Cooper partially re-opens some businesses

By on September 30, 2020

Movie theaters, outdoor bars to operate at 30% capacity.

Gov. Roy Cooper

Noting that, “We’re cautiously encouraged about where we in the pandemic,” North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper announced on Sept. 30 that the state is moving into Phase 3 of re-opening by partially easing restrictions on some previously closed facilities and businesses.

Under the new Executive Order, which will go into effect on Friday, Oct. 2 at 5 p.m. and will expire on Oct. 23:

  • Large outdoor venues with seating for at least 10,000 can re-open at 7% capacity.
  • Outdoor arenas and amphitheaters can re-open at 30% capacity or allow 100 people, whichever is smaller.
  • Movie theaters and conference centers can re-open at 30% or allow 100 people, whichever is smaller.
  • Bars can re-open for outdoor service at 30% of capacity or allow 100 people, whichever is smaller. For those bars that don’t have an outdoor capacity, seven customers will be allowed per 1,000 square feet. (The 11 p.m. curfew for serving alcohol in restaurants, and now bars, will continue.)
  • Outdoor amusement park attractions can re-open at 30% capacity.

At the same time, the limits on mass gatherings will remain at 25 people indoors and 50 people outdoors, as Cooper described the state’s move to ease some restrictions as “methodical and cautious.”

Underlying the Sept. 30 announcement was a sense of caution expressed by Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen, as both noted that COVID-19 cases are currently surging in some parts of the U.S. And referencing the relatively short three-week lifespan of the new Executive Order, Cooper said that, “we want to keep this window short enough so we can react” to significant changes in the numbers in North Carolina.

In reviewing the key metrics tracking the spread and impact of the virus in North Carolina, Cohen described numbers that had “levelled,” but for the most part, hadn’t begun a sustained downward march. “We are stable,” she noted.  “But as the governor said, we are fragile.”

On Sept. 30, the state reported 1,495 new COVID-19 cases with 3,532 deaths and 956 people currently hospitalized with the virus.

Update: Dare County reported 4 new cases of COVID-19 on Sept. 30, brining the total number of cases reported here since the outset of the pandemic to 551. All four individuals are residents of Dare County and are isolating at home.

Statewide NC coronavirus numbers – Sept. 30

See today’s COVID-19 Update for NC interactive charts)

  • Reported NC cases – 210,632 (up 1,495 from yesterday)
  • Reported NC deaths – 3,532
  • Currently hospitalized – 956
  • Suspected COVID-19 cases hospitalized in past 24 hours – 389 (up 104 since yesterday)
  • Confirmed COVID-19 case hospitalized in past 24 hours – 140 (up 22 since yesterday)
  • Adults in ICU with COVID-19 – 297 (up 10 since yesterday)
  • Patients presumed to be recovered – 184,422   
  • Reported cases in Dare, Currituck and Hyde Counties – 858 (Dare 547, Currituck 184, Hyde 127)
  • Completed tests – 3,029,942

Note: Every morning, the NC Department of Health and Human Services posts updates o number of reported cases of coronavirus. That number reflects positive results from all tests, including the NC State Laboratory of Public Health and all hospital and commercial labs. There may be other reports, from the media and elsewhere, that will include different numbers during a given day, but this is an effective way of tracking numbers from the same source on a day-to-day basis.


Link to COVID-19 North Carolina Dashboard

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