Business Services2020-10-20T17:54:53-07:00

Business Services

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Riverside County Moves Back into Purple Tier for Next 21 Days – On October 20, 2020, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced that Riverside County will move back to the state’s Purple Tier, which is the most restrictive tier that requires several types of businesses and places of worship to move outdoors only, with a 72-hour time frame to adjust operations.

The State’s decision to move Riverside County back to the Purple Tier is due to the County’s Covid-19 metrics of 5.2 positivity rate and 9.1 case rate. While the positivity rate is within the Red Tier range, the case rate – cases per 100,000 people – is within the Purple Tier. Riverside County’s case rate is also worsened by the State’s upwards adjustment for not reaching the statewide median of PCR swab tests.

The following businesses will revert back to a modified Purple Tier operating outdoors:

For a complete list of businesses and status, go to

  • Schools that have already opened for in-person instruction may continue to do so. Schools and school districts that have not already opened for in-person instruction will need to obtain a waiver, approved by the Riverside County Public Health Officer and CDPH. For a complete list of all schools that have applied for, or received approval for, a waiver, visit org/SchoolWaiver.
  • Small private gatherings are allowed outdoors with modifications:
    • Masks and physical distancing required
    • No more than 3 separate households attend (including the host’s)
    • Gatherings should be 2 hours or less
    • Those with symptoms must not attend
    • Those at high risk of severe illness strongly encouraged not to attend
    • Singing, shouting, chanting, or exercising strongly discouraged

Riverside County will remain in the Purple tier for at least three weeks before it can move to the Red Tier once its COVID-19 metrics return to that lower range.

The state has also updated guidance allowing personal care services in all tiers to remain open indoors with modifications, including:

  • Esthetic and skin care services
  • Electrology services
  • Nail services
  • Body art professionals, tattoo parlors, and piercing shops
  • Massage services (in non-healthcare settings)

Click here to view guidance and checklist

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

The State of California approved Riverside County to move into the next phase of reopening pursuant to the “Blueprint for a Safer Economy,” California’s color-coded, four-tier system that allows different levels of reopening based on a county’s positivity rate — the rate at which COVID-19 tests come back positive — and its rate of new coronavirus cases.
Riverside County will move from the most restrictive purple tier to red, which allows for the reopening of the following businesses with limited indoor operations:
  • Restaurants indoors (max 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer)
  • All retail indoors (max 50% capacity)
  • Shopping centers indoors (max 50% capacity, closed common areas)
  • Museums, zoos, and aquariums indoors (max 25% capacity)
  • Places of worship indoors (max 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer)
  • Movie theaters indoors (max 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer)
  • Gyms and fitness centers indoors (max 10% capacity)
There are no changes for hair salons and barbershops, family entertainment centers, offices, and cardrooms.
In order for schools to reopen for in-person classes, the county would have to remain in the red tier for at least two weeks.

COVID-19 Temporary Use Permit – Outdoor Commercial Uses

In response to the economic impacts of COVID-19, the City Council authorized the relief of certain Zoning Ordinance requirements for temporary uses and commercial signage to allow businesses in commercial zones to continue to offer goods and services in compliance with State and County mandates relative to COVID-19. Examples of uses that qualify for this TUP include, but are not limited to, outdoor dining, outdoor retail, outdoor exercise/yoga classes, and outdoor salon/barbers.

Click here for guidelines and application.



Effective immediately and pursuant to the September 3, 2020 emergency COVID-19 Order in the City of Rancho Mirage, all short-term rental certificate holders, and those otherwise operating a short-term rental shall:

(1) be required to post, upon entry to the subject property, a city furnished flyer stipulating the State and local face-covering requirements;

(2) That the overnight occupancy limit of a short-term rental, which is set forth in Rancho Mirage Municipal Code Section 3.25.070 (Operational requirements and Standards conditions) shall be in effect twenty-four (24) hours a day, and that the daytime occupancy limit set forth in said section (which would otherwise allow for a greater number of occupancy) is suspended; and

(3) That current City ordinances which may allow subletting and/or owners who occupy the main house to rent out a casita or other detached structure is hereby immediately suspended, so that (without limiting the generality of the foregoing) no subletting shall be allowed, and owner(s) and/or any/all of their related parties (e.g. family, guest(s),etc.) shall not be allowed at the property while it is being rented out as a short-term rental.

Violation of this Order shall be subject to all the remedies set forth in Title 14 and Chapter 3.25 (Short-Term Rentals) of the Rancho Mirage Municipal Code, including without limitation a misdemeanor offense, and the remedies set forth therein shall be cumulative and in addition to any and all other remedies, civil, equitable or criminal, afforded to the City under State and Federal laws.

This Order shall become effective immediately and terminate on December 4, 2020, unless terminated earlier or extended by the City Manager/Director of Emergency Services or the City Council.

Download the City’s Face Covering flyer here

The State of California Orders Closure of all indoor operations effective July 13, 2020:

ALL counties must close indoor operations in these sectors:

  • Dine-in restaurants
  • Wineries and tasting rooms
  • Movie theaters
  • Family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys, miniature golf, batting cages and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Cardrooms

Additionally, bars, brewpubs, breweries, pubs must close all operations both indoor and outdoor statewide, unless they are offering sit-down, outdoor dine-in meals. Alcohol can only be sold in the same transaction as a meal.

Counties that have remained on the County Monitoring List for 3 consecutive days will be required to shut down the following industries or activities unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up.

  • Gyms and fitness centers
  • Places of worship and cultural ceremonies, like weddings and funerals
  • Offices for non-critical infrastructure sectors
  • Personal care services, like nail salons and body waxing
  • Hair salons and barbershops
  • Shopping malls

Shops that offer tattoos, piercings and electrolysis may not be operated outdoors and must close.

For more information, please visit

Guidance for the operation of outdoor dining and personal care services is available at




Find the latest information on what businesses are permitted to operate currently in Riverside County, along with helpful resources, financial assistance for businesses and more, at

The State of California Orders Closure of all indoor dining and indoor activities for three weeks

On July 1, the State of California ordered the closure of all indoor dining and activities in 19 counties, including Riverside County for at least three weeks, until further order by the State and County. Businesses ordered to cease indoor operations include the following sectors:

  • Indoor Dine-in restaurants (Outdoor dining service & take-out/delivery are permitted)
  • Indoor Wineries and Tasting Rooms
  • Indoor Family Entertainment Centers
  • Indoor Movie Theaters
  • Indoor Zoos and Museums
  • Indoor Cardrooms

Religious services, outdoor zoos and museums are not included in the this new order.

To view the California Department of Public Health’s press release, click here.

Riverside County Offers Small Business Grant

Riverside County has just launched Round 2 of the Covid-19 Business Assistance Grant Program!
More businesses are now eligible for $10,00 grants including:
  • Sole proprietors with no employees
  • Businesses that have received the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (Advance)

Click image to enlarge

Eligible use of funds include:

Payroll/Employee retention
Working Capital
Purchase of personal protective equipment (PPE)
Rent or mortgage payments
Paying vendor invoices

Grants are awarded on a first-come, first served basis.  Applications will be accepted on June 29 at 5:00 p.m. until August 31, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.

For more information or to apply, please visit

On June 2, 2020, the Riverside County Board of Supervisors passed two critical pieces of legislation to assist small businesses and landlords affected by the COVID-19 pandemic:

Small business grant program allocating $50 million for direct grants to small businesses. The deadline for applications is June 19, 2020. This will be done by a lottery system, not on a first come first serve basis. For information on eligibility and program guidelines, please go to:

  • A $33 million rental assistance program to provide direct cash payments to landlords for residents experiencing rental delinquencies due to the COVID 19 pandemic. The City will send out specific details of this program when finalized by the County.  Click here to view the Desert Sun Article about the program.
    The City will continue to keep residents and businesses up-to-date on COVID-19 assistance programs and resources.

County Of Riverside Closing All Brewpubs, Breweries, Bars & Pubs Until Further Notice

Brewpubs, breweries, bars, and pubs not offering sit-down and dine-in meal service, shall close effective June 30, 2020 at 2:01 a.m. Bar areas in dine-in restaurants that cannot follow the dine-in restaurant guidance shall also remain closed. These establishments will be allowed to resume operation only when state guidance and local permission permit so.

The CDPH Guidance on Bar Closures can be found at:

To view the full County of Riverside Order, click here.

Stage 2 – Business Opening.  The state has issuing guidance to help these workplaces reopen safely.

Cooling Centers
Dine-in restaurants
Hair salons
Outdoor museums
Places of worship
Shopping centers

Short-Term Rental Moratorium:

The City of Rancho Mirage’s Short-Term Rental (STR) Moratorium expired on June 30, 2020, and all STR certificate holders will be allowed to resume operation on July 1, 2020. It is critical that short-term rentals adhere to the State guidelines for their operation, including but not limited to:

  • Establish a property-specific written COVID-19 prevention plan.
  • Establish routine and thorough cleaning and disinfecting protocols between guests.
  • Educate guests on the COVID-19 prevention protocols you have implemented for your property, prior to their arrival.
  • Requirement for face coverings when employees are present with guests at the property.

A complete copy of the State’s guidance for Short-Term Rentals is available here.

It is also critical to adhere to the new statewide requirement for face coverings with limited exceptions, available here.

All questions about the STR Moratorium must be directed to the Code Compliance Division by emailing or by calling (760) 770-3220.

Chamber of Commerce


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NEW Resources: Open and Share

County residents who lost employment because of the coronavirus epidemic may receive up to $800 in job loss benefits thanks to a $252,000 state grant received by the Riverside County Workforce Development Division.

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