By Nathan Ham
North Carolina businesses and residents will find out on Wednesday what the next step will be in the state’s reopening phases.
According to a release from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Governor Roy Cooper and the Coronavirus Task Force will be giving media briefing today at 3 p.m.
There has been no guarantee that the state will proceed into phase 3, which can happen as early as this Friday at 5 p.m. COVID-19 testing in the state has seen a recent spike in cases and hospitalizations. Currently, 915 people across the state are in the hospital with the virus, which has increased from 587 one month ago.
North Carolina had its highest total of positive cases on June 12 with 1,768. After the positive case total dropped from June 14-17, the number spiked back up again with 1,333 positive tests on June 18, 1,652 cases on June 19 and 1,549 on June 20.
The last two days with complete data, June 22 and June 23, the positive tests had taken another significant drop down to 804 on Monday and 822 on Tuesday.
Much like everything else in the world it seems, reopening North Carolina has turned into a political argument. In a press release from the North Carolina Republican Party, Governor Cooper “seems to be deliberately hiding all the COVID facts.”
“The fact that we are all sitting on the edge of our seats waiting to see if Governor Cooper will catch up with the rest of the nation is the problem,” said NCGOP Press Secretary Tim Wigginton. “Cooper should stop his secret reopening process, and instead work with all North Carolinians, including all elected officials, transparently. Businesses and families need consistency and transparency in order to get back to work. The status quo is untenable.”
In a recent COVID-19 update from the North Carolina Democratic Party, officials continue to be dismayed with President Donald Trump’s decision to scale back the coronavirus task force.
“While North Carolina is still battling the coronavirus with all the tools at our disposal, President Trump is closing up shop and throwing in the towel,” said NCDP Communications Director Austin Cook. “From day one, this president has not taken the threat of COVID-19 seriously, and people across our state have paid the price for his inaction and incompetence. Ramping down the federal government’s response to this pandemic is nothing short of admitting defeat and leaving millions of North Carolinians at risk.”
What Phase 3 Will Bring Back to NC
- Increased capacity for restaurant dining rooms.
- Bars can reopen.
- Bowling alleys, fitness centers, movie theaters, amusement parks, entertainment venues can reopen.
- Increase the number of people allowed at group gatherings.