Thursday, July 16, 2020

Dear Friend:

Here’s today’s COVID-19 update:

  • Hospitalizations due to COVID remain high statewide, according to data released by North Carolina earlier today. 1,134 people are presently hospitalized due to the virus, down slightly from the 1,142 reported yesterday. The state also added 2,160 new confirmed COVID-19 cases, the second highest total to date.

  • Bladen County Schools has posted its fall school re-opening plan. Families will have a choice for students K-4th Grade, either a 100% virtual school model or a hybrid of in-person and virtual learning. Students in 5th through 12th grades will participate in 100% virtual learning. More info from Bladen County Schools here.

  • With Hurricane Season 2020 underway, the CDC has launched a new website, Natural Disasters, Severe Weather, and COVID-19. The page includes information on preparedness and recovery during the COVID-19 response and what the general public can do to keep themselves safe. 

  • Operation Warp Speed, the historic initiative launched by the Trump Administration to develop, manufacture and distribute a COVID-19 vaccine in record time, continues to make progress. For more about Operation Warp Speed, which is being coordinated by both the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Defense, click here.

  • The Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it is allocating an additional $400 million of its coronavirus relief funding approved by Congress to enhance the Department’s assistance to veterans who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness during the pandemic. More information from the VA here.

Also, here are two other non-COVID related news items, but major announcements of importance:

  • President Trump spoke about a series of actions the Administration is taking to protect the nation from violent MS-13 gang criminals. Dismantling, defeating and destroying MS-13 has been a top priority of the Administration. The Justice Department announced the indictment of a key MS-13 leader on terrorism-related charges yesterday. MS-13 has committed terrible acts of violence in the United States, and these steps will help defeat this criminal gang and protect Americans. MS-13 has been a focus of the Department of Justice for some time.  

  • The Trump Administration also announced a long-overdue modernization of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), 50 year old legislation that for years has stood in the way of common-sense, necessary construction and infrastructure improvement projects across the country. Under the President’s leadership, the Administration has updated its regulations governing the implementation of NEPA for the first time in decades, and yesterday it announced its final rule that modernizes and streamlines the development of infrastructure projects. This means less red tape and bureaucracy that will enable us to build needed infrastructure improvements faster and cheaper. I was pleased to be among a small group of lawmakers invited to the White House early during the Trump Administration to talk about the need for NEPA reform. These changes will help get infrastructure projects completed much quicker saving taxpayers billions of dollars in addition to the other obvious benefits. 

For today’s good news story, I’m highlighting James L. Lamb of Clinton, Sampson County who was named North Carolina Farmer of the Year by the N.C. Farm Bureau. As Farmer of the Year, he’ll be visited by judges from across the southeastern United States as a nominee to become the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Ag Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year. James has a great story to tell, and he’s a perfect ambassador for what makes North Carolina farm families great.  Click here to learn more about him.  Congratulations, James!

As always, stay tuned to  and the  NC Department of Health and Human Services’ website   for the latest on the outbreak. And please feel free to send good news stories our way to highlight in this newsletter by replying to this e-mail. 


David Rouzer

For the latest COVID-19 Updates and Archived information from the Pleasure Island Chamber of Commerce, please CLICK HERE
(If on a cell devise, Click Events and then click on COVID-19 updates)

1121 N. Lake Park Blvd.
Carolina Beach, NC 28428