The County Update publishes once a week on Fridays and also as needed to share important news and resources.

Quick Read: Click on a headline below to go straight to the story.

In Today’s Update:

• Featured Video: Storm Response 2023

• Storm Response Press Conference

• Animal Care Keeps it pawsitive, even while it is pawsitively chilly out

• County to host Needles Community Resource Fair Wednesday

• Text message scam targets CalWORKs and CalFresh customers

• SR 210 weekend closure canceled due to recent storms

• Pet of the Week: Otis

• Jobs of the Week

Featured Video: Storm Response 2023

Crews are working around the clock to respond to ongoing historic snowstorms affecting our county’s mountain communities

Storm Response Press Conference

San Bernardino County and its partner agencies hosted a press conference Friday morning to discuss ongoing response efforts in assisting residents after a nearly week-long series of snowstorms dumped more than nine feet of snow on communities stretching from Mt. Baldy to the eastern edge of the Big Bear Valley.  The entire press conference can be viewed on the County’s YouTube channel.

County Fire, the Sheriff’s Department, California Highway Patrol, County Public Works, Caltrans, Southern California Edison, and Southern California Gas have entered into a unified command structure to better-coordinate the response to the emergency.

The San Bernardino County Office of Emergency Services is operating 24/7 to coordinate food, fuel, supplies and services up to mountain residents.

On Wednesday, the Board of Supervisors conducted an emergency meeting to create a $10 million emergency funding stream to support efforts by County departments to clear snow from mountain roads. County CEO Leonard X. Hernandez also pledged to secure any additional resources needed to support the County’s efforts.

“We will rent and lease any vehicles we can acquire, and we are going after all of the reimbursements we can,” Hernandez told the Board.

The County’s call center has shifted to a 24-hour operation. Those in need can call 909-387-3911 for information and assistance. For urgent medical issues, residents should dial 911. Emergency phone services are operational in all mountain areas. County Fire is utilizing special snow vehicles to access snowed-in patients in medical need.

Mountain residents who may have snow-damaged homes are able to take refuge at the newly opened shelter at the Rim of the World High School, located at 27400 State Highway 18, in Lake Arrowhead. Mountain residents who have not been able to get back up the mountain can stay at the Redlands East Valley High School shelter, located at 31000 E. Colton Ave. in Redlands. Medical consultations are available at Rim of the World and at Redlands East Valley via phone.

Seniors can call the Department of Aging and Adult Services hotline for assistance at 877-565-2020.

To speak to someone about behavioral health services, please call the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health 24/7 phone line at 888-743-1478.

For road condition information:

Animal Care Keeps it pawsitive, even while it is pawsitively chilly out

San Bernardino County Animal Care is mutts about our furry friends! The Big Bear and Devore Animal Shelters are continuing to show commitment, care, and compassion to the animals even while it is pawsitively chilly out.

With the health, safety, and wellbeing of the animals being a top priority, San Bernardino County Animal Care has taken several measures to ensure our furry friends remain safe and comfortable throughout the storm.

Working around the clock, staff are routinely checking on the animals to provide continuous distribution of blankets to the animals, maintaining commercial-grade heaters and geothermic floor heating throughout the kennels, and having registered veterinary technicians (RVTs) working in conjunction with Animal Care’s contracted veterinarian to conduct wellness checks on the animals.

For more information about animals in need of loving homes in San Bernardino County’s Big Bear and #Devore shelters, please visit San Bernardino County Animal Care to see photographs of the animals awaiting adoption or call (800) 472-5609. To donate to assist animals at the shelter, visit Animals are First Fund Facebook page.

SBCTA hosted a webinar on Thursday, February 16 to provide an overview of the series of six directional 55-hour freeway closures on SR 210 in Highland and Redlands.

County to host Needles Community Resource Fair Wednesday

Residents of the Tri-State area can access various resources from county, state, and local organizations at a County Resource Fair on Wednesday, March 8 at the El Garces Historic Train Depot located at 950 Front Street in Needles.

The event is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Participating county departments include Assessor/Recorder/County Clerk, Behavioral Health, Public Defender, Transitional Assistance Department, Veterans Affairs and Workforce Development.

Additional agencies include the Chamber of Commerce, Colorado River Medical Center, Tri-State Community Healthcare and the Needles Tourism and Visitors Center.

This is the first time in nearly 20 years that San Bernardino County has deployed this number of agencies to one location in the Needles area. For registration information visit San Bernardino County Resource Fair – Needles

Text message scam targets CalWORKs and CalFresh customers

THe California Department of Social Services wants customers receiving CalWORKs and CalFresh benefits via an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card to be on the first line of defense against recent scams for electronic theft.

Fake text messages that look like official text notifications are being sent to customers asking them to contact a fake customer service center where they collect your information to steal your benefits. If you are currently receiving benefits for public assistance programs such as CalFresh, and CalWORKs, use caution when providing someone with your personally identifiable information (PII).

You can protect your personal information in the following ways:

  1. Never give your EBT card number and/or personal identification number (PIN) out,
  2. Do not give out any personal identifiable information, such as your:
    1. Social Security Number
    1. Date of birth
    1. Banking information
    1. Username
    1. Password by text

Personally identifiable information about your case will never be requested by text message. 

If you would like more information about your benefits, call the California EBT Customer Service helpline at (877) 328-9677 or contact your local Transitional Assistance Department.

If you think you may be a victim of a scam, please contact the San Bernardino County Transitional Assistance Department at (877) 410-8829.

SR 210 weekend closure canceled due to recent storms

This weekend’s 55-hour directional closure of WB SR 210 in Highland and Redlands has been canceled due to conditions in the field from the recent storms.  The next closure is scheduled for Friday, March 10 at 10 p.m. to Monday, March 13 at 5 a.m.

A series of 55-hour freeway closures are scheduled on select weekends through April that will allow crews to safely perform paving operations on eastbound (EB) and westbound (WB) SR 210 at the on- and off-ramp junctures of the San Bernardino Avenue interchange.  The work is part of the SR 210 Lane Addition and Base Line Interchange Project in Highland and Redlands.

55-hour directional closures will take place during weekends from Friday at 10 p.m. to Monday at 5 a.m., and are scheduled for the following dates*:

• Friday, March 10 through Monday, March 13 (WB)

• Friday, March 24 through Monday, March 27 (EB)

• Friday, March 31 through Monday, April 3 (EB)

• Friday, April 14 through Monday, April 17 (EB)

* Please remember construction is dynamic and the schedule is subject to change.

SBCTA hosted a webinar on Thursday, February 16 to provide an overview about the series of directional 55-hour freeway closures on SR 210 in Highland and Redlands.

To learn more about the closures and detours:

• Visit SR 210 Lane Addition/Base Line Interchange

• Sign up for weekly construction alerts

• Bookmark SBCTA’s interactive Google Map for real time closure and detour information


The SR 210 Lane Addition and Base Line Interchange Project is designed to provide increased traffic flow throughout this corridor. To eliminate the existing bottleneck and provide lane continuity, the SR 210 will be widened from Sterling Avenue to San Bernardino Avenue in the cities of San Bernardino, Highland, and Redlands, as well as an unincorporated portion of San Bernardino County. Base Line Interchange will also be widened from Buckeye Street to Seine Avenue in the City of Highland, which will include widening three of the four interchange ramps. As the SR 210 Lane Addition and Base Line Interchange projects aligned geographically and shared similar delivery schedules, they were combined for the design, right-of-way, and construction phases to save cost and expedite the schedule. In addition, pavement rehabilitation work was added through a cooperative agreement with Caltrans that includes new concrete pavement between 5th Street and Lugonia Avenue. Adding the pavement rehabilitation work during the Lane Addition and Base Line Interchange projects means one less project that the community will have to navigate around in the future.

Pet of the Week: Otis

Our Pet of the week is the fun-loving unaltered male, Otis (#A772771). Otis is estimated to be 2 years and 4 months old and is ready to be adopted at the Devore Animal Shelter. He’s been at the shelter since November 2022 and is excited to meet his new family.

Let staff know you would like to meet ID #A772771. For information about animals available for adoption in San Bernardino County’s Big Bear and #Devore shelters, please visit San Bernardino County Animal Care to see photographs of the pets awaiting adoption or call (800) 472-5609. To donate to assist animals at the shelter, visit Animals are First Fund Facebook page.

Jobs of the Week

San Bernardino County has jobs that will open on Saturday, March 4.

We encourage you to apply and share these job openings with those who may be interested in them. Recruitments listed are subject to final department approval.

Check Job Opportunities for the most up-to-date recruitments.

A teal box with the words COVID-!9 Vaccine Information on it and a injectable needle on the left.

For all COVID-19 related information, including case statistics, FAQs, guidelines, and resources, visit the County’s COVID-19 webpage. Residents of San Bernardino County may also call the COVID-19 helpline at (909) 387-3911 for general information and resources about the virus. The phone line is NOT for medical calls and is available Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you have questions about social services, please call 211.