RALEIGH, N.C. (WECT) - A statewide curfew on the sale of alcohol at North Carolina restaurants will begin Friday, Gov. Roy Cooper announced Tuesday.
Restaurants will not be allowed to sell alcohol after 11 p.m., Cooper said during a media briefing. Bars will remain closed.
“To drive down numbers and continue our trends moving in the right direction, we’re announcing today a statewide curfew on the sale of alcohol at restaurants,” Cooper said. “Public health experts and examples from other states show that bars and other places where people gather closely together are a high-transmission setting. We want to prevent restaurants from turning into bars after hours. We’re hopeful that this new rule can help drive down cases.
“Several local governments have already taken this step. Their orders will remain in place, as long as they are as strict or more strict, and our statewide order will go into effect anywhere that does not already have such a curfew already.”
An executive order that had suspended utility shutoffs and late fees until Wednesday, July 29, will not be extended, Cooper said Tuesday.
“We have been encouraging customers and utilities, as well as landlords and renters to try to work out payment plans and discouraging to shut off of utilities or evictions,” Cooper said.
Cape Fear Public Utility Authority announced Tuesday that it “will maintain its suspension of delinquency-related service shutoffs and late fees through at least the end of August.”
Also during Tuesday’s news conference, NCDHHS Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen said that some of North Carolina’s COVID-19-related numbers appear to be stabilizing:
- The number of people coming to emergency rooms with COVID-like illnesses is starting to level.
- North Carolina’s trajectory of lab-confirmed cases is leveling, but is still high.
- The state’s trajectory in percent of tests returning positive is declining but remains above 5 percent.
“Seeing glimmers of potential progress does not mean we can let up -- it means it’s time to double down,” Cohen said. “The positive signs in our trends should only strengthen our resolve to keep at it with those 3 Ws – wear a face covering, wait six feet apart, and wash your hands often.”