Town's Response to COVID-19: For the latest information about the Town's response to COVID-19, resources pages, and other relevant information here.    

Town News

Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

Message from the Mayor May 18

Post Date:05/18/2020 6:15 PM

Dear Friends and Neighbors,


May is Mental Health Month

It has been 9 weeks since the Shelter in Place started. I’ve seen a lot of resourceful, creative approaches to getting through this: getting outdoors, volunteering, and finding other ways to connect with friends and family. There are a lot of effective strategies, but for some, these are not enough. There are times that we all need extra help. It is important to know you are not alone, and that help is available if you need it. May is Mental Health Month. It is a time to remember that we all struggle at times, and that there are resources available. Be kind to yourself, both during these stressful times and all year around. If you need more help, Mental Health America has resources and tool kits, and San Mateo County also has services avaliable; learn more on the County’s website.


Questions about new health order

As I mentioned in my message on Friday, some more businesses are now allowed to open as long as they follow the guidance of the Health Officer. If your business is among the following, please read the County guidance and set in place the necessary measures before you open.

·      Retail Stores and Retail Supply Chain Businesses (Curbside pickup and delivery only)

·      Limited Services Which Do Not Require Close Customer Contact (such as pet grooming, dog walking, car washes, appliance repair, residential and janitorial cleaning, and plumbing).

·      Outdoor Museums

·      Offices (but only for those office employees cannot perform their job duties from home)

·      State-Identified Essential Business 

·      All businesses must comply with the guidance before opening.


As you bring people back into your home, take care to keep your families and the people coming into your homes safe. The County is allowing residential cleaning services, provided you maintain at least six feet of distance and wear a face covering at all times (if you will be in the house while they are cleaning). I recommend you wear a mask--it is a simple thing to do and it reduces the risk of transmission. If you are allowing anyone to come into your home for needed work, a few small measures will greatly increase everyone’s safety.

We are at the beginning of phase 2 of the State re-opening process. The County is working to move forward, one step at a time. Each new opening requires time to assess the results and make sure we don’t precipitate a spike in new cases. As we begin to open up more businesses, remember that we still need to wear masks and practice social distancing. If we want to keep businesses open and not trigger the need for new restrictions, we must all do our part to reduce the risk of tranmission when we are out in public.

If you have specific questions about the new order, please let me know and I will make sure we find an answer for you.

Proper Face coverings do not have a valve

According to the San Mateo County Health Order : “Note that any mask that incorporates a one-way valve (typically a raised plastic cylinder about the size of a quarter on the front or side of the mask) that is designed to facilitate easy exhaling is not a Face Covering under this Order and is not to be used to comply with this Order’s requirements. Valves of that type permit droplet release from the mask, putting others nearby at risk.”

Farmers market

The Drive-through Market is still going strong. You can still get your market and vegetable bags, along with flowers, crepes, and more. This Thursday, the SAFE Portola Valley Market will operate from 2 pm to 6 pm at the site of the Portola Valley Farmers' Market at Town Center. Products will only be available for purchase online. Please pre-order at: before 7 pm on Wednesday.


While some aspects of our lives will be disrupted for the foreseeable future, I am hopeful as I see more activities and businesses being allowed to operate again. As I’ve said before, we’re all being asked to make major concessions in the name of public health, and I appreciate all of the efforts you’re all making to comply. Please take care of yourselves and those around you, and stay healthy.


Best Regards,


Jeff Aalfs, Mayor

Town of Portola Valley