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Posted on: May 22, 2020

PRESS RELEASE (5-22-20): INFORMATION ABOUT THE TOWN OF BENSON AND PHASE TWO OF THE STATE REOPENING

INFORMATION ABOUT THE TOWN OF BENSON AND PHASE TWO OF THE STATE REOPENING PLAN

5-22-20 

This week, the Governor’s Office announced plans to move forward with Phase Two of North Carolina’s reopening plan. Phase Two will go into effect today, May 22, 2020 at 5pm

The basics of Phase Two statewide are as follows: 

  • The Stay at Home order will be lifted. North Carolina will move to a “Safer at Home” recommendation, especially for vulnerable populations. 
  • Bars, nightclubs, museums, playgrounds, gyms and fitness studios, and indoor entertainment venues (movies, bowling, bingo, etc) will remain closed under Phase Two. 
  • Gathering limits are still observed at no more than 10 people indoors and no more than 25 outdoors with social distancing. These guidelines apply to events and places like meetings and event venues, amphitheaters, sporting venues and arenas, groups at the beach, groups at parks, etc. 
  • Restaurants, salons, personal care businesses, and pools can open, but with a 50 percent capacity — as well as adhering to social distancing and additional sanitation requirements. 

Here’s what Phase Two looks like for Benson: 

  • Benson Town Hall and all Town facilities will open for the public, but with restricted access. Residents with town-related questions can still call (919) 894-3553 as phones will be manned during normal business hours.
  • Utility customers will be able to enter Town Hall to pay bills, however hallways, offices, and meeting spaces will be off limits inside the building during Phase Two. One to two customers can be helped at a time inside the Utilities office at the window. 
  • When the courthouse location at Benson Town Hall reopens, those attending court will have access to public bathrooms during established hours, but will have the same limited access as residents while on site. 
  • The Benson Police Department and the Benson Planning Department will be open, but will follow the same restrictions as the Utilities Office — seeing only one to two residents at a time. As always, for all life-threatening emergencies — dial 911. For non-emergencies, the BPD can be reached at (919) 894-2091.
  • Hand sanitizer will be available at Town Hall for customers and employees to use while on site. Additional and extensive sanitation measures are already in place at Town Hall. 
  • Residents needing to pay utility bills can still use Town Hall’s night dropbox at any point in the day, pay bills online (https://ipn.paymentus.com/cp/tbup), or call and pay over the phone (previous restrictions on phone call payments have been temporarily lifted). All electric and water cutoffs continue to be suspended at this time.
  • The Benson Parks and Recreation building and the Benson Museum of Local History will remain closed to the public. Benson’s outdoor parks and walking trails remain open to the public while being subject to the gathering limits and social distancing measures. PLEASE NOTE: even though local parks and walking trails will be open, all playgrounds in these locations will remain closed during Phase Two. 
  • The Mary Duncan Public Library will reopen during normal hours, but will be CURBSIDE SERVICE ONLY at this time. Please contact the library at (919) 894-3724 for any questions regarding books, checkouts, or returns. 

For more information about health recommendations and who is designated at high risk for becoming seriously ill, please visit the CDC’s website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus and NCDHHS’ website at www.ncdhhs.gov/coronavirus.

More about the Governor’s Phase Two plans:

https://governor.nc.gov/

Sources for Johnston County COVID-19 information:

Johnston County Government
https://www.johnstonnc.com/

Johnston County Public Schools
https://www.johnston.k12.nc.us/

Visit Johnston County, NC
https://www.johnstoncountync.org/joco-strong/

Resources for small business:

Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC):

https://edpnc.com/nc-business-relief-resources-covid-19/

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