Above: Gov. Cooper discusses the latest executive order.
WILMINGTON — Governor Roy Cooper will announce a new executive order later today, shutting down dining rooms and bars statewide, while allowing delivery and to-go orders to continue. The order will also address unemployment insurance.
Cooper and members of the Coronavirus Task Force will hold a media briefing this afternoon to provide additional details.
According to a release from Cooper office, “[a]t that briefing, Governor Cooper will announce a new executive order in response to COVID-19 that closes restaurants and bars for dine-in customers but allows them to continue takeout and delivery orders. The executive order will also include an expansion of unemployment insurance to help North Carolina workers affected by COVID-19.”
More info on applying for unemployment applications here.
Cooper addressed the “reality that people will lose jobs” and announced five changes to the state’s current unemployment system made by his latest executive order:
- Removes 1-week waiting period before applying for unemployment benefits
- Removes requirement that person apply for jobs to be eligible
- Allows applicants who lose jobs and, in some cases, have hours cut to apply for benefits
- Permits online or phone applications
- Directs the state not to hold employers financially responsible for benefits paid out due to Covid-19
The order takes effect at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 17. Cooper’s office did not indicate for how long the order would be in effect.
North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen also spoke, noting that while President Trump has suggested limiting groups, including in private spaces and residences, to less than 10, the CDC guidance was still to limit groups to under 50, and that local law enforcement was still only enforcing limits on groups of 100 or over. Cohen noted there has been 40 positive tests (in 16 counties) out of 1,100 conducted so far; Cohen said there were thousands more samples ‘in the pipeline’ awaiting testing.