WATCH: Santa Clara Co. to Ramp Up Public Health Enforcement Over the Holiday Weekend

Amid record coronavirus case counts and diminishing hospital capacities, Santa Clara County will ramp up public health inspections at local businesses over the holiday weekend and eliminate grace periods for fines.

From Thursday through Sunday, county compliance staff will visit high-traffic shopping areas to address violations of public health mandates.

And unlike before, when the enforcement team allowed businesses to correct issues in lieu of paying fines, financial penalties will not be waived.

Additionally, retail businesses must abide by the statewide 10pm-to-5am curfew, officials said. Grocery stores and take-out dining are exempt from the time limit, however.

The county’s Business Compliance Unit will focus on social distancing protocols and capacity limitations required by the public health order.

Fines start around $250 and can go into the thousands of dollars for repeat offenders.

“We know holiday shopping is critical to our Santa Clara County businesses,” County Counsel James Williams said. “If people are shopping in person, we want the experience to be as safe as possible for employees and the public. Given the rising case counts, it is absolutely vital that everyone carefully and rigorously abide by the health orders.”

Current health mandates require grocery stores to limit capacity to 50 percent. Other retailers must reduce capacity to 25 percent.

“The primary issue we’re seeing right now is capacity limits,” said Michael Balliet, head of Community and Business Engagement for the county. “Business must maintain set limits inside their stores and strictly enforce face covering and social distancing. Additionally, customers should be looking for the orange checkmark sign in front to ensure a proper business plan has been approved.”

To report violations, go to


  1. If I had a business and the health department comes in and bothers me then I am going to push the health department right out the door.

  2. Way to go SJI!

    Advocating for me to snitch out my neighbors.

    Will there be fabulous prizes for me to win?

  3. The above commentators appear to be out and proud members of the Trump/Republican death cult (, infesting the comments section spewing provocation, bile and ignorance. In an earlier era, they would have been among the first in line for afternoon Kool Aid refreshers in Jonestown ( They combine a homicidal attitude toward people vulnerable to corona virus contagion with open incitement, including incitement to violence, against public health authorities seeking to minimize potential harm to the public.

    The way to clinically treat sociopaths is to: 1) acknowledge that they may not be able to fully understand your emotions; 2) explain to them how their behavior affects others and causes harm; 3) make our boundaries explicitly clear to them; 4) offer specific consequences for harmful behaviors
    ( Let’s keep these recommendations in mind as we move forward.

  4. Facendo Guaio:

    You have made your stance on my freedoms VERY clear.

    You have also exposed the Socialist agenda and how wonderful and benevolent it is.

    Wrong speech/thought will be punished.

    Do you advocate for sending me to the Gulag?

    How about a camp with ‘Funny Showers’?

    Maybe I will just disappear in the middle of the night only to be dug up a generation later with 10,000 other bodies of those who THINK the wrong way.

    I only ask of you one thing:
    That you, Facendo Guaio, are the first one through the door when you and your fellow Socialist goons come to make an example of me.

    Lotsa love,
    And God bless


  5. In the minds of sociopaths, psychopaths and even some libertarians, regulating public behavior in order to protect the public from physical danger is synonymous with a police state, a state of “unfreedom.”

    Thus, briefly detaining me and my vehicle at road intersections through the use of painted metal signs and electric traffic signals; forcing me and my vehicle to stay within a lane designated by painted lines on the surface of roads and highways; forcing me to park my vehicle on the side of the road and not in the middle of the road; forcing me to register said vehicle and to buy insurance for same; prohibiting me from taking a stroll on the Bayshore Freeway; forcing me to evacuate my home due to an approaching forest fire or forcing me to stay in my home to avoid harm from a tornado; forcing me to drink water disinfected with chlorine ( and/or water that is fluoridated (; requiring me to vaccinate my children so as not to endanger their health and to protect other children in the schools they attend; and requiring me to cover my face to avoid infecting others in public places amount to coercion or “socialism,” not prudent public policies practiced the world over and understood by competent adults as part and parcel of living in a modern urban society.

    My freedom to swing my fists stops at your nose. Your freedom to fling unglued and paranoid figments about “socialist” gulags and showers stops at their exposure to air and light–the most powerful disinfectants for bacterial demagoguery and conspiracy-spinning.

  6. The irony of you calling someone who disagrees with you(and the need for their punishment) a Sociopath is rather entertaining.

    “Your freedom to fling unglued and paranoid figments about Socialist gulags and showers……..”

    This from the person who just got finished telling me that disagreeing with his agenda is wrong and will be punished under force of law.

    As for ‘paranoid figments’, State abuse of the people are well documented in history and Chinese incarceration and slave labor of wrong thinking goes on as we speak.

    In your little kingdom, what punishments should be meted out to comrade Gavin and comrade Nancy? They keep driving it into our heads that this killer virus is leading to countless deaths while they are in front of a camera.
    And yet, in private, their actions are far different. Are you suggesting that our royal couple are sociopaths and worthy of your ‘specific consequences’?

    You like to use the word ‘force’ a lot. It really hits home in the sentence where you would ‘force’ me to drink water provided by the state. If I don’t like the water they provide I won’t drink it. I can find alternatives. Unless the state decides that I can only drink ‘their’ water.

    The good people of Flint, Michigan are forced to pay for water that is so toxic as to be unusable. Those that refuse to drink it or demand clean alternatives are sociopaths and therefore, must be punished.

    You insist I bow before the State, for my own ‘good’. What you are actually demanding is I bow to you and your views of the world(the term ‘Karen’ comes to mind).

    In a pig’s eye.

    Your move, Comrade.

  7. Less than 1/10th of 1% of Californians have died of COVID-19, per the official State website.

    How many have had their lives upended, lost their jobs and been negatively impacted by a virus that primarily affects those that otherwise would have succumbed to influenza?

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