North Carolina ranks 33rd out of 51 states and the District of Columbia for COVID-19 restrictions, according to a report from WalletHub released this week. While all states have at least partially reopened non-essential businesses that were closed for months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. is still far from a full reopening. Source: WalletHub Many states have put a temporary pause on moving to the next stage of reopening, or have even reversed course and closed certain businesses again due to surges in the disease. In order to determine the states with the fewest coronavirus restrictions, WalletHub compared the 50 states and theRead More →

By North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper This pandemic has affected every corner of our state, including our state budget needs. For many families, it has also shifted their priorities. Last week, I proposed a budget that tackles the challenges we’re facing today while building for the promise of tomorrow. We can emerge from this crisis even stronger than before if we invest wisely. My budget, Support for a Determined North Carolina, uses the state’s remaining $900 million CARES Act funding to continue responding to COVID-19 and providing relief to communities. I’ve proposed for $175 million to go toward critical public health services, including contact tracing andRead More →

In an effort to continue slowing the spread of COVID-19, Gov. Roy Cooper signed Executive Order 162 to extend the limited hours on the sale of alcoholic drinks in North Carolina. As the state continues to fight the spread of COVID-19, the Order requires restaurants to end the sale of alcoholic beverages at 11 p.m. This Order will remain in effect through Oct. 2, 2020. “North Carolina has made good progress stabilizing our COVID-19 numbers, and this order will help us continue it,” said Governor Cooper. “Now is the time to continue staying cautious and vigilant as we work to beat this pandemic.” Local governmentsRead More →

State asks for court to reinstate North Carolina’s decision to reject consistency certification N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper announced that North Carolina will continue to fight against seismic testing along the state’s coast. The State of North Carolina has filed an appeal of the decision by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to override the state’s objection to WesternGeco’s plan for offshore seismic testing. “North Carolina has been clear, we do not want seismic testing in our coastal waters, or the damage from offshore drilling that could follow,” said Governor Cooper. “The studies of our waters show little prospect for drilling, and the environmental damage to ourRead More →

N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper announced $175 million to help North Carolinians with rental and utility payment support in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. “COVID-19 has strained family finances across North Carolina, and many people are struggling to make ends meet,” said Governor Cooper. “People need a safe, stable place to call home, especially during this pandemic, and we must help keep people in their homes and keep their utilities on while our economy recovers.” The announcement includes three programs designed to work together to help people avoid eviction and pay their bills, per the Governor’s direction. Eviction Prevention and Utility Payments: Approximately $94 millionRead More →

President Trump has a 43 percent job approval rating in North Carolina, while Governor Cooper has a 50 percent job approval rating, according to a poll released by High Point University on Thursday, July 23. Both Trump and Cooper got higher marks than North Carolina’s two senators, Republicans Richard Burr and Thom Tillis, who is running for reelection. The poll also asked questions about job security during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results of that poll are here. Here are results of questions related to voting and politics: Voting These days, many people are so busy they can’t find time to register to vote, or move aroundRead More →

A High Point University Poll released on Thursday, July 23, asked registered voters in North Carolina about working from home and their personal finances during the COVID-19 pandemic. Half (50%) of the registered voters in the poll said they are employed and have a job. Of those that are employed, 36% said that working from home could be an option if required to do so, while 58% said that is not an option. Retirees made up one-quarter (25%) of the total group of people polled. Ten percent said that they were unemployed and looking for work, 5% were temporarily laid off, 4% were not inRead More →

Governor Roy Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen today announced that North Carolina will remain in Safer at Home Phase 2 for three more weeks. Cooper also announced that face coverings must be worn when people are in public places as officials seek to stabilize concerning trends of increasing viral spread. Cooper and Cohen were joined by Dennis Taylor, President of the North Carolina Nurses Association and Eugene A. Woods, President and CEO of Atrium Health. “North Carolina is relying on the data and the science to lift restrictions responsibly, and right now our increasing numbers showRead More →

Governor Roy Cooper took action to the address the spread of COVID-19 by issuing stronger social distancing requirements and speeding up the process to get benefits to people out of work through Executive Order No. 131. Three key areas are addressed in Executive Order 131. The first requires retail stores that are still operating to implement new social distancing policies to make shopping safer for customers and employees. The second makes earlier COVID-19 guidelines mandatory for nursing facilities and recommends other long-term care facilities to do the same. The third area is unemployment benefits, issuing changes that will speed up certain benefit payments to those who are outRead More →

Frequently Asked Questions for Executive Order No. 131 April 9, 2020 This Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQ”) document provides guidance for the implementation of Executive Order No. 131 (“Order”). On Thursday, April 9, 2020, Governor Roy Cooper issued an Executive Order that provides new required and recommended policies for retail establishments, addresses COVID-19 mitigation measures for long-term care facilities, and expedites the processing of unemployment insurance claims by expanding availability of the attached claims process. This information is subject to change in light of new CDC guidance and additional Executive Orders or local government declarations. Required and Recommended Policies for Retail Establishments Which retail businesses areRead More →