-Press Release, Warren County Government
At the April 6, 2020, Warren County Board of Commissioners meeting, officials unanimously voted to amend the March 15 State of Emergency declaration to include a curfew for Warren County residents, as well as the towns of Norlina and Macon, beginning Thursday, April 9 at 9 p.m.
The 9 p.m. – 6 a.m. curfew will run for the duration of Governor Cooper’s Stay At Home Executive Order 121.
“Now is not the time for us as a Warren County community to be relaxed,” stated Chairman Tare “T” Davis, leading into the board’s consideration of a curfew. “We need to come together to keep each other safe. This means we must observe the Governor’s stay at home order, and we must practice social distancing.”
On April 6, the Warren County Health Department received confirmation of the county’s third known confirmed positive case of COVID-19 in Warren County. As of April 6, the county has forty-one known residents who have been tested for COVID-19; of those forty-one tests, there have been thirty-eight known negative results.
Dr. Margaret Brake, Director of the Warren County Health Department, stated that the role of the health department in positive cases is to be involved in contact tracing for those individuals that have tested positive; health department staff is also involved in isolation and quarantine orders for those positive individuals. The health department has a responsibility for checking in with those positive persons and determining when their case has recovered and when insolation orders can be lifted.
County Manager Vincent Jones clarified that the curfew would not prevent residents from conducting essential business and making essential trips as provided for in the governor’s executive order. He also stated that surrounding counties -including Franklin and Halifax – also have the 9 p.m. – 6 a.m. curfew.
County Attorney Hassan Kingsberry stated that the guidance from the Governor’s Office for essential employees traveling after 9 p.m. and prior to 6 a.m. is to have your work identification, such as an ID badge, handy while commuting. Law enforcement will work with you as long as your reason for traveling past the curfew is related to essential business as outlined in the governor’s order.
“Now is not the time to become relaxed because the weather is changing… We have seen instances of people holding gatherings of larger than ten people – cookouts – while not observing social distancing,” stated Chairman Davis. “We understand we have major holidays coming up… this is not the time or the year for that, unfortunately. Teens are playing basketball and hanging out in groups. We have to take this seriously. Community spread is here. As a rural community with less access to medical resources, it is important that we recognize the seriousness of this pandemic. We have to do this together.”
Sheriff Johnny Williams joined the meeting via telephone and stated that the Sheriff’s Office will be working with the public to help enforce the curfew. If residents see a large gathering, they should call the 911 non-emergency line at 252-257-3456 and a deputy will respond.
The Town of Warrenton passed its own State of Emergency declaration; they will consider amending their own order should they chose to enact a curfew.
For more information, contact the Warren County Manager’s Office at 252-257-3115 or visit www.warrencountync.com. You may also call the Warren County COVID-19 Information Line at 252-257-7132.