All public counters in California remain closed at this time.
SACRAMENTO – The Contractors State License Board (CSLB) is announcing that seven of its eight test centers around California will reopen today Monday, June 15, 2020. Most of the centers will have expanded hours each day to accommodate an additional test session for applicants.
The test centers, located in Berkeley, Fresno, Norwalk, Oxnard, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, and San Jose, closed on March 19, 2020 to help limit the spread of COVID-19. All test centers with exception of Berkeley will open next Monday.
CSLB staff have remained on-duty during the test center shutdown, processing license applications and assisting applicants in their efforts to prepare for their licensing exams. Most applicants must take and pass two exams for licensure. It is typical to have about 4,500 pending exams. While closed, the number of exams waiting to be taken grew to more than 9,000.
It will take some time to get these numbers down, as we will operate with reduced testing capacity to comply with physical distancing requirements. To make up for lost seats, CSLB has turned its Sacramento headquarters hearing room and a conference room at its Norwalk office into auxiliary test centers.
Even so, the number of tests CSLB will be able to administer each day will be 10% less than before the COVID-19 health emergency.
CSLB is taking special steps to make sure test centers are safe for both applicants and staff. They include disinfecting test stations after each candidate finishes their exams.
There are two important items of note for candidates:
Be sure to include your phone number and other relevant information, such as license number, application fee number, and any other information that will help staff provide you a thorough response.
To Reschedule a Cancelled Exam: Exams@cslb.ca.gov
Be sure to include your name and application number. Please note that CSLB is waiving the rescheduling fee for cancelled exams.
Earlier this week, San Francisco, in tandem with five other Bay Area counties — Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo and Santa Clara — announced extensions "through May" to their respective shelter-in-place orders.
SRBX has written a joint letter to each of the Bay Area Public Health Directors detailing the enhance safety protocols and CDC guidelines that construction sites are implementing and urged each county to align with state orders by recognizing all construction as “essential” and include all aspects of construction to their revised orders. Read letter here.
Governor Newsom Outlines Six Critical Indicators the State will Consider Before Modifying the Stay-at-Home Order
Newsom unveiled six key indicators that will guide California’s thinking for when and how to modify the stay-at-home and other orders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
California’s six indicators for modifying the stay-at-home order are:
The Governor said there is not a precise timeline for modifying the stay-at-home order, but that these six indicators will serve as the framework for making that decision. Newsom has issued 29 executive orders since March – you can see the list here.
URGENT: Essential businesses in Sacramento County required to implement social distancing protocols.
On April 7, 2020, the County of Sacramento released an updated Stay at Home Order. In this updated order, all construction remains as a designated “essential industry,” but an important directive was added.
All essential businesses must prepare a “Social Distancing Protocol.” To facilitate this protocol, the Sacramento County Department of Public Health included an example of a Social Distancing Protocol form appended to the order.
A copy of your company’s protocol must be provided to each employee and businesses must provide evidence of its implementation to any authority enforcing the Order.
SRBX recommends all members utilize the suggested protocol furnished by Sacramento County. Please use this link to download a template. Continued reinforcement and practice of recommended safety protocols will keep our industry building safely.
Governor Newsom’s March 19, 2020 Stay at Home order (California Executive Order N-33-20) specifies construction is an essential industry in the State of California. For companies seeking language for documentation for their employees commuting back-and-forth to jobsites, a template is provided here.
Construction Exemption from Stay at Home Order
On March 19, 2020, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued an order for all individuals living in the State of California to stay home or at their place of residence. Businesses and organizations that provide critical infrastructure for the state are exempted, including health care and public health, public safety, food and agriculture and media.
This past weekend, the California Office of Emergency Services provided additional guidance on exempt sectors.
Guidance on construction activity was included in this document (page 11 in the link). Specifically:
“Construction Workers who support the construction, operation, inspection, and maintenance of construction sites and construction projects (including housing construction)”
“Workers such as plumbers, electricians, exterminators, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of construction sites and construction projects (including those that support such projects to ensure the availability of needed facilities, transportation, energy and communications; and support to ensure the effective removal, storage, and disposal of solid waste and hazardous waste) (SRBX emphasis added)
Please note updates to this list of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce may be issued periodically. SRBX will provide our industry with necessary guidance, as warranted.
While SRBX understands the importance of keeping jobsites moving forward during these difficult and unprecedented times, we are working with industry partners to encourage Cal OSHA and Federal OSHA to provide reasonable and uniform guidelines for our member companies who encounter days missed by employees due to illness related to COVID-19 (View letter here). We will continue to work with state and federal agencies to assist them as they develop more specific guidance regarding reporting.
The California Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response website contains up-to-date information regarding Governor Newsom’s March 19th Stay at Home Executive Order. The website recently posted this clarification on the order:
How does this order interact with local orders to shelter in place? Does it supersede them?
This is a statewide order. Depending on the conditions in their area, local officials may enforce stricter public health orders. But they may not loosen the state’s order.
SRBX will continue to work with our local coalition of construction, development and business associations to present the case for consistency in local orders across the Greater Sacramento region. With a regional construction workforce engaged in important works for the health of the Region’s citizenry and economy, it is essential that local Counties, Municipalities and Agencies operate off the same page.
If your project is experiencing difficulty in securing permits, inspections or any other governmental approvals, please notify Tim Murphy or Damon Conklin at SRBX immediately.