COVID-19 UPDATE: Gov. Justice provides update on fairs and festivals; increases public gathering limit

6/4/2020

CHARLESTON, WV – Gov. Jim Justice joined West Virginia health leaders and other officials today for his latest daily press briefing regarding the State’s COVID-19 response.

View the latest COVID-19 data at Coronavirus.wv.gov. 
FAIRS AND FESTIVALS TO RESUME ON JULY 1
On Thursday, Gov. Justice announced that fairs and festivals are permitted to resume on July 1, provided that all guidelines are followed to help keep West Virginians as safe as possible.

“We understand the important role that fairs and festivals play in West Virginia communities but we have to have some level of strict guidelines in place,” Gov. Justice said. “Those guidelines may be reduced at a later time, but for now we have to do everything in our power to hold these events as safely as we possibly can.”

Guidance will be provided on The Comeback page of the Governor's website as soon as possible. 
PUBLIC GATHERINGS TO INCREASE FROM 25 TO 100 INDIVIDUALS
Also on Thursday, Gov. Justice announced that public gatherings will be permitted to increase from 25 to 100 individuals effective at 12 a.m. on June 5, 2020. 

"Our medical experts have advised that we can go forward with this action," Gov. Justice said. "We will continue watching those numbers closely but we want people to go about their lives as normally and safely as they possibly can."

Safe social distancing in public settings is still strongly encouraged.

Gov. Justice issued an Executive Order today formally allowing for the increase in public gathering size. 
CASINOS AND MOVIE THEATERS PERMITTED TO REOPEN
The executive order Gov. Justice issued today also formally allows casinos and movie theaters to reopen on June 5. 

"We ask that you abide by the guidelines in place when it comes to reopening," Gov. Justice said. "We want to continue to allow businesses to reopen and in order to do that we have to make sure that safety is a top priority for everyone."

Both casinos and movie theaters must ensure that proper social distancing and hygiene practices are maintained.

Guidance is available on The Comeback page.
WEST VIRGINIA STRONG – THE COMEBACK  |  SAFER AT HOME ORDER
Week 6 of the Gov. Justice reopening plan – West Virginia Strong – The Comeback – is now underway and announcements regarding future reopenings have been made. The Governor's Safer At Home order also remains in effect. Click on the links to read more: 
WEST VIRGINIA STRONG SUMMER FOOD ASSISTANCE MAP

Gov. Jim Justice announced that, through a multi-agency effort between the West Virginia National Guard (WVNG), the West Virginia Department of Education, the West Virginia Bureau of Senior Services, the West Virginia Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (WV VOAD) and the United Way, an interactive free-feeding location map is now available to all West Virginians. 

"There are nearly 600 sites across the state of West Virginia ready to assist you with any help you may need in terms of food," Gov. Justice said. "West Virginia is knocking it out of the park with this and we are doing great work to make sure all of our people are taken care of."

You can view the map here

If feeding locations aren't available in some communities, individuals are encouraged to call 211 for further assistance. 
FREE COMMUNITY TESTING REMINDER: HARRISON, MCDOWELL, AND OHIO COUNTIES
Gov. Justice offered a reminder on Thursday that free community COVID-19 testing will be provided this Friday, June 5, and Saturday, June 6, in Harrison, McDowell, and Ohio counties.

The effort is part of a plan to provide free optional testing to all residents in several counties that are experiencing higher rates of COVID-19 transmission. It targets residents who have struggled to be seen by a physician or do not have insurance to pay for testing. However, other residents, including those who are asymptomatic are welcome to be tested.

Testing is scheduled as follows:

Harrison County
Friday, June 5 & Saturday, June 6

Monticello Playground, 518 Monticello Avenue, Clarksburg, WV 26201

Ohio County
Friday, June 5 & Saturday, June 6
Laughlin Chapel, 129 ½ 18th Street, Wheeling, WV 26003

McDowell County
Friday, June 5
Tug River Health Clinic, 5883 Black Diamond Highway, Gary, WV 24836
Saturday, June 6
City Hall, 32509 Coal Heritage Road, Keystone, WV 24852

Click here to read more
MORE COMMUNITY TESTING: GRANT, HAMPSHIRE, AND HARDY COUNTIES
The Governor also reminded West Virginians that the next round of community testing will be provided next Saturday, June 13, in Grant, Hardy, and Hampshire counties.

The testing will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be offered at the following locations:

Grant County
EA Hawse Health Center, 64 Hospital Drive #5, Petersburg, WV  26847

Hampshire County
EA Hawse Health Center, 22338 North Western Turnpike, Romney, WV 26757

Hardy County (three locations)
EA Hawse Health Center, 17978 WV 55, Baker, WV 26801
EA Hawse Health Center, 8 Lee Street #127, Moorefield, WV 26836
EA Hawse Health Center, 106 Harold K. Michael Drive, Mathias, WV 26812

Click here to read more
CITY AND COUNTY GRANT APPLICATION REMINDER
The Governor once again offered a reminder that the State recently sent out the application for cities and counties throughout West Virginia to apply for funding through the federal CARES Act.

A new web portal is now available for city and county government officials to apply for this grant funding, at grants.wv.gov. Interested parties can also call the helpline: 1-833-94-GRANT. 
WEST VIRGINIANS URGED TO PARTICIPATE IN CENSUS
Once more today, Gov. Justice asked all West Virginians to participate in the 2020 United States Census.

Every West Virginian who does not respond to the Census represents a loss of $20,000 in federal funds over the next 10 years for the state and its local communities. The funds can go toward things like healthcare, education, infrastructure, school lunch programs, and more.

Be counted in minutes: 2020census.gov. 
MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL UPDATE

On Thursday, Gov. Justice announced that he received positive news from the Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred about the future of minor league baseball in West Virginia. 

"I am very confident to say that minor league baseball will continue in West Virginia next season," Gov. Jim Justice said. "There's still a lot of work to be done, but I remain hopeful that all four of our minor league teams will remain active in the Mountain State."

Gov. Justice began talks with the MLB Commissioner in 2019. 
DATA UPDATE

Gov. Justice provided another overview of statewide data on COVID-19, highlighting that West Virginia’s daily percentage of positive test results were at 0.94 percent, while the state’s cumulative percentage of positive test results dropped to 1.97 percent.

“Our numbers continue to stay low and that is exactly what we want to see,” Gov. Justice said. “We are keeping a close eye on any potential areas of concern and we are doing everything we can to keep people safe.”

West Virginia continues to excel in several metrics compared to its surrounding states and the national average. View the latest COVID-19 data at Coronavirus.wv.gov. 
WEST VIRGINIA NATIONAL GUARD UPDATE
During today’s press briefing, Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, Adjutant General of the West Virginia National Guard, reiterated the importance of the West Virginia Strong Summer Food Assistance Map and the role the WVNG is playing to ensure that the needs of West Virginia's most vulnerable populations are met. 

"You can use the map to look for feeding locations and support locations for senior citizens and youth," said Maj. Gen. Hoyer. "We are happy to work together cooperatively to get through this pandemic together and I think the Governor said it best that these partnerships and efforts will likely last well beyond this pandemic. 

Click here to read more
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
Click here to view all Executive Orders and other actions taken by Gov. Justice to combat the spread of COVID-19 in West Virginia.

For more information about COVID-19 prevention and more, call the State’s toll-free hotline at 1-800-887-4304 or visit Coronavirus.wv.gov.​
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Contact Information

Jordan Damron, Jordan.L.Damron@wv.gov

Contact

Office of the Governor
State Capitol, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E
Charleston, WV 25305

Office Phone:
304.558.2000 or 1.888.438.2731

Governor's Mansion:
304.558.3588

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