More normalcy returning, expanding in-person services, dress code, cybersecurity, staff kudos

The governor announced Tuesday that everything is on track for the state to fully reopen on June 15. Looking around the country, other states either have already reopened for business or have plans to do so soon. Here are details on the state’s plan, what is referred to as “Beyond the Blueprint.”

In keeping with new health guidelines, we are continuing to expand in-person services. Here are the latest changes:

May 1

Outdoor gatherings at park picnic areas and open space expanded to groups of up to 50 people

May 10

Libraries open an extra two hours on the days they are open

Georgina Cole Library

Monday and Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Dove Library and Learning Center

Tuesday and Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Curbside service available Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Cannon Art Gallery open an extra two hours Tuesday and Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

May 15

Community centers with gyms increase occupancy to 25%

Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park historic structures occupancy increases to 50%

May 17

Community centers with gyms expand hours to Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. (25% occupancy)

May 24

All libraries open six days a week and occupancy increases to 50%

Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Cannon Art Gallery operating hours expanded to Thursday through Saturday (occupancy increases to 50%, new exhibit opens June 13)

May 25 Sculpture Garden (next to the community garden by City Hall and the Cole Library) welcomes first new exhibit in over a year.

We are making preparations to return City Council meetings to an in-person format, and other public-facing services are planning to expand soon, too.


Learn more about the city’s new telecommuting options I shared last week. Our goal with this program is to provide greater flexibility to our workforce while maintaining the highest level of service to our community and a strong sense of teamwork among city staff. Your directors will give you more details about how telecommuting will work in your areas.

Pandemic chic

With many staff working from home this past year, the “business on top, casual on the bottom” version of pandemic chic has replaced the city dress code for many of us. Now that we’re preparing to return to the office, at least in part, some have asked if we’ll be updating our city dress code going forward. Here’s the latest on that.

Whether on a video call or in the office, professional work attire is still required. For most employees, this includes business casual for everyday work and more formal business attire for City Council meetings and other similar settings. For those of you who wear uniforms, the uniform will be proper attire unless you are expected to wear professional attire for any prescheduled meetings, such as a City Council meeting.

In a nutshell, we will be going back to our standard city dress code. What is that exactly? Due to the diversity of jobs city employees perform, the city dress code can’t take a one size fits all approach (sorry, I couldn’t help it). However, here is some general guidance:

  • Please save your workout gear, yoga pants, hoodies, crop tops and graphic tees for your off time.

  • Dress jeans could be appropriate, depending on your job and work location. Faded or ripped jeans are not.

  • Sandals could work in the summertime, flip flops cannot.

The bottom line is that we want city employees to appear professional at all times. Use your good judgment and ask HR or your department director for guidance if needed.

Employee cases

Even as we talk about returning to the workplace and more and more of California’s economy reopening, it’s important we don’t let our guard down yet. We must continue to protect ourselves and those around us from COVID-19. Thanks to your diligence, we have had no new employee cases of COVID-19 over the last week.

The city has gone above and beyond the required health precautions for our facilities, and the individual facility safety plans are available on the intranet. Please continue to complete the mandatory health screening at the entrances of all city buildings, mask up, wash your hands and maintain distance from others.

Evening vaccine hours now available

Starting today, county-hosted COVID-19 vaccine sites are open for walk-up, no-appointment-required vaccinations. San Diego County also announced that starting today, three of its vaccination sites will start offering evening hours for people with and without appointments. The location closest to Carlsbad is:

Oceanside Sunday to Thursday, 1 to 8 p.m. North Coastal Live Well Health Center 1701 Mission Ave.

Check out vaccine sites here. Here are answers to other COVID-19 FAQs you may have.

Cybersecurity attack in the news

Scripps Health is in the news this week as the most recent victim of a cyberattack. Their technology servers were hacked over the weekend, forcing the health care system to switch to offline chart systems and causing a disruption to their patient portals.

This is an important reminder of the reality that we could be next. We all need to be highly vigilant in our communication and online activities:

  • Stay on a private, secured Wi-Fi network. Avoid using public Wi-Fi and do not use public computers for work.

  • Do not visit websites or follow links provided by unknown sources.

  • Think before clicking hypertext links contained in emails or attachments, especially from sources you do not trust.

  • Report all suspicious emails by using the “Report Phish” or “Report Email” icon on your Outlook toolbar. Err on the side of over-reporting!

Cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility. Don’t be fooled – stay vigilant against cybersecurity threats.

Poinsettia Lane now open

Last Thursday we held an official ribbon cutting ceremony with the City Council to celebrate the completion of a one mile stretch of Poinsettia Lane, east of El Camino Real. With the “missing link” complete, you can now go all the way to the coast on Poinsettia Lane, by car, on foot or on a bike. The new road segment has wide sidewalks and bike lanes with a buffer to create space between passing cars and cyclists.

Special consideration was given to the surrounding habitat, including designing a bridge that allows wildlife to safely pass underneath. Bat roosts are attached to the pillars of the bridge too. The surrounding landscape is irrigated with recycled water, as another way to help conserve natural resources.

This was our first in-person city event since the pandemic hit – pretty exciting stuff! Kudos to our Public Works team members who dedicated years of hard work to ensure this project became a successful reality that will improve the quality of life of our residents for years to come! Here’s a video with a recap of the ribbon cutting ceremony.

Bold new approach to combat homelessness

The City Council recently made it a top priority and set a goal to reduce homelessness by 50% in five years. City staff worked very quickly to develop a range of options for new programs and initiatives to help combat homelessness for City Council’s consideration. Last week, City Council approved a complete package of initiatives.

Under the direction of a new Housing & Homeless Services Department, the city will create bridges to permanent housing, while two new officers in the Police Department’s Homeless Outreach Team will help address resident concerns about unlawful activity.

In the coming weeks, staff will host a series of virtual town hall meetings on homelessness in each City Council district to share information about the city’s upcoming initiatives and gather input from the community that will help shape the implementation of the new programs.

Kudos to all staff involved on this major milestone and next step to help address one of the issues that is very top of mind for our community!

Thank you all for your continued dedication and hard work during this time. As we transition back to the workplace, please continue to support one another and take good care of yourselves. I’m so proud of all we have accomplished over this past year and more than confident we’ll continue to provide top quality service while becoming an even strong team due to the experiences we have shared over the past year.