North Carolina State and Local Action on COVID-19

March 20, 2020

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For a complete look at federal and state action related to the coronavirus, visit MWC’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Facts and Resources website.

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North Carolina General Assembly — Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

March 19

Gov. Cooper: NC sees first case of community spread; schools likely to remain closed past March 30
During a Thursday press conference, NC Governor Roy Cooper said the state has seen its first case of ‘community spread’ of COVID-19. He says because of this, the situation is becoming increasingly pressing and could leave kids out of school for an even longer period of time. 

As coronavirus leads to shelter-in-place elsewhere, Wake, Durham leaders weigh options
Some cities around the country have already ordered residents to shelter-in-place, and it could be coming to North Carolina, too. It’s an option that’s “on the table” for Wake County. Other Triangle leaders are considering it, too.

Cabarrus County officials declare State of Emergency during coronavirus outbreak
Elected officials with Cabarrus County, the cities of Concord and Kannapolis, and the towns of Midland and Mt. Pleasant announced State of Emergency declarations due to COVID-19.

Buncombe orders certain businesses to close, bans gatherings of 10 or more
Buncombe County is ordering the closure of businesses where people congregate in close proximity for an extended time in an effort to increase social distancing and slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

U.S. Small Business Administration granted request for a disaster declaration for small businesses suffering economic losses due to COVID-19
The U.S. Small Business Administration granted Governor Roy Cooper’s request for a disaster declaration for small businesses that are suffering economic losses due to the new Coronavirus, COVID-19.

March 18

NCDHHS seeks authority from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to temporarily waive certain Medicaid and NC Health Choice policies as part of North Carolina’s response to the COVID-19
The waivers will provide flexibility to NC Medicaid and providers to address the urgent health care needs of beneficiaries during this public health emergency.

Congress passes coronavirus bill expanding paid leave. Are you eligible?
Congress passed a new law expanding paid sick leave and family leave for employees of companies with fewer than 500 employees who have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

NC 2-1-1 to Provide Assistance for COVID-19
Governor Roy Cooper today announced NC 2-1-1 by United Way of North Carolina as a resource for people to call for assistance related to the COVID-19 coronavirus.

March 17

Governor Cooper Issues Executive Order closing restaurants and bars for dine-in service makes unemployment benefits more widely available
Today, Governor Roy Cooper announced that North Carolina restaurants and bars will be closed to sit-down service and limited to take-out or delivery orders starting at 5 pm tonight, March 17, 2020. Grocery stores, gas stations, and convenience stores, are exempt from this order and will remain open, though they may not serve sit-down food.

NCDHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen signs an order of abatement declaring the use of seating areas of restaurants and bars as an imminent hazard for the spread of COVID-19

CMS votes to move spring break back to April 13
The U.S. has more than 4,660 cases and businesses, education, sports and more are being impacted as leaders continue to move to stricter measures to contain the coronavirus.

March 16

NCDHHS recommends no mass gatherings for more than 50 people
To slow the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and reduce the number of people infected, Gatherings that draw more than 100 people are prohibited under Executive Order 117Open PDF issued by Governor Roy Cooper on March 14.

NCDHHS issues interim guidance for child care settings

NC Courts stop evictions and foreclosures as part of coronavirus response
North Carolina will stop eviction and foreclosure hearings for the next 30 days as part of the court system’s latest effort to reduce courthouse traffic and slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Wake County Board of Commissioners appropriated $2 million of fund balance for the costs associated with Wake County’s COVID-19 response

Charlotte City Council considered resolution authorizing the City Manager to enact an emergency paid leave program and to make necessary adjustments to the City’s employee leave policies to address the current COVID-19 pandemic
The City Council also considered a resolution authorizing the City manager to negotiate and approve an agreement with the Foundation for the Carolinas in the amount of $1,000,000 for the provision of housing assistance to persons whose incomes are impacted by the current COVID-19 health crisis.

March 14

Gov. Executive Order: NC Schools To Close For 2 Weeks, Large Gatherings Prohibited

March 12

NC legislature cancels meetings, lets staffers work remotely amid coronavirus fears
Due to concerns over coronavirus, North Carolina’s legislature is canceling committee meetings that bring small groups of lawmakers to Raleigh ahead of the next scheduled General Assembly session in late April.

As NC coronavirus cases rise to 17, Gov. Cooper urges canceling large gatherings
With 17 cases of coronavirus illness and more expected, North Carolina took stronger measures Thursday to slow the spread of illness. Gov. Roy Cooper advised people to cancel, postpone or modify any event likely to draw 100 people or more, starting Friday.

The ACC basketball tournament has been canceled due to concerns of coronavirus outbreak
Hours after commissioner John Swofford announced that the ACC men’s basketball tournament would still be played Thursday, league officials canceled the final three days of the tournament amid rapidly increasing concerns about the spread of COVID-19, the coronavirus disease.

NCAA cancels remaining winter and spring championships

March 11

All UNC System schools join Duke in halting on-campus classes because of coronavirus
All UNC System institutions are moving their students online and out of the classroom as coronavirus continues to spread.

NC Medicaid Updates Policies to Address COVID-19
NC Medicaid is implementing several policy changes in response to COVID-19 to slow the spread of the virus, support healthcare providers and protect more vulnerable North Carolinians. The policies, which will go into effect March 13, address pharmacy benefits, supplies and access to care and are designed to facilitate access for patients experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and to limit close contact for routine care, particularly for those at higher risk of severe illness.

March 10

NC governor declares state of emergency as state deals with coronavirus