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Where I Stand: Slowly getting better – Plumas business outlook for 2021

By Ken Donnell

Owner MusicLand, Greenville CA

While 2021 is having a rough start, I am confident that local businesses and citizens will begin to see improvement as we move further into 2021. There is likely to be a more coordinated and science based approach to the pandemic from the new Biden administration, and there should be substantial financial help to individuals and businesses from a variety of Covid-19 relief programs. Best of all, vaccinations, combined with warmer weather, leads me to believe we will have a great 2021 tourist season in Plumas County.

I find it almost unbelievable that simple safety behavior, such as wearing face coverings in public, have become political issues in the USA. Our national response to the pandemic has often been driven as much by conspiracy theories as by sound science and medicine. This has robbed us of a most valuable tool to combat this pandemic – team spirit – where everyone works together under wise and consistent leadership to support the common good. With team spirit, everyone is prepared and willing to make reasonable  sacrifices for the benefit of the whole team. If someone asks me to put on a face covering, I view this request as a favor to help me be more safe from Covid-19, and to maintain better safety for everyone around me. I admit that following safe behavior to avoid infection is difficult for all of us. It is so easy for any of us to relax, forget, and backslide into unsafe behavior. We all need to “have each other’s backs” as friends and neighbors.

In World War ll , every American made sacrifices, regardless of wealth, social status, or ideology to fight our common enemies. We were united, and working together with many other nations, we quickly achieved victory. I sincerely hope that in 2021, we can come together as a nation to fight this common enemy of Covid-19. We are all in this pandemic together, and we need to begin acting more in unison to put the needs of our society first, and our personal desires second. Such selfless citizens are the true patriots we need in this dark winter of sickness and death.

There are many covid-19 financial relief programs now available to citizens and businesses across California and the USA.  Some of this relief will come automatically to mailboxes and bank accounts, but other programs require registration and applications.   I encourage every business owner to not delay in seeking such Covid-19 economic relief, which takes the form of low interest loans, forgivable loans, and freely given grants.  Plumas News has done an excellent job to keep us informed of many Covid-19 relief programs, and I am confident more useful information will follow soon..

The 2021 tourist season will likely bring many new and returning tourists to Plumas County. While I hope the pandemic will be in decline by June, it will still be far from over. “Drive to vacations,” and vacations which occur out of doors will probably be the first choice for most Americans. Any tourist-related business in Plumas County would be wise to make preparations for operating at overflow capacity in 2021.

But, this influx of tourists will also bring the possibility of a new surge of infections later in 2021. Everyone in Plumas County needs to stay well informed about the ongoing national, regional, and local status of the pandemic. We must remain vigilant, and be prepared to adjust our behavior and activities to conform to the realities of Covid-19.    We must be careful to avoid having our best made plans lead us into activities which result in a new surge of local infections, and more local deaths.  As Dr. Fauci wisely stated:  “It is the pandemic which sets the timeline for our activities”.

We must remember that Covid-19 has already shown its ability to mutate, and possibly into more virulent or easily transmitted strains. The scientific and medical community is watching closely for such dangerous mutations, and all Americans need to pay careful attention to any warnings from these authorities about future mutations.

Let us proceed into 2021 with cautious optimism.  Let’s make plans for a fun, safe, and busy summer and fall season.  At the same time, let us follow the leadership of local, state, and national scientific-medical authorities to practice safe behavior.  Who among us wants to be the last person in Plumas county infected with Covid-19.

Please … stay safe, stay sane, & keep hope alive.



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