2 California counties tackle coronavirus differently but have similar outcomes

22 March 2022

Iconic landmarks in Sonoma and Solano counties are the Empire Building, left, in Santa Rosa’s Courthouse Square and the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield. (Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat; Portecuaphoto / Shutterstock)

Sonoma and Solano, the North Bay’s two largest counties, are comparable in population.

But they have taken notably different paths toward dealing with the now 2-year-old coronavirus pandemic.

Sonoma has more residents than Solano — 494,000 to 440,000, respectively — but Solano is denser than Sonoma — 503 people per square mile in Solano, compared with 307 per square mile in Sonoma, according to California and U.S. Census Bureau data.

In trying to slow the virus behind COVID-19’s ailments, Sonoma has been among the California counties with the most proactive public health measures since March 2020. At times, the county even went beyond similarly acting counties and cities at times.

“If at times Sonoma County had more restrictive health orders, it was warranted because of conditions in Sonoma County, including case rate, death rate, hospitalizations, etc.,” county spokesperson Matt Brown wrote in an email.

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