Two familiar faces on the Central and South Coasts will be returning to Washington, D.C. for new congressional terms, but a third race in the region is still up in the air.

24th District Democratic Congressman Salud Carbajal of Santa Barbara easily won re-election.  Carbajal defeated Republican challenger Andy Caldwell by a 62% to 38% margin.  It will be Carbajal’s third term in office.

A judge has found a Ventura County gym in contempt of court for violating the county’s COVID-19 safety restrictions.

The judge found BSF Fitness of Ventura in content for 19 violations of a court-ordered preliminary injunction against indoor operations.  This comes on top of past contempt rulings against BSF.

There’s good news for some small businesses, and non-profits in Ventura County which were hard hit by coronavirus.  The County’s Business Assistance Program is going to fund a second round of grants.

So far, more than 5000 businesses, and non-profits applied for help, and 777 have received $5,000 checks.  The program is now going to fund all of the remaining eligible applicants.  County officials say it means more than 3700 small businesses and non-profits will be getting $5,000 grants.

The U.S. Forest Service is now saying that the closure of the Los Padres National Forest, as well as eight others National Forests statewide is indefinite.

The forests were shut down in early September because of the string of wildfires hitting the state, and the ongoing high fire danger.  The closures mean that campgrounds and trails are completely closed to the public.

Eight additional coronavirus deaths have been reported on the Central and South Coasts, with the region’s total now topping the 250 mark.

Santa Barbara County is reporting four new deaths, Ventura County three, and San Luis Obispo County one. Ventura County has had a total of 129 deaths, Santa Barbara County 103, and San Luis Obispo County 23.

(Ventura County Fire Department photo)

A man has been arrested on an arson charge following a brush fire which caused a scare in Ventura County.

The fire was discovered Wednesday afternoon on a hillside near Forest Drive, just outside of Santa Paula.  Firefighters aided by aircraft were able to protect some nearby buildings.  It burned about three acres of brush before it was fully contained.

The number of new coronavirus cases across the state, and on the Central and South Coasts continues to mushroom.

Some 12,800 new cases were reported statewide Wednesday.  In our region, 278 additional cases were documented, including 94 in Ventura County, 160 in Santa Barbara County, and 24 in San Luis Obispo County.

The spike in confirmed coronavirus cases on the Central and South Coasts continues, with 283 new cases reported Wednesday.  The growing numbers have health officials worried.  8636 cases have now been documented on the Central and South Coasts.

Ventura County had 125 new confirmed coronavirus cases Wednesday, bringing its total to 3983. Santa Barbara County increased by 121, to 3808.  And, San Luis Obispo County had a daily hike of 37, to 845 cases.

The overall number of diagnosed coronavirus cases on the Central and South Coasts sailed past the 7000 mark Thursday, with more than 280 new cases reported in the region.

The current total is 7190 cases.  Ventura County has 3240 cases, Santa Barbara County 3275, and San Luis Obispo County’s updated total is 675 cases.  Most of those diagnosed with the virus have already recovered.

The continuing surge in new coronavirus cases in California prompted the governor to order new restrictions for restaurants, and other sectors of the economy in 19 of the state’s counties, including Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties.

Two out of the three counties on the Central and South Coasts have reported big surges in new coronavirus cases.  Ventura County reported 186 new cases Tuesday, and San Luis Obispo County 44.  Santa Barbara County didn’t update its numbers Tuesday because of a data system upgrade.

Ventura County health officials say there’s been a large scale coronavirus outbreak at a farmworkers housing facility in Oxnard.

95 positive cases have been reported, with tests on 100 other people still pending.  The workers are in their 20’s and 30’s, and have had mild symptoms.  None of those who tested positive are reported to be seriously ill.  Residents of the housing complex are being placed under quarantine or isolation, depending on their test results.

California has seen the biggest one day surge in new coronavirus cases since the start of the crisis, and the Central and South Coasts are part of it. 

There have been five additional coronavirus related deaths, and more than 300 new diagnosed coronavirus cases on the Central and South Coasts.

Three new deaths are linked to a coronavirus outbreak at a senior care facility in Santa Barbara County, bringing the total there to nine.  County health officials say the latest deaths at the Country Oaks Care Center in Santa Maria were all people in their 70’s.  Ventura County had one additional death, a person in their 90’s with preexisting health conditions.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases on the Central and South Coasts continues to grow, now topping the 4500 mark.  4559 cases have now been diagnosed in the region.

Santa Barbara County is at 2320 cases, up 67 from Thursday. 

Santa Barbara County Health officials say they are concerned, because there’s been an increase of 50 cases or more a day in the county for the last week.