #1
COVID-19 Transmission Fact #2
COVID-19 Transmission Fact #3
Dr. Tom Locke / Mid-May
Face Masks Q&A
N95 / Surgical Masks
Don’t Call 911 to Report “Stay at Home” Violations
Don’t Flush Wipes
COVID-19 Mask Guidelines
Grocery Shopping
Stay Home

COVID-19 Vaccination Appointments

COVID-19 vaccinations are underway in Jefferson County, and moving down through the list of age brackets.
Appointments can be made online at Jeffersonhealthcare.org or at TriAreaPharmacy.com.
Please do not telephone the hospital or pharmacy for scheduling.
If you do need help registering, call the local Department of Emergency Management weekdays from 9am to 4pm at 360-344-9791.

COVID-19 Vaccinations

COVID-19 vaccinations are underway in Jefferson County, starting with our most at risk citizens and moving down the age brackets.
Currently, Jefferson HealthCare and TriArea Pharmacy, offer vaccines by appointments only. These can be made online at Jeffersonhealthcare.org or TriAreaPharmacy.com.
Both websites have details about the process, including what to expect, what to bring and any paperwork needed to get your vaccine.
If you know anyone who is in this priority group, you are encouraged to reach out and let them know about this vaccination opportunity.
Please do not call Jefferson Healthcare or the pharmacy for scheduling.
KPTZ will let you know when other people in the current tier can get vaccinations, after our most vulnerable folks have received the vaccine.

Jefferson County December 2020 Case Numbers

This graph shows the monthly and cumulative number of COVID-19 infections reported in Jefferson County, from March through the end of 2020. Data source: Jefferson County Public Health Department website, graph created by KPTZ.

As of December 31, 2020 the total number of COVID-19 cases in Jefferson County was 225. There were 58 cases in December, down from the spike of 79 in November. 

COVID-19 Stay Vigilant

Overall, Jefferson County has done well handling the pandemic. And now, in the third wave of infections, we all need to be more vigilant than ever.
Lately there are higher amounts of circulating virus in our community. Without signs of flattening the steep rise, COVID-19 cases will persist. And since local case counts have gone up, this increases potential for life-threatening disease and for running out of ICU beds.

We all need to focus on what we know stops transmission. It takes continuing the prevention measures: less in-person shopping, less mixing of non-household members, less visiting, reducing out-of-county travel except for absolutely necessary appointments, and increased attention to distancing, which gives more protection on top of masking.

KPTZ urges you to stay informed to be safe and healthy, during this challenging season!

COVID-19 Guidelines for Religious Services

Governor Inslee issued a revised “Stay Home Stay Healthy” order on December 21, pertaining to religious services and singing in enclosed spaces. Under the new order, the indoor and outdoor limit of 200 people is a recommendation, not a requirement. Restrictions on singing only apply to indoor singing by congregations. Soloists may sing indoors and congregations may sing outdoors provided every singer wears a face covering. To learn more about COVID-19, go to coronavirus.wa.gov.

Running Out of ICU Beds

Washington hospitals have 341 ICU beds, but as of mid-December, 80 percent of them are occupied. UW modelers predict we’ll have zero ICU beds available by January 1.

So if you haven’t been masking up, it’s time to wake up.

ICU beds are needed for stroke and heart attack victims and people injured in car wrecks and shootings, not just COVID-19 patients on ventilators.

Wear your mask…Stay six feet apart…Wash your hands…Repeat.
…Until everyone’s had a chance to get vaccinated.

Dr. Locke’s Advice for Our Community

The COVID-19 pandemic is steadily worsening throughout the U.S., including Washington state and Jefferson County. Exposure risk is likely to remain high for the next three to four months. People are tired of having their lives disrupted and are willing to take more and more risks. Activities like social gatherings that were low risk during the summer are now much more likely to result in COVID-19 transmission.

My advice is to try to forgo as much preventable risk as possible, including club meetings, social events, non-essential travel, and the like. We’re experiencing the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. It will almost certainly be worse than anything we’ve previously experienced.

On a hopeful note, vaccines are on the verge of licensure and deployment. Vaccine supply will be very limited at first, but as winter gives way to spring, supplies will improve and the end of this long public health emergency will finally be in sight.

WANotify

Washington State’s Department of Health now offers WANotify, a simple, anonymous exposure notification tool to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The privacy-preserving technology works without collecting or revealing any personal data or location. WANotify can be easily enabled in iPhone settings, or downloaded as an app for Android phones. More information at doh.wa.gov.

WA Health Care Authority

Staying healthy is more important now than ever. If you need health insurance, the Washington Health Care Authority wants you to know that plans are available through the Affordable Care Act until December 15. To find out if you’re eligible, visit WAHealthplanfinder.org – that’s WAHealthplanfinder dot o-r-g. Don’t wait. Sign up today.

Rising COVID, Rising Risk

We’ve all done a great job of keeping the spread of COVID at bay, and with new advances in vaccines, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. But it’ll be a good number of months before we can say “hasta la vista, baby” to the virus and cases are on the rise. So, our Department of Emergency Management is asking you to be COVID S.M.A.R.T. ! That’s S-M-A-R-T:
S: Sanitize frequently.
M: Mask appropriately – even with family & friends outside your household.
A: Air Flow – When socializing try to stay outside. If you’re inside, use fans and open windows to keep that air moving.
R: Room between people – Stay six feet apart whenever possible.
T: Technology for gatherings – Use video conferencing technology instead of in-person visits.
Keep up the great work everyone and Jefferson County will get through this…together.

Gatherings

The State of Washington would like to remind everyone that you can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 by gathering more safely this holiday season.
Try to keep gatherings outside – or virtual.
If in-person, limit to 5 or fewer guests, and make sure everyone can stay 6-feet apart.
Don’t share food, utensils or drinks.
And wear masks whenever you’re with people you don’t live with.
Learn more at coronavirus.wa.gov/gatherings.

Be a Leader

You can be a leader, and help stop the spread of COVID-19, help our front-line workers survive, and help keep our hospitals from filling up. Have a holiday celebration within your household. Save the parties for after the new year. We can make it through this together, and return to the people and activities we love. In early November, our state’s daily case rate was around 600. Soon after, it surpassed 2000. Let’s be part of the solution, for a healthy future.

Third Wave

The third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is already larger than the first two, and is expected to have a significant impact on our resources and our capacity to control the spread of infection.
Researchers at the University of Washington predict our state will run out of ICU hospital beds in December if the current rate of new cases continues.
Our public health officer, Dr. Locke has recently recommended two more actions that reduce transmission as well. First, assume that cold like symptoms may indicate a COVID-19 infection and get tested. Second, do not attend or plan any gatherings of family and friends from other households.
By continuing to take these precautions, each of us can help reduce the burden on our hospitals and front line workers.
So continue to wear a mask, wash your hands and stay at least six feet apart from others when out in public.
Currently, our own individual behaviors are the most important tool we have to slow the spread of this infection.

Case Count Rising

You’ve heard that COVID cases are rising rapidly around the world, and until recently Jefferson County has been a relatively safe bubble. Not so much, anymore.
Our county and our region are experiencing the exponential growth that we’ve been trying to avoid. King County new daily infections rose to a record 300 on November 1st, and just two weeks later they hit 800!
Jefferson County’s infection rate has also been rising fast, driven in part by spread among attendees of a party. And our local healthcare system is already maxed out.
We all want to spend holidays with friends and family, and temptations abound for letting our guard – or our masks – down. This is not the time! Please, for your sake and for the sake of the people you care about, stay home, especially during the holidays. We urge you to pay attention to travel restrictions and the ban on indoor gatherings. We can get through this, but it takes ALL of us to bring the infection rate back down.

Thanksgiving At Home

Maybe you’ve heard, the Governor’s order prohibits spending Thanksgiving with anybody outside your household. Maybe you’re thinking that you’re healthy and your friends or family are healthy and you can defy those Thanksgiving rules. Please don’t! Nobody knows who’s infected and it takes every one of us to stay at home to bring the infection rate down. Please do your part, again, to make the exponential spread of COVID a thing of the past.

Governor Inslee’s New Order

Governor Inslee has issued a new COVID-19 order rolling back most “Safe Start” rules, effective through December 14th.
Indoor social gatherings with people from outside your household are prohibited unless they have quarantined for 14 days or quarantined for seven days AND received a negative test result no more than 48 hours prior to the gathering.
Outdoor social gatherings are limited to five people from outside your household.
Restaurants and bars are closed to indoor dining. Take-out and outdoor dining are still permitted.
Groceries and retail stores are limited to 25 percent occupancy.
Indoor activities are prohibited at gyms, museums, and other venues.
Weddings and funerals of up to 30 people are permitted, but indoor receptions, wakes, and similar events are prohibited.
For more information on these temporary guidelines, go to coronavirus. wa. gov.

Pandemic Pep Talk

Governor Inslee appeared on TV directing us to forego holiday gatherings with family and friends. With COVID-19 cases rapidly rising, this will save lives, ease the burden on front line workers, and reduce hospitalizations.
Like all pandemics, this one will end. Early vaccine results are promising, but are months away from universal availability.
Jefferson County has been doing a great job. Thanks to all who continue to keep everyone safe!

Avoid Large Gatherings

A cluster of COVID-19 infections in Jefferson County was discovered among attendees from unrelated households at a Halloween party.
If multiple events of this scale take place during the Thanksgiving or December holidays, we would continue to see a steeper increase of cases in our county – which until now, has had one of the lowest infection rates in the country.
With lower infection rates, we have the opportunity to continue our economic progress and lower the risk of health consequences to our citizens.
KPTZ, our radio family, urge all residents to resist any holiday gatherings that involve friends or family outside of your immediate household. That is, only those with whom you now live. Every time we mix households, we give this virus another chance to spread.
Wishing you Happy Holidays and will be seeing you on Zoom!

Three Things To Do

Reducing COVID-19 transmission is as simple as 1-2-3:
1. Limit your time in poorly ventilated spaces.
2. If you have cold-like symptoms … assume it’s COVID-19 and get tested, just as our county health officer Dr. Locke suggests.
3. Practice the trifecta: Distance yourself, wash your hands, and keep wearing that mask.
Jefferson County has been doing a superb job. Thanks to all who continue to keep this community safer!

Pandemic Fatigue

Now that we’re in the “third wave” of the COVID-19 pandemic, our state is experiencing a huge increase – not just in infections, but also, people have “pandemic fatigue.”
Yes, we’re getting pretty tired of wearing masks, staying six feet away from other people, washing our hands all day, and not being able to gather with our friends for a meal or a beer.
Like all pandemics, this one will eventually end. Early vaccine results are promising, but it appears we’re some months away from widespread vaccine availability.
So, fatigued or not, the most important thing for us all to do going forward, is maintain our efforts to slow the spread of infection ~ so our medical system isn’t overwhelmed.
Jefferson County has been doing a superb job. Thanks to all who continue to keep everyone safe!

State of Washington Thanks You

The State of Washington would like to thank everyone for helping stop the spread of COVID-19:
– By wearing a mask, even when you’re outside.
– By keeping six feet apart, even when everyone you’re with feels healthy.
– And by keeping gatherings small, even if you’re just with close family or friends.
Together we can keep ourselves and our communities safe.
More information about stopping the spread of COVID-19 at coronavirus.wa.gov

Tarboo Lake Covid Testing Needed

Friday, August 21. This is an urgent announcement from the Jefferson County Health Department:
Anyone who went to Tarboo Lake on Saturday, August 15 or Sunday, August 16 needs to get a COVID-19 test. Call your medical provider or the COVID testing clinic at 360-344-3094.
A Covid case reported earlier this week has been associated with a gathering at Tarboo Lake. Another case reported Thursday may also be related. The Health Department has so far identified 23 contacts to this incident and needs to reach all these people for them to quarantine.
Jefferson County continues to rise in COVID-19 cases. At large gatherings, people need to follow the mask and distance guidelines. Two cases were added on Thursday, August 20, bringing our total to 64.

Covid JeffCo Pats on Our Backs

Hi, Phil Andrus here, host of Cats in Our Laps. In 1977 when I decided to stake my future in Jefferson County, I was drawn by the physical beauty of the Peninsula, the nearby mountains and the sea, but also by the people I would meet, their openness and their sense of shared destiny. 

Now we’re living in the fateful year 2020, the first year of the coronavirus pandemic, and it is those very same values that sustain us, that make us a model of adaptation to a vicious virus. The mountains and the sea give us respite from the constantly dismal national statistics, and each other. Our friendliness and our sense of shared destiny keep masks on our smiling faces and distance where we would rather hugs would be. 

We are behaving ourselves so wonderfully well, we owe each other, all of us, even the skeptics, and especially our healthcare professionals, a resounding Thank You. How very lucky we are to be here, and to have KPTZ on our radios at 91.9.

Masks and Shields

This is Dr. Tom Locke, Jefferson County health officer.
To address the COVID-19 pandemic, Washington has a state-wide “no mask, no service” order.
This prohibits businesses from serving customers unless they are wearing masks.
If you are one of those few people who has a medical exemption to masking, you must refrain from entering businesses. Instead, you’ll have to arrange for curbside pickup, delivery, or have someone else – with a mask – do your shopping for you.
Please note a mask has to cover your mouth and your nose to be effective. Worn properly, masks can prevent 95% of transmissions.
A plastic face shield can give you additional protection, but does not protect anyone else. If you choose to wear a face shield, you must also wear a mask to protect other people from infection.
Masks are required in outdoor locations when social distancing cannot be maintained, and in all indoor public spaces. Thank you.

Masks Are Effective ~ Coughing

To stop the spread of COVID-19, cloth face masks protect others when you talk, cough or sneeze.
A mask is effective only when both your nose and mouth are covered.
Once your mask is in place, don’t touch! Keep it clean ~ wash it with soapy hot water, and heat-dry it.
Our Public Health Officer Dr. Tom Locke agrees with the CDC: cloth masks are effective to help stop the virus. Face shields are not recommended.
Be Safe, and Mask up, Jefferson!

Jeff Co Public Health/Covid-19 Testing

Coronavirus symptoms, even when mild, are unique to each person. And fever is a common factor, says Jefferson County Public Health Officer Dr. Tom Locke. Other symptoms include coughing, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and loss of taste or smell. See more at the webpage: jefferson (dot) wa (dot) u s. When exhibiting symptoms consistent with COVID-19, or after coming in contact with someone who has the virus, you are encouraged to contact Jefferson Healthcare in Port Townsend and ask for a test. Jefferson Healthcare’s dedicated Nurse Consult Line is staffed seven days a week, 8am to 5pm: 360-344-3094.

Hand Washing

This Larry Stein from KPTZ. I’m in Seattle for awhile during this social distancing period. But wherever we are, we all have to wash our hands. I’ve found a silver lining – it’s how darn clean my hands feel. I really like the World Health Organization’s guidelines for washing your hands. You put the soap on and you scrub your hands before you put much water on them. You lather your hands, scrub the nails of one hand on the palm of the other hand. They give that wonderful technique where you wrap a hand around your thumb and scrub your thumb. You interlace your fingers from the bottom and then from the top to get in between your fingers really good. You do this all for twenty, thirty, forty seconds. Then you rinse it. Wow! It feels so good. I think after all this is over, my hands will be a lot cleaner. 

Top 10 Reasons to Wear a Mask

10. Kids can go back to school. Wear a mask and keep all kids healthy.
9. Small businesses can stay open. With more people out and about, wearing a face covering protects our economy.
8. Be a leader in the community. Demonstrate how to take care of others.
7. It’s rude to make other people sick. With a new virus that can be spread to others when we talk or breathe, cover your face to keep your germs to yourself!
6. Show essential workers they’re appreciated. Protect their health by covering your face.
5. Express yourself. Use your mask to uphold your freedom of speech.
4. Leaving home to go out. To see friends and family, or get your hair cut, keep everyone healthy.
3. Support your cause. Many nonprofits benefit from your purchase of a mask.
2. Save money on make up. Or cover a blemish. Whatever good reasons!
1. It literally saves lives. Fewer people will get sick if we all wear our masks.
Be a good neighbor! And, thank you.

Washington Listens Call Line

(30-second PSA) The Washington Listens program supports anyone in Washington experiencing stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic, or any of the events that have occurred because of it. The Washington Listens call line offers support services to help people deal with their stress from the outbreak and build recovery. Call 833-681-0211 Monday through Friday 9am to 9pm and weekends from 9am to 6pm. The number again, is 833-681-0211. Washington Listens!

(60-second PSA) The Washington Listens program supports everyone in our state, affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. All services are anonymous, and available to any state resident ~ everyone in Washington ~ for children and youth to older adults.

Through the Washington Listens call line, support services are available to help people deal with their stress from the outbreak and build recovery. This includes providing someone to talk to, groups to help work through the stress together, resources to self-manage, and connection to resources.

The Washington Listens support line at 833-681-0211 is open Monday through Friday from 9am to 9pm and Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 6pm. Washington Listens is available to anyone in Washington to speak to a support specialist. The number again, is 833-681-0211. Washington Listens!

Reopening / Your Behavior

Public Health professionals have given us tools and guidance on strategies to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Taking these measures keeps us safer. If the level of community participation in these recommended practices is not giving you the protection from infection that you seek, you can still limit your public interactions to reduce your participation in more public settings.

Safe Reopening

The progression for safely reopening our local economy calls on us to willingly take healthy measures of mask wearing, sanitation, and physical distancing.

Individuals over age 65 are encouraged to remain at home until Phase 4 of the Governor’s orders, especially those with underlying health conditions. Wearing a mask and distancing are safe practices for essential shopping trips, appointments, and outdoor activities.

Safer Reopening / Testing

If you expose yourself to a high risk setting, your responsibility is to then quarantine. If you do actually have an infection, entering back into the public could spread the virus.

When you quarantine for 14 days to wait for onset of symptoms, this reduces transmission of infection, should you progress to disease.

Accuracy of COVID-19 test results is dependent on timing.
If tested before there’s enough circulating virus to be detected, may give a false negative result.

Dr. Locke, Jefferson County’s Public Health Officer, recommends waiting to be tested until onset of symptoms ~ from the list, including fever or chills, cough, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion, or nausea.

The health of our entire community depends on each of us, playing our part.

Testing Caregivers

Symptoms get you access to COVID-19 testing, rather than your participation in high-risk exposure settings. So reviewing the CDC symptom list is the guide for knowing when to be tested.

The exception to this involves caregivers of high-risk persons, who may develop life-threatening conditions if their caretaker has asymptomatic or symptomatic infection. The caregiver needs to include this information in any interaction with a health care provider.

Dept. Emergency Mgt. – Mask Fabric

Jefferson County Department of Emergency Management is asking for donations for masks, also gift cards for JoAnn Fabrics.
Those wishing to donate funds or gift cards can mail them to:
..Department of Emergency Management
..81 Elkins Road
..Port Hadlock, 98339
To donate fabric that can be made into masks, please contact Jefferson County Department of Emergency Management office to make arrangements.

EOC Masks #1

The most protective measures to stop the spread of new infections during this pandemic are to wash our hands, stay at least 6 feet away from others, and wear a face cover.
Since face masks are a new thing, many of us have scrambled to find them.
Face Masks Challenge Port Townsend is a community of seamstresses who volunteer to make cloth masks according to guidelines from our local Emergency Operations Center.
Listen to KPTZ for info on where you can find these. And, stay well!

Masks for You

This is for you!

First of all, I wear a mask in public ~ not for ME, but for YOU.

I know I could be asymptomatic ~ and still give you the virus.

No, I don’t “live in fear of the virus.” I just want to be part of the solution, not the problem.

I don’t feel like the “government is controlling me,” I feel like I am contributing to our community.

Wearing a mask doesn’t make me weak, scared, stupid or even “controlled.” It makes me considerate.

The world doesn’t revolve around me. It’s not all about me and my comfort.

If we all could live with other people in mind, this whole world would be a much better place.

This is for you.

Dr. Locke / Support Local Restaurants

Jefferson County Public Health Officer Dr Tom Locke spoke at the recent City and County COVID-19 emergency situation joint meeting and stated: “I really do support organized efforts to encourage greater use of takeout and keep our restaurants alive. If you want those restaurants to be here when this is all over, you have to support them now and through this entire process.”

In a recent KPTZ Compass interview Dr. Locke added the following:
“That’s going to be a push of ours in the weeks ahead, just trying to save restaurants. We’ve got to get people to commit to doing a certain amount of take-out every week.” KPTZ joins with Dr. Locke in encouraging all of us to support local restaurants.

COVID-19 Transmission Fact #1

When an infected person coughs or sneezes, this means two hundred million viral particles are released. Some of the virus hangs in the air, some falls onto surfaces, most fall to the ground.

When you’re facing another person, having a conversation, if that person sneezes or coughs straight at you, it’s pretty easy to see how possible it is to inhale a thousand virus particles and become infected.

Remember: The Likelihood of Infection equals Exposure to Virus, multiplied by Length of Time.

Information from Dr. Erin Bromage: “The Risks – Know Them – Avoid Them” 

COVID-19 Transmission Fact #2

When an infected person coughs or sneezes, even if not directed at you, some infected droplets – the smallest of small – can hang in the air for a few minutes, filling every corner of a modest sized room with infectious viral particles.

Then, if you enter that room within minutes after the cough or sneeze, and take a few breaths, you potentially will have received enough virus to cause an infection.

Remember – The Likelihood of Infection equals Exposure to Virus, multiplied by Length of Time.

Information from Dr. Erin Bromage: “The Risks – Know Them – Avoid Them” 

COVID-19 Transmission Fact #3

One single cough releases about three thousand droplets, and the droplets travel at fifty miles per hour. Most droplets are large, and fall quickly, but many stay in the air and can travel across a room in seconds. One sneeze alone releases about thirty thousand droplets, with these droplets traveling at up to two hundred miles per hour. Most droplets are small and travel great distances, easily reaching across a room.

Remember- The Likelihood of Infection equals Exposure to Virus, multiplied by Length of Time.

Information from Dr. Erin Bromage: “The Risks – Know Them – Avoid Them” 

Dr. Tom Locke / Mid-May

This is Dr. Tom Locke, Jefferson County Health Officer. In the past month we have seen a dramatic decrease in COVID-19 cases in Jefferson County. This tells us that physical distancing works, and enough people are doing it to make a real difference.

It’s important to remember that we are still in the very early stages of this pandemic. Until there is a vaccine or effective antiviral medications, social distancing is the best tool we have for protecting ourselves and the vulnerable members of the community. That means restricting travel, keeping six feet apart in public, and when we can, wearing masks.

We need to wash our hands frequently, cover our coughs and, very importantly, stay home if you are sick. If you think you may have symptoms of COVID-19 please call the Jefferson Healthcare hotline at 360-344-3094.

Face Masks Q&A

Here are some Questions and Answers about wearing masks.

Q: Should healthy people wear a mask?
A: The Centers for Disease Control recommends wearing a cloth mask when out in public and not within social distance guidelines. Children age 2 and younger should not wear face covers.

Q: Why wear a mask?                                                             
A: It helps protect those around you. Evidence shows that COVID-19 can spread by just talking or breathing, even when you seem healthy. 

Q: What type of mask is best?
A: Wearing a cloth mask to cover your nose and mouth. Ideally, masks should have at least two layers of a tightly woven fabric that’s breathable and washable, like cotton. If you don’t have a mask, you can also use a bandana or scarf as a face covering. 

Q: What’s the best way to wear a mask?
A: Before putting on your mask, wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer. With clean hands, cover your nose and mouth with the mask and secure it, making sure there are no gaps between your face and the mask. It’s important not to touch the front of your mask.

Q: How can you clean a used mask?
A: Cloth masks or face coverings should be washed after each use. Clean them using hot, soapy water — either by hand or in a washing machine — then on a hot cycle in the dryer. Disposable masks should not be used more than once.

N95 / Surgical Masks

New federal guidelines regarding masks stresses that N-95 respirators and surgical masks must be prioritized for use by healthcare workers and first responders. These types of filter masks are life-saving protection for staff who perform intubations and other procedures that generate infectious sprays. Without them, our front line workers face increased risk.   

If you have filter barriers, unused N95 respirators or surgical masks, and you want to protect our front line staff, you can donate them. There are dropoff stations around town, including at both libraries. Thank you!

Don’t Call 911 to Report “Stay at Home” Violations

To address the Coronavirus, Governor Jay Inslee has issued the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order, closing nonessential businesses and prohibiting both public and private gatherings.

For more information about the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order, go to coronavirus.wa.gov, where you can also find additional resources for addressing the coronavirus.

You’re asked NOT to call 9-1-1 to report suspected violations of Stay Home, Stay Healthy. Please remember that our 911 system is for emergency calls only. Only call 9-1-1 to report a medical emergency, a fire, a crime in progress, or other life-threatening situations.

For additional information about the CoVid-19 situation please visit the Washington State Department of Health website.

Don’t Flush Wipes

The City of Port Townsend’s Wastewater Operations Manager reminds people not to flush any sanitizing or baby wipes down the toilet. 

Including the wipes that say ‘flushable’ on the label. Only toilet paper down the toilet.

The wipes do not break down and instead can cause thousands of dollars worth of damage to the city’s collection system and treatment plant equipment.

No wipes of any kind or paper towels should be flushed. Instead, throw them in the trash.

COVID-19 Mask Guidelines

In an epidemic as fast moving as Covid-19, it’s not surprising that new information from scientists means current guidelines need adjustments. Federal health officials recently announced their efforts to update guidelines on wearing barrier masks for anyone leaving their home for an essential trip.

These recommendations have added one more tool to starve the virus in its efforts to find a new host. The thinking is this: If you combine the practice of social distancing, sanitizing all surfaces you touch, the addition of a home-made barrier covering or mask can increase the odds of not getting infected. This can be thought of as the trifecta: three ways to keep the infection away from you and your loved ones. Stay healthy!

Grocery Shopping

From Jefferson County Public Health, here are some tips for grocery shopping – we all need to be careful and change our behavior.

First, avoid crowding, don’t go in if it looks crowded; instead choose a different time.

Wash your hands when you go in – this helps protect the entire community.
Wash your hands again when you leave – this is to protect you.

Maintain 6 feet of physical distance in the store, in case someone coughs or sneezes.

Minimize your handling of things. Take whatever you touch. Once you touch something, consider your hands contaminated.

People are cut off from socialization, so you may want to talk with people you know but remember to keep your distance, and don’t go to stores to socialize.

Finally, ordering take-out is encouraged. It also helps our local restaurants. Remember, don’t congregate at the pick up spots.

Stay Home

Please be aware, this is a critical time when people are asked to Stay Home and Stay Healthy. To minimize the spread of COVID-19, we’re encouraged to limit any outings, particularly visits to the store. Travel as little as possible, and if you do need to go out, be sure to maintain physical distance. Remember it’s good to recycle and reuse, whenever possible. And during these challenging days, thanks to everyone for caring!

Photo of Blue Camas in PT Prairie by Doug Rodgers.

COVID-19 Information Features

Pandemic Reflections
How to talk to your child about the Coronavirus – Part 1
How to talk to your child about the Coronavirus – Part 2
Dr. Tom Locke Recommendations for Protesters and Caregivers

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Tom Locke by emailing ContactUs@KPTZ.org


Pandemic Reflections

Photo credit: Mike Penney

December 1, 2020. Hi, this is Dick “the Rooster“ Keenan, the host of Vinyl Dialogues here on KPTZ, and a retired clinical social worker. I have been thinking about the effects of the pandemic and want to share some of my thoughts with you.

Pandemic fatigue is mental and physical tiredness that is the result of navigating constant change and uncertainty. The long months of social distancing and quarantining contribute to feelings of isolation and loneliness. It is normal to be experiencing these feelings.

Here is one person’s experience: “All of the sudden, I felt like I was drowning in exhaustion and sadness. I could only do two things: BE and BREATHE. Sometimes, the worst thing that we can do when we’re tired is to keep doing more things.”
– BE…I gave myself the gift of just accepting who I was in that moment, even if I wasn’t in a good place. It was okay for me to not be okay.
– BREATHE…I allowed myself to concentrate on breathing. It took about an hour for me to rise back up. But as I practice “be and breathe” I knew that the feeling will pass. It will for you, too.

Then, BALANCE…Life must go on. I’ve had to re-evaluate how much I do, how fast I’ll move and how far I’ll go.

In CONCLUSION…Be gentle with yourself, friends.

The relentlessness of this pandemic has been exhausting and stressful for all of our citizens. Over the summer there was some indication that as a nation we were making some headway on the virus due to our diligence with the behavioral recommendations. Hot spots seemed to be related to increased public circulation, especially large gatherings of non-member households and an increase in virus circulation.

It would not be unusual for people to want to quit following the guidelines in the face of their exhaustion and the confusing messages played out on the media. Some of the thoughts we have all had to contend with include: I am tired of being protective; I don’t care anymore; I want my freedom/independence; the president says it is not a big deal; no one I know has died; when state governments okay the opening of bars, restaurants, gyms, and movie theaters, that means these are safe places to attend.

Likewise, when you see people socializing without wearing masks or social distancing, it looks normal and the temptation is to join in. It is increasingly hard to stick to long-term behaviors that look like all downside and no upside. That’s because the immediate gratification of socializing freely is more appealing than the constant protective measures we do day-in and day-out with the unspectacular reward of not getting the virus.

Think about these symptoms and whether they are present lately in yourself or your family:
• eat or sleep more or less than usual
• trouble focusing (brain fog)
• feel edgy or nervous
• snap at or argue with others
• lack motivation
• unable to stop racing thoughts
• withdrawing from others

The process of changing our behavior has many ups and downs. It is expected that individuals will back slide at times. These are normal reactions to the rigor and determination required to change our behavior. Rather than thinking of pandemic restrictions as something we are forced to do, we can remind ourselves that we are freely choosing these actions to help our loved ones, ourselves, and everyone in our community.

To help with stressors, here are some Healthy ways to cope and recharge your batteries:

  1. Take care of your body – exercise, sleep, meditate
  2. Limit news intake – read, play games, sort photos
  3. Lower your stress – go out in nature, take a bath
  4. Connect with others – reach out to others for your mental health and for theirs
  5. Accept your feelings – they are normal; stop and listen to yourself
  6. Try positive self-talk – I can do this
  7. Create new traditions – movie/game nights; cooking, have a child teach you something

If symptoms persist despite using various coping skills, please consider reaching out for help. A good first step is talking with your doctor about current symptoms and asking for recommendations for counseling if they don’t offer it. Remember, most of your contacts are going to be over the internet, so you will interact with a counselor from the comfort of your own home.

I hope this presentation has given you some perspective on the impact of the coronavirus on our mental health and has added some ideas to your skill set of coping mechanisms during these trying times. This is Dick “the Rooster” Keenan and my wife, Kate Keenan on KPTZ FM 91.9, saying, “Stay well and stay informed.”

COVID-19 and Kids

How to talk to your child about the Coronavirus,
from all of us at KPTZ – Part 1

April 15, 2020. Let’s talk about how to talk with children about the coronavirus. Madeline Levine, a clinical psychologist, tells the story of a boy, about 8 yrs old, asking his mother if he can have a playdate with a friend. She responds, “ OK, but I’ll only pencil it in. In case, you know, the world ends.” This seemingly lighthearted response may be confusing, or terrifying, to her son. Many parents may unknowingly communicate their own fear concerning this serious pandemic. Our fear – or discomfort – with the unknown can affect our judgement and decision making. Many of us can relate to this when we think about being in a serious situation in which we nervously laughed.

The following information about children is meant to aid parents when talking with them about the pandemic we face. Children under 5 think magically, so trying to explain the specifics of the coronavirus pandemic would not tend to comfort them. Typically, young children do as well as their parents are doing and will look to you for clues on how to react. Letting them know that you will take care of them provides comfort and a feeling of security. Use simple and matter-of-fact instructions about hand washing and social distancing to inform them that “this is how we can help ourselves and help others, and stay healthy.”

Children 5 to 10 years old have begun to think more logically but are still concrete in their way of thinking. They may lag in their understanding of abstraction or sarcasm. If they overhear someone expressing their fear about the virus they may come home saying, “Are we all going to die?” It is appropriate to state, “No, we are not all going to die. What is it you heard that makes you think that could happen?” It’s good to keep an open line of communication with your children in order to find out what they are hearing. You can correct any misinformation they might hear. It is appropriate to minimize exposure to TV news which is often overly dramatic and fear raising. It is not just what your children overhear, but more importantly, how they interpret it. 

Young adolescents (11 to 15 years old) think much more logically and can understand abstract concept – that is, the bigger picture. They are more likely to understand sarcasm, yet it is wise not to assume that they do. Adolescents are stressed just by being a teenager. You might hear your teenager say, “This sucks. I’m not staying home. None of my friends are sick.”  You can express understanding by saying, “We know you miss hanging out with your friends.” Remind them that other people, especially relatives and friends, are counting on them to stay home so that COVID-19 is not spread further into the community. This reinforces the concept that adolescents can be very self-centered but are also very socially conscious and want to help.

As parents, our task is to calm ourselves so that we don’t alarm our children with our own fears and anxiety. Limiting our exposure to all the media and news can be helpful. This particular time in the world is a great opportunity to share with our children the behaviors we all can engage in to reduce stress, such as games, meditation, walking, nature. And we can work on developing new ways, as a family. In times of uncertainty like the current pandemic, adults and children will all be stressed by the many changes that have occurred in our lives.

Some fun things to do that reduce stress are: dancing, singing (make up songs about having to stay home), making videos, drawing (children often reveal a lot of what they are feeling when they draw), painting, play wrestling, yoga, shooting baskets, kicking a soccer ball, making empty boxes into tents or caves, bicycling, cooking together, and assorted games are all fun activities that let families blow off some steam and get away from daily concerns. One of the more illuminating activities is to let your child teach you a game or concept. It’s fun for the parent and allows the child to feel that they can be in the teacher / knowledgeable role.

We hope that this information will help you to rise to the occasion during these most challenging times. Stay tuned to 91.9FM KPTZ, and stay healthy!

How to talk to your child about the Coronavirus,
from all of us at KPTZ – Part 2

May 18, 2020. Let’s talk some more about how to help children and their parents cope with the pandemic and the needs to quarantine. 

Like many difficult subjects, talking to children about the pandemic may leave parents tongue-tied and searching for words. Children are actually quite good at accepting explanations of things, as long as they can see that their parents are composed. Typically it is us, the adults, who are uncomfortable with certain subjects, such as death, mental health, divorce, pregnancy, and adoption, to name a few. 

If you are uncomfortable talking about the coronavirus and its risks, it may be helpful to have another adult to help you, or use a therapist to help discuss the issue. A classic example of this is when a child asks his or her parent where babies come from. The parent embarrassingly stumbles through some semblance of the birds and the bees lecture only to find that the child wanted to know if you got babies through Amazon. A good first step is to have the child tell you what they think. For example, you can ask, “Where do you think babies come from”? Or in this case, “What have you heard about the new virus going round?

Children under 5 years old will not understand concepts like a worldwide pandemic, death, losing your job, financial problems, and so on. Use simple language such as: the virus is a bad cold that can make you really sick and we are being asked to stay home, so that we don’t get sick, and so that others don’t get it from us. 

Children will feel more in control by knowing what they can do to help, for example: washing their hands, staying home, wearing a mask, and social distancing. Most children will have follow-up questions at some time. Keep your answers simple and try to directly address their worry or confusion. Older children can be given more advanced information, but simple is still best, depending on their maturity. It’s a good idea to check with your child to see what their understanding is of your explanation. Remind them that this is an open topic and they can talk about it any time. Think about where they are getting their news from: their friends or the internet. A good practice is for the adults to screen information from the news and inform their children in an age-appropriate manner. If you don’t know the answer to a question, you can use this as an opportunity to research together by going to a reliable source of information, such as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

The pandemic is a worldwide period of transition that we are all experiencing. Transitions happen throughout our lives and some are more stressful than others. Some common ones are; starting school, marriage, moving, teen years, loss of job, or being bullied. Our ability to navigate through these changes in our life is an example of what we mean by coping. Do we have the resources to handle this ourselves or do we need help from family or friends? Sometimes professional help is needed because we may not be coping as well as we thought.

Here are some examples of behaviors in children that may benefit from working with a therapist:
– Up to 6 years of age: loss of previously gained childhood milestones, such as, toileting, eating independently, sleep difficulty; eating more or less than usual, clinging, tantrums, crying often.
– 7 to 12 years: decline in school functioning, eating more or less than normal, isolating themselves from family or friends, poor hygiene, less cooperative, sleep issues.
– 13 to 18 years: decline in schoolwork, eat and sleep changes, isolating, oppositional behaviors, acting out with drugs, alcohol, or sex.

What you know about your child’s everyday functioning is your key to detecting changes in their behavior. This goes for adults as well. Find your inner Columbo! Being a good detective is a useful parent skill. You may not be able to visit your child’s pediatrician, or to your own doctor, but you can call in to start assessing what is going on. Doctors can rule out medical conditions, and can refer you to a therapist if needed. 

Lastly, we the adults need to monitor our own feelings and behavior. Are you more irritable lately, cranky, having less patience, feeling more anxious due to the virus and quarantine? Depression can also be a problem, as many people cannot work, and may be facing severe financial hardship. The best way to take care of your family is to take care of yourself!

You can Google “How to talk to children about the coronavirus “ for more information. Thanks for listening to 91.9FM KPTZ. Stay healthy and Stay Safe!

Dr. Tom Locke Recommendations for Protesters and Caregivers

June 18, 2020. Recently during a public broadcast of the weekly COVID-19 briefings to the Board of County Commissioners, our local Public Health Officer, Dr. Tom Locke made recommendations for any Jefferson County residents who may have participated in the ongoing Black Lives Matter demonstrations in the Seattle area. He recommended they should monitor themselves for symptoms of COVID-19, which can include cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, fever, shaking chills, headache, fatigue, body aches or sudden loss of the sense of smell or taste. This self-monitoring should occur for at least 14 days since their last exposure. This is the longest period of time it may take for symptoms to show if you have been exposed and infected. If any of these symptoms develop, testing for COVID-19 should be done.

For area residents who also take care of people at high risk for COVID-19 complications (i.e. elderly parents, nursing home residents, individuals with chronic heart or lung disease or immunosuppression), these individuals should consider being tested one week after their last exposure to a large crowd to screen for asymptomatic infection that may be spread to others.

Dr. Locke currently does not recommend testing for people who attended the Black Lives Matter protests on the Olympic Peninsula, although anyone who has been in a large crowd of people where masking is not being observed and physical distancing of 6 feet or more cannot be maintained should monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms for 14 days and get tested if they develop symptoms. COVID-19 is much less prevalent on the Olympic Peninsula in comparison to King County and the risk of transmission in large groups here is lower.

Peaceful protest is an important constitutional right and the Black Lives Matter protests are a historic opportunity to express opposition to institutional racism and police misconduct. Unfortunately, this does not lessen the risk of COVID-19 transmission in situations where large crowds gather, unmasked, speaking loudly, and being subjected to tear gas attacks (which cause intense coughing) and are in close proximity to each other. All of these factors make the recent Seattle demonstrations a high-risk exposure for COVID-19. Testing will allow those with the infection to be appropriately treated and to take the actions necessary to prevent further spread of the infection.

KPTZ’s COVID-19 Update on Monday, March 30, 2020

On Monday, March 30 at 9:45am, Dr. Tom Locke, Jefferson County Public Health Officer and Willie Bence, Director of Emergency Management provided public updates during the County Commissioners’ weekly meeting about COVID-19 and our county’s preparedness.

KPTZ broadcast via 91.9FM and streamed at KPTZ.org this timely COVID-19 information, which was also videostreamed live and recorded for online viewing any time thereafter at the Jefferson County website.

Click on the triangle above to listen to the recorded broadcast.

KPTZ’s COVID-19 Update on Monday, March 23

On Monday, March 23 at 9:45am, Vicki Kirkpatrick, Jefferson County Public Health Director, and Willie Bence, Director of Emergency Management provided public updates during the County Commissioners’ weekly meeting about COVID-19 and our county’s preparedness.

KPTZ broadcast via 91.9FM and streamed at KPTZ.org this timely COVID-19 information, which was also videostreamed live and recorded for online viewing any time thereafter at the Jefferson County website.

Click on the triangle above to listen to the recorded broadcast.

Special City & County Meeting on COVID-19 Audio ~ 3/19

On Thursday, March 19 KPTZ aired a joint meeting at City Hall of the Port Townsend City Council and the Jefferson County Board of Commissioners for their COVID-19 strategy meeting. This informative meeting featured speakers including Dr. Tom Locke of Jefferson County Public Health, Willie Bence of Jefferson County’s Emergency Operations Center, Siobhan Canty on behalf of Jefferson Community Foundation, PT Main Street, Local Investing Opportunities Network (LION), and the Port of Port Townsend. There were other speakers and comments read from our local citizenry.

Joint Meeting 3/19/20 part 1
Joint Meeting 3/19/20 part 2
Joint Meeting 3/19/20 part 3

KPTZ’s COVID-19 Update ~ 3/16

On Monday, March 16 at 9:45am, Dr. Tom Locke, Public Health Officer for Jefferson County and Willie Bence, Director of Emergency Management provided public updates during the County Commissioners’ weekly meeting about COVID-19 and our county’s preparedness.

KPTZ broadcast via 91.9FM and streamed at KPTZ.org this timely COVID-19 information, which was also videostreamed live and recorded for online viewing any time thereafter at the Jefferson County website.

Click on the triangle above to listen to the recorded broadcast.

Commissioner meetings to include Dr. Locke’s COVID-19 updates are scheduled to happen at this same time Mondays over the coming weeks. These are opportunities for all local government, members of the public, and businesses to tune at 9:45am to hear accurate public health information on COVID-19 from our Public Health Officer; and from Willie Bence on how the County is preparing both now and for the future.

KPTZ Coronavirus (COVID-19) Watch Continues

As your community radio station, KPTZ’s Emergency Team and our dedicated News crew are working on ways to keep the local public informed with updates about the fast-breaking Coronavirus (COVID-19) disease. It’s our goal to be prepared if – and, so we’re told – when any cases occur on the Olympic Peninsula. A helpful Information Sheet addressing public concerns, is available:

Update on COVID-19 and Jefferson County
(updated March 5)

Jefferson Healthcare has set up a dedicated COVID-19 Respiratory Illness Nurse Call-in Line to answer questions and address concerns regarding the virus. The Call-in Line number is 360-344-3094, and is active daily from 8am to 5pm. For contacting your health care provider, is very important to call first, before going to the doctor’s office or Emergency Department ~ unless there is an urgent health condition. [This paragraph updated March 4.]

KPTZ’s Emergency Team is in communication with both the local Department of Emergency Management and the WA Department of Health. We will continue making announcements on 91.9FM and streaming as well as posting here any pertinent information as it unfolds. Stay tuned!

WA DOH Coronavirus (Covid-19) Resources & FAQs

County Public Health Report ~ 1/19

Note: As of this day, Jefferson County now has 269 cases, with 125 cases per 100,000 population, a 3.18% case positivity. Neighboring Clallam County has 154 cases per 100,000 population with 8.5% new case positivity. Both counties remain among the lowest in both metrics in Washington.  Mason County has recorded 360 cases per 100,000 population and 19.8% positivity for new cases, with Kitsap County at 233.cases per 100,000 and 12.5% positivity.  The metrics for Mason, Kitsap, Jefferson and Clallam Counties are tied together in determining progression to the next phase of loosening restriction for re-opening under the RoadMap to Recovery statewide plan.

Today, January 19, Public Health Officer Dr. Tom Locke shared about the recent Jefferson County increase in COVID-19 cases. He answered questions from KPTZ listeners about:

Click here to read the complete message

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Tom Locke by emailing contactus@kptz.org. Note: The weekly deadline for these to be submitted is on Fridays at noon, to be answered at the following Monday’s BOCC meeting. 

County Public Health Report ~ 1/19 (contd.)

Nationally, new COVID-19 cases have risen to an all-time peak, with nearly 200,000 new COVID-19 cases reported daily, signaling a 38% increase in the last two weeks. Additionally, nearly 3,000 deaths were reported each day and approaching nearly half a million deaths since the start of this pandemic. This pattern has been repeated in many states.

Washington, as of January 18, reported a 7-day average of more than 1,800 new cases, up 27% from the previous 2 weeks, and deaths nearing 4,000 since January 2020. Cases per 100,000 population was 272 statewide in the first 2 weeks of January. Hospital admissions in the state have increased slightly, but currently remains below capacity.

As of this day, Jefferson County now has 269 cases, with 125 cases per 100,000 population, a 3.18% case positivity. Neighboring Clallam County has 154 cases per 100,000 population with 8.5% new case positivity. Both counties remain among the lowest in both metrics in Washington. Mason County has recorded 360 cases per 100,000 population and 19.8% positivity for new cases, with Kitsap County at 233.cases per 100,000 and 12.5% positivity. The metrics for Mason, Kitsap, Jefferson, and Clallam Counties are tied together in determining progression to the next phase of loosening restriction for re-opening under the RoadMap to Recovery statewide plan.

Changes are expected with the inauguration of a new administration regarding federal prevention strategies, vaccine production and availability, and policies. In the next six months, Public Health infrastructure will be appropriately funded, staff increased and science will provide the basis for these efforts.

Vaccines:

Currently, vaccine availability remains limited and Jefferson County has been vaccinating those individuals in the 1A tier, which include front-line medical workers who face heightened exposure to infectious patients and settings, as well as residents and staff in long-term living settings. Jefferson County has stepped up and used some of its vaccine supplies for the staff of these facilities when it was evident that organizations contracted to vaccinate this population were behind schedule. The residents still need vaccinations. Jefferson County has now included the 1B, Tier 1 population, which focuses on the eldest at risk of severe complications and death. Although state guidelines include a larger age band in their eligibility (over 65 years of age), Jefferson County has a disproportionate number of seniors here as compared to other counties. Only individuals 80 years and older are currently eligible for the limited supply of vaccines. About 37% of this county’s population is over 65 years of age and will take a longer time to vaccinate as compared to other counties.

Our biggest challenge in this moment is managing our expectation about when we will individually get the vaccine and what that means going forward.

Jefferson HealthCare is the main site and has scheduled 1,000 persons this week for vaccinations, about 250 a day. We have received 2,198 doses for the first doses to date, and now will use the reserved supply held for the second dose for more seniors at-risk to receive their first dose. Supplies for those needing the second dose will be used as new shipments arrive. Although supplies are limited, the state has been informed this is a temporary situation. New types of vaccines are expected to get FDA approval sometime in March and will increase availability.

Local county staff have been observing the vaccination clinic events in Sequim and Port Angeles in anticipation of events like this for Jefferson County in the near future. Currently in Jefferson County, all individuals eligible can register at one of three facilities taking appointments: Jefferson HealthCare, Safeway, and Tri-Area Pharmacy. These sites have requested residents not to call the site, but go to their websites as all these sites have critical responsibilities to fulfill and are burdened when they are diverted to calls related to vaccinations.

Another category in 1B, Tier 1 includes 50 year olds in multigenerational households and is aimed at those caretakers of elderly individuals in the same household. This has been difficult to operationalize as this information tends not to be in medical records. It is up to individuals to truthfully represent their situation if they fall into this category. The state has recently provided more clarification describing those considered in this category.

Response to Listener Questions

Organizations and businesses providing vaccinations must apply to the state and undergo a rigorous vetting due to the specific needs of these new vaccines, including storage, technical knowledge, and equity requirements, such as no out-of-pockets costs to residents.

The pandemic will not be over for the community when an individual resident gets a vaccination. We must continue to use mitigation measures to keep cases from continually rising and deaths are greatly reduced. If a vaccinated person goes to the store and does not wear a mask, they will be asked to leave as they still pose a risk. The vaccine protects a person, when infected, from progression to serious disease. This must continue until death and disease go down. As vaccinations continue, guidelines may provide some exceptions for vaccinated persons in limited circumstances. Public health leaders and scientists are trying to gather more information about infectiousness on some of these questions. As long as new case prevalence remains high, it is too risky to drop our prevention measures.

There is no need to get a COVID-19 test prior to getting vaccinated. If you are currently experiencing symptoms, are in quarantine or isolation, you should not get the vaccination, mainly to protect the medical workers and volunteers.

There is no out-of-pocket expense for the vaccination in Jefferson County, although some organizations may bill your insurance company for the cost of administration.

If you do not have insurance, you can still get the vaccine at no cost to you.

It appears these first two vaccines have slightly higher allergic reactions than other vaccinations. Non-COVID-19 vaccines typically produce 1 in 1,000,000 allergic reactions in the vaccinated population as compared to 11 in 1,000,000 for the new COVID-19 vaccines. All vaccination sites are prepared to treat individuals if reactions occur, as trained personnel watch all vaccinated individuals for 15 minutes after the shot is received. For those vaccinated with a history of reactions, they are observed between 30 and 60 minutes, depending on the facility and reported history of reactions of the patient. It is critical to report any history of reactions to past medical procedures or vaccinations to the provider giving the vaccinations. Currently, very few exceptions are listed as contraindications for these first two vaccines.

Common side effects reported from vaccine trials and those currently receiving the vaccinations are soreness at the site of injection (50%) and headaches and fatigue (50%). Side effects with the second dose may include more symptoms, including a mild fever and affect your stamina for going to work, but just for a day or so. These symptoms are recorded as side effects, but are actually a sign that your immune system is reacting to the presence of a protein it has not seen before and developing a response. If you have no side effects, Dr. Locke says you are lucky and still building a response.

Because we are grouped with Mason, Kitsap and Clallam Counties under the states RoadMap to Recovery, our progression to Phase II is dependent on our collective ability to meet the state’s health metrics over time and is influenced by each county’s local epidemic numbers. Data listed on the state’s DOH website is different and at odds with the data each county has tabulated for a variety of reasons. The local county and the state collect data from different sources, some of which have crashed recently. Our status of being in Phase I actually acts to support case suppression and currently is safer for all of us. Traditional public health interventions like case investigations and contact tracing continue to work if we collectively suppress transmission.

The professional organization for local health officers has provided input on the state’s proposed plans, but it appears this has not been taken into consideration at this point, including an effort to revamp the entire public health jurisdiction during this pandemic. Dr. Locke will testify soon at the state capitol to emphasize the importance of heeding the advice of local public health professionals, as well as the proposal to revamp a well working model of local health jurisdictions.

Continue to check the Jefferson HealthCare website as the main clearing house for updates and opportunities for vaccinations.

Willie Bence of the Department of Emergency Management (DEM) stated many people volunteered to staff the line that helps seniors get a vaccination appointment, when they have trouble getting into the JHC website or don’t have access to a computer. Their office line (360-344-9791) remains open weekdays from 9-4pm.

If you leave a message, it may be 48 hours before your call is returned due to the volume of calls. Mr. Bence encouraged all residents to use the JHC website as it will answer typical questions and is updated regularly. Also, volunteers are still needed for medical and non-medical roles as temporary emergency status.

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Tom Locke by emailing contactus@kptz.org. Note: The weekly deadline for these to be submitted is on Fridays at noon, to be answered at the following Monday’s BOCC meeting. 

KPTZ’s New Year Message

From Robert Ambrose, KPTZ Board President and DJ Host of The Rhythm Connection

On Monday, December 28, I eagerly tuned into KPTZ at 9:45am because, with the COVID-19 pandemic exponentially growing, I was hoping to hear the reasoned analysis presented by Dr. Locke every week to the Jefferson County Commissioners. But it wasn’t on! Not hearing Dr. Locke as expected was unsettling for me, and perhaps for you and many others, judging from the many calls and emails KPTZ received. There was no pandemic update because the commissioners did not meet due to the holiday, but its noted absence underlined KPTZ’s vital role keeping our community informed during local emergencies. That role is fundamental in our mission…

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County Public Health Report ~ 1/11 (contd.)

  • Nationally, new COVID-19 cases have increased by 38% in the last two weeks, a pattern driven by recent holiday travel, repeated in many states. On January 7, Washington recorded more than 4,000 new cases, up 27% from the previous two weeks. Hospital admissions due to COVID-19 have increased slightly, but have not reached capacity.  
  • As of today, Jefferson County now has 255 cases, with 122.26 cases per 100,000 population, an increase from the previous week. Case positivity has increased from 4% to 4.335% this week. Neighboring Clallam County has 113 cases per 100,000 population with 5.7% new case positivity. Both counties are among the lowest in both metrics in Washington. However, travel to and from this county remains increasingly more risky as the rise in statewide cases continues. 
  • New regional cohorts created by the state tie our individual county data to improvements in four (4) key metrics among four (4) neighboring counties before progression to the next re-opening phase occurs. The state calculates progress based on the data individual counties report in a plan entitled Road to Recovery Plan.
  • Kitsap County, with the largest population,will have the biggest impact in our cohort with respect to progressing to Phase 2 of re-opening. Progress can be followed on the state DOH website
  • Jefferson County has received 3 shipments of COVID-19 vaccine from the federal government and has administered 76% of the doses, compared to only 30% of delivered doses administered nationwide. Remaining vials are being held for the 2nd dose for persons in the 1A priority category. 
  • Jefferson County will now begin vaccinations for the 1B priority category, starting with the eldest (85 and up) among us.  A drive-through clinic, by appointment, will begin January18, with approximately 550 doses to be given that day. TriCare Pharmacy has received the Moderna vaccine, but has limited supplies, with more pharmacies applying to receive vaccines.  About 7,000 county residents are in the 70 years of age and older category in 1B and Jefferson Healthcare will administer these vaccines as they become available from the state. While supplies now are limited, Dr. Locke expects this situation to be temporary until the new administration takes office. Availability for appointments and clinics will be announced on the Jefferson Healthcare and Public Health websites.

Answers to questions submitted by KPTZ listeners:

  • Citizens are encouraged to listen to their recorded messages left by unknown callers in case it is a message left by public health contact tracers with important medical information. Citizens can also register with “Notify WA” which is a cellphone app developed for contact tracing to see if you have been near a person who now tests positive for COVID-19. About 25% of the Washington residents are enrolled. 
  • COVID-19 restrictions are not a reason to restrict use of the community warming center for the homeless.  It requires vigilant infection control practices, as the homeless population is on the lowest tier of Phase 1B for vaccinations.
  • Increased COVID-19 cases here are NOT likely due to the new coronavirus strain. But it is inevitable that we may have this strain spread here because it is more conducive to spreading easily. 
  • Safer travel beginning in the summer is dependent on the supply of vaccine, and the numbers of persons vaccinated for the greatest protection. Travel with the United States may be safer than internationally.
  • Advice on gathering with friends after completed vaccinations is premature at this time. Five percent (5%) of persons vaccinated will not develop immunity and we must follow the public health recommendations until risk of infection is mediated by mass vaccination. 
  • Forty cases in our youth is a lower percentage than in other counties, telling us that our 0-19 population has been acting responsibly. Ages are spread across the range, with our first incidence of infection in a 2 months old. 
  • No case of influenza A or B have been reported in Jefferson County, with 2 cases of Influenza B reported by the state to date.  Public health guidelines for COVID-19 are having an impact on this seasons influenza case numbers.
  • Confirmed COVID-19 cases are defined by a positive test result with the molecular PCR test and probable cases are defined by a positive result with less-sensitive, quick antigen tests.
  • The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) projection for the peak in deaths late January reflects an increased rise of the population at risk of complication when the general prevalence of COVID-19 cases increases. 
  • Gyms may now open on appointment basis only as specified in the “Road Map to Recovery” cited above with some restrictions specified depending on the square footage of the gym to accommodate distancing guidelines. 
  • All COVID-19 strains are captured by the currently available coronavirus tests. Epidemiologists are tracking the spread of new strains with sophisticated, but limited genomic testing. 
  • Essential workers listed in 1B, over 50 years of age may be dependent on verification of their status from their employers. Verification is not the purview of the health department and needs another mechanism, which has not been established as yet. 
  • Licensed massage workers are considered 1A priority category, which is defined as those who work physically close to clients, and tey can be vaccinated now. 
  • Currently, limited supplies of vaccines are expected to increase once the Biden/Harris administration is sworn in, with an aggressive rollout of supplies to the states.
  • Because the rollout to vaccinate residents and staff in congregate living settings has been slow to start, Jefferson County has used some of it’s vaccine supply to vaccinate staff at our local facilities. Current supplies of vaccines are now being used for residents. 
  • Clallam County is starting 1B vaccinations this week courtesy of the Jamestown Family Health Clinic run by the S’Kallam Tribe, who are responsible for vaccinating 1A priority residents in eastern Clallam County. 
  • Jefferson County residents should use Phase Finder and information from the local hospital to monitor availability and time for vaccination eligibility.  Dr. Locke wants everyone who makes an appointment to keep it as the supply we have right now has fragile handling limitations. 
  • The category 1B (50+ years of age in a multigenerational household) definition is being sent back to the state to be reworked.  The intent is to specify a population of elders that are more at risk in these settings.
  • Healthcare providers should not mix and match different vaccines to get to two doses. With increased funding in the recent relief bill, we will stick to the instructions of the vaccine producer according to the FDA licensing agreements. 

Department of Emergency Management Director Willie Bence reported: 

  • He is gratified by the response from retired medical professionals stepping up to assist with the vaccine rollout plans. 
  • A possible emergency waiver for current non-licensed retirees from the state is beginning to be considered. Some retired practitioners who have not renewed their license could assist in the observation area in mass vaccination clinics. 
  • Registration is the only activity at this time in preparation for mass vaccination clinics down the road.  Email any inquiries to JCDEM@co.Jefferson.wa.gov
  • Thanks to the Bainbridge Island retired medical core for assisting with vaccinations in Hadlock. 

Remember, the next Public Health update will occur on Tuesday, January 19th due to the Martin Luther King Holiday on Monday.

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Tom Locke by emailing contactus@kptz.org.

KPTZ’s Through Science to Health ~ 1/08

Today on Through Science to Health Chris Bricker, KPTZ host, and Lynn Sorensen, RN welcomed Dr. Joe Mattern of Jefferson Health Care to join our conversation regarding the ongoing response to the pandemic. Joe Mattern, MD is JHC’s Chief Medical Officer and the Medical Director for JHC’s Home Health and Hospice. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have arrived in Jefferson County and healthcare workers were the first to be offered vaccinations.

Dr Mattern is charged with the logistics of what group of community members will be next for the vaccine. And how to best notify those selected. Not everyone has internet or uses JHC’s My Chart EMR. The CDC has advisory guidelines for the people most at risk for contracting COVID-19 but it is up to the individual states/Governors to decide on the distribution of the vaccine and who is next in line.

Brewocracy Now with John Mauro ~ 1/07

Today, City Manager John Mauro and KPTZ’s Tim Quackenbush talked about:

  • Police Chief selection
  • Loss of Parks Director Alex Wisnewski
  • COVID-19 functions provided by local government and efforts to pursue reimbursement 
  • Water Infrastructure project 
  • How to become involved with community decision-making during COVID-19.

County Public Health Report ~ 1/04

Today, Public Health Officer Dr. Tom Locke Locke shared his assessment of the pandemic in Jefferson County: Nationally, new cases have leveled off, although at a very high plateau. Record deaths and new cases have been recorded nationally and statewide. The most impacted areas still are Southern California and Arizona, with ICU capacity stretched to its limits. The consensus is that the worst still lies ahead.

Washington has leveled off with nearly 2,500 new cases a day. ICU bed capacity remains available, still with the chance to still accept transfers. Locally, Jefferson County recorded 25 cases in the last two weeks, with a slightly higher 78.7 cases per 100,000 population. Recent cases reported reflect holiday gatherings of households, which drove the surge and are expected to be reflected in new cases about mid-January. To date, we remain a county with one of the lowest rates in the state.

Dr. Locke stated that although holiday travel has brought new cases to our county, transmission to other community members can be stopped by the simple effort of quarantining yourself for 14 days and monitoring for symptoms of infection.

Dr. Locke also answered questions submitted from KPTZ listeners:

  • Revisiting your POLST directives regarding use of ventilators is wise, although current treatment for COVID-19 has improved, requiring use of ventilators less likely. One can make the distinction between use in futile care versus temporary use for recovery.
  • The two primary benefits of masking are trapping secretions from the source person and filtering the air you breathe. If your nose is uncovered, you are providing a direct route to the target cells of the coronavirus. The receptor cells are present in the highest numbers in your nose. It is also a violation of state law not to cover your nose when wearing a mask.
  • President-elect Biden’s national mandate for universal masking follows the science. It slows transmission and can prevent illness and deaths.
  • New viral strains are not uncommon as it is a well-established phenomenon that viruses mutate and errors can occur during replication. However, the newly discovered more infectious strains, one in Britain and South Africa have complicated the pandemic. Nearly 50% of identified close contacts in Britain are genetically linked to this more infectious strain. New vaccine technology includes genetic material from the whole spike protein and is unlikely to thwart the current vaccine.
  • Current vaccines in use have been granted under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the FDA and are still considered experimental. Health care workers (HCWs) who have not taken the vaccine are not likely, at this point in time, to be required to be vaccinated. The vaccines are expected to “sell” themselves by their remarkable efficacy. It is expected that the hesitancy among HCWs may subside over time, but may be required when the vaccines get final approval from the FDA, as is seen with other vaccinations for infectious conditions.
  • Persons testing positive for COVID-19, without symptoms, should isolate for 10 days from the date of the test.
  • The process for establishing priority for limited supplies of vaccines has been in the works for months. CDC has an advisory committee that has produced a schematic based on the science of who is most at risk of morbidity and mortality. It is a tiered hierarchy that has been sent to all states as a guidance document. State governments have discretionary powers to make some changes based on the pandemic numbers in their respective states. In Washington, the Governor has produced a document for the 1A tier. Additional directions for 1B and 1C population specifics are expected this week. A number of issues continue to be considered and confound the timely rollout of these documents.
  • Age (over 75) is the single most independent variable of progression to serious disease and death when considering an individual’s placement in the vaccination hierarchy. Immune-suppressing health conditions at any age, or in combination with age, are a high priority.
  • The quantities of vaccines delivered to Jefferson County are highlighted at the hospital’s incident command meeting each week. As of today, 970 vaccinations have been administered, with 980 held in reserve for the upcoming second dose to be given this week as per Pfizer’s protocol. Dr. Locke states they are using the vaccines aggressively for those in the 1A tier.
  • Currently, 61% of healthcare workers in 1A have been vaccinated, with a goal of 70% fully vaccinated with two doses. Next, tier 1B and 1C will receive the first dose of the vaccine. Medical staff are waiting for the state document from the Governor’s Office for further clarification on 1B and 1C populations. By the middle of January, essential workers are expected to be vaccinated.
  • Handling requirements for the two available vaccines limits which local providers are able to provide vaccinations for the local population. Currently, we are advised to follow website information for Jefferson Healthcare for the notification process, or the Washington state DOH, listed above. All notifications are dependent upon governing documents, vaccine supplies and actual arrival of shipments.
  • The currently available vaccine (Pfizer) takes about 10-14 days to develop immunity to the virus. Pfizer’s vaccine, after the first dose alone, provides about 52% protection of developing severe disease if you are exposed and infected, with Moderna’s being higher with one dose. Vaccination with two doses of either vaccine provides 95% protection.
  • Herd immunity levels to bring this pandemic to a close needs to be about 75% of the current population in Jefferson County to be fully vaccinated.
  • Recent clinical trials of both available vaccines were not designed to study the effect on contagion or viral loads if a person becomes infected after getting the vaccine. These studies are currently being done. This requires participants in the trial, which is ongoing, to have their noses swabbed every other day, an intensive process.
  • Individuals in the 1B priority ranking are expected to be vaccinated within a few weeks. Continue to check the Jefferson Healthcare and Jefferson County Public Health websites listed above for information. A drive-thru clinic will be established in Manresa Castle parking lot and available by appointments.
  • For those households who have older individuals in different priority categories, clinical judgement should be used to vaccinate clusters within a residence, focusing on the highest risk individuals.
  • Currently, medical personnel are extracting 6 doses from each prepped vial of the Pfizer vaccine and they are on track not to waste a single dose. An on-call list has been established in the priority hierarchy if anyone misses an appointment so the dose will get used, as there is no preservative in this Pfizer vaccine.
  • A current controversy surrounds the issue of using all doses of the vaccine delivered for one dose only, then waiting until enough vaccine becomes available for a second dose to boost the immune response, as the supply becomes available. Most experts are against this variation as the clinical trials did not provide data on this scenario. If the goal is to STOP transmission, the vaccines need to be delivered on the schedule recommended by the manufacturers, Pfizer and Moderna. One possibility is that Moderna could be used this way as the dosage uses more micrograms of the genetic material than Pfizer and has good protection with the first dose.
  • Dr. Locke continues to meet every Tuesday with the local school districts. The focus remains on moving toward in-person attendance soon, with a robust plan for mitigation if and when a COVID-19 case is reported in these settings, which is expected.

Department of Emergency Management Director Willie Bence reported that area Fire and Rescue EMT’s are not currently involved in vaccine rollout, but may be in the future, but continue their regular duties. Citizens are reminded that road closure and power outages continue to pose problems and are reminded to update and refresh their emergency supplies and plans.

Mr. Bence did request any persons with medical backgrounds to please contact him to help as volunteers in the vaccination campaign. This would start the process to register as emergency workers.

Submit your Public Health questions to Dr. Tom Locke by emailing contactus@kptz.org.

Jefferson County December 2020 Case Numbers

This graph shows the monthly and cumulative number of COVID-19 infections reported in Jefferson County, from March through the end of 2020. Data source: Jefferson County Public Health Department website, graph created by KPTZ.

As of December 31, 2020 the total number of COVID-19 cases in Jefferson County was 225. There were 58 cases in December, down from the spike of 79 in November. 

KPTZ’s New Year Message

From Robert Ambrose, KPTZ Board President and DJ Host of The Rhythm Connection

On Monday, December 28, I eagerly tuned into KPTZ at 9:45am because, with the COVID-19 pandemic exponentially growing, I was hoping to hear the reasoned analysis presented by Dr. Locke every week to the Jefferson County Commissioners. But it wasn’t on! Not hearing Dr. Locke as expected was unsettling for me, and perhaps for you and many others, judging from the many calls and emails KPTZ received. There was no pandemic update because the commissioners did not meet due to the holiday, but its noted absence underlined KPTZ’s vital role keeping our community informed during local emergencies. That role is fundamental in our mission.

The past year has been the most disturbing and challenging in our recent history. We at KPTZ believe we provide an essential service for our community, and I am proud of our tiny staff and many volunteers for stepping up to meet pandemic challenges. Through extraordinary dedication, our many program hosts have continually provided you with solace and stimulation, letting everyone know they are not alone during this most lonely, isolated time. Our exceptional volunteer news team has expanded daily local news offerings to every weekday at 12 and 5pm to help keep you informed.

In addition to live public meeting broadcasts like Dr. Locke’s presentations, we present the Port Townsend City Manager every Thursday for your questions. KPTZ also has been steadily increasing its support for many local service organizations, by giving them voice through public service announcements and interviews, and more recently via media partnerships to amplify worthy campaigns and activities.

Notably, despite many challenges, KPTZ is moving forward with its ambitious project to build new studios at Fort Worden. Construction is nearly complete, and so is a lease that will give us stability for at least 19 years. We hope to celebrate moving into our new home by late summer, if indeed vaccinations and rational public behavior are able to quell the pandemic.

We would not have been able to do any of this without your support. Thank you!!

However the pandemic has prevented us from doing normal community radio fund-raising, the perhaps-stale week-long on-air drives that traditionally have provided over 80% of our revenue. That $30,000 hole in our budget now needs to be filled, and I am asking you to please consider making your new year contribution to KPTZ a generous one.

Contributions may be made online at the Donate link above, and we love receiving checks in the mail as well: KPTZ, PO Box 2091, Port Townsend WA 98368. If you are interested in directing an annual distribution or a stock donation to KPTZ, we can describe the tax advantages and help you. Feel free to email me personally.

Thank you immensely for your support.

I hope you and yours are staying safe and well.
With best wishes for a safe and peaceful new year,

Robert Ambrose
President, KPTZ Board of Directors
Host, Rhythm Connection (Tuesdays 1-3pm)

Credit for collage art: Lynn Sorensen, photo by Buzzy Donahue

#167 Lance Bailey

(First airdate: December 29, 2020) PLANNING PT’S PRESENT & FUTURE. Our Town host Maryanne McNellis interviews Lance Bailey, the Development Services Director for the city of Port Townsend. His department issues permits for all projects – large and small. Remodeling your kitchen? Building a large apartment building? Talk to Lance and his team. Contrary to popular wisdom, there are at least two apartment buildings about to be green-lighted. Housing accessibility is a huge problem around here. The COVID-19 crisis has heightened the problem – house prices are skyrocketing. People from the big cities and even “climate refugees” (people fleeing the massive wildfires) are desperate to move to small picture-perfect places like this. But we have to get broadband to the end of the road. Planning our future is almost impossible.