COVID-19 Novel CoronavirusTown of Franklin, NC Information For Citizens & Visitors
Town of Franklin, NC COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus Public Notices, Information & Resources
June 16 Update - Macon County Public Health
Due to the stabilization of the COVID-19 situation in Macon County and North Carolina, MCPH’s Daily COVID-19 Updates will be transitioning to a weekly update starting 6/18/2021. Macon County Public Health will publish weekly updates beginning on Friday 6/25/2021.
May 14 Update - Following New CDC Guidance on Face Coverings, Governor Cooper Lifts Many COVID-19 Restrictions
State lifts gathering limits, social distancing requirements in all settings and indoor mask mandate for most settings
Following yesterday’s guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that fully vaccinated individuals can safely do most activities without wearing a mask or the need to social distance from others, Gov. Cooper and Secretary Cohen announced that North Carolina will remove its indoor mask mandate for most settings. Additionally, the state will lift all mass gathering limits and social distancing requirements. These changes are now in effect as of 1:30 p.m. today.
Masks will still be required in child care, schools and camps as most children are either not yet vaccinated or are not yet eligible to be vaccinated. Everyone, including people who are fully vaccinated, will still be required to wear a mask in certain settings such as public transportation, health care settings like hospitals, doctor’s offices and long-term care settings like nursing homes, and certain congregate settings like correctional facilities and homeless shelters. NCDHHS will continue to have strong public health recommendations for individuals to continue to protect one another until more people are vaccinated. People who are not vaccinated should wear a mask and maintain distance in all indoor public settings and in outdoor settings when they can't maintain six feet of distance.
MACON COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH VACCINATION UPDATES
MCPH Call Center Update - June 14, 2021
Macon County to Close Vaccine Call Center, Calls to Go to Health Department
On June 18th, Macon County will be closing the COVID Call Center. The Macon County COVID Call Center opened January 16th to handle the high volume of calls in response to the launch of public vaccination efforts for COVID-19.
With the closing of the call center, members of the public who wish to receive the COVID-19 vaccine or need tested for COVID-19 are encouraged to call the Macon County Health Department directly at 828-349-2081, where they can then schedule an appointment for either testing or vaccination.
Kathy McGaha, Macon County Health Director, said of the closing, “We are so thankful for the xommunity members who stepped up to help our community and make the vaccine call center possible. This is not the end of our push to have Macon County residents vaccinated against this deadly virus, but we are beginning to incorporate our COVID-19 response with the important work we do every day.”
With generous support from Drake Enterprises, Macon County was able to launch a dedicated call center that could handle the demand for lifesaving vaccines. The call center was also able to hire temporary positions to staff the call center with funds made available by the Macon County Board of Commissioners, in addition to realignment of existing Macon County employees, and Macon County citizens who volunteered their time to help their community.
Integral to the opening of the vaccine call center was County Manager, Derek Roland. Mr. Roland was able to mobilize various county agencies, to assure the success of the call center. “The success we had at the call center would not have been possible without Mr. Phil Drake and his willingness to donate his facility, staff and equipment. In addition, the hard work and dedication of Sheriff Robert Holland, Tammy Keezer and all those employees and volunteers at the call center, whether it be disseminating information or registering individuals for vaccines, directly resulted in Macon County having one of the highest per capita vaccination rates in the state. As a Macon County citizen, I will never be able to thank these individuals enough for the excellent job they have done. As Macon County Manager, it is an honor to work alongside these individuals each and every day.”
The last day the Vaccine Call Center will be active will be Friday, June 18th, 2021 at 4:00pm. Those who wish to schedule an appointment after that time are asked to call Macon County Public Health at 828-349-2081. The Health Department is open Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 5:00pm
MCPH Vaccine Update - May 5, 2021
Macon County Public Health Will Being Pre-Registering Children Age 12 to 15 for the COVID-19 Vaccination
With the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccine advisory panel set to authorize the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use in those aged 12 to 15, Macon County’s Vaccine Call Center will begin to pre-register children, should their parents wish for them to be vaccinated once the vaccine has been approved. No Pfizer clinics are currently planned, though the public and those who pre-register will be notified once appointments become available for the Pfizer vaccine with Macon County Public Health.
The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is approved under a FDA Emergency Use Authorization, and has been shown to be safe and effective at preventing severe illness from COVID-19, and vaccine clinical trials for the age 12 to 15 group had no symptomatic infections after being fully vaccinated. Side effects in this age group were similar to that of the age 16 to 25 group which included fever, pain at the injection site, and cold like symptoms lasting no longer than 72 hours after the injection.
Vaccinating children is key to increasing immunity within our community, and allowing students to return to a normal school life. Once fully-vaccinated, students will be able to stay in in-person classroom settings regardless of exposure, and those with no symptoms will be allowed to attend classes.
Parents that want their child to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, must call Macon County’s Vaccine Call Center at 828-524-1500 to pre-register. Any adult who wishes to receive the vaccine, may also call the Vaccine Call Center to register and schedule an appointment. The Macon County Vaccine Call Center is open Monday – Friday, from 8:00am to 5:00pm.
Macon County Public Health Vaccination Registration Updates
Macon County Public Health has begun to vaccinate all individuals who are 18 years of age or older, regardless of health status or employment. Macon County Public Health has worked through a majority of the existing waitlist, including those who previously qualified for their vaccine. Appointments are available to all who qualify and want the vaccine. Individuals that want to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, must call Macon County’s Vaccine Call Center at 828-524-1500 to register and schedule an appointment. The Macon County Vaccine Call Center is open Monday – Friday, from 8:00am to 5:00pm.
Macon Transit Offers Free Transportation for Vaccinations
Need a ride to your COVID-19 vaccine appointment? Macon County Transit (MCT) is offering FREE rides to get your vaccine. Call today to schedule your ride 349-2222.
Do you have questions about COVID-19 or suspect you may have symptoms? Please call Macon County’s Community Resource Center at 828-349-0211 for information on the following:
- Questions about possible COVID-19 symptoms (fever, coughing, and difficulty breathing)
- Questions about state or local regulations
- Questions about unmet needs
Hours are Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. If you are unable to call during these hours, please leave a message and it will be returned during normal operating hours.
Symptoms for COVID-19 are fever, cough, other lower respiratory illness (shortness of breath). If you believe that you may have COVID-19, please call the Health Department at 828-349-2517. The call center is open Monday through Friday from 8:00am – 5:00pm, until further notice.
Macon County Public Health recommends that business owners consult the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance on what employers and employees should do if they have been exposed to COVID-19. Macon County leadership is committed to remaining transparent with the public and encourages businesses to be open with the public as well. For more guidance about employee exposure, visit the CDC by clicking here.
MACON COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH UPDATES
June 08 - Macon Countys Report Additional COVID-19 Death
Macon County Public Health received notification that a Macon County resident diagnosed with COVID-19 has passed away. To protect the family´s privacy, no further information will be released about this individual. This death brings Macon County to forty-one (41) deaths related to COVID-19.
“This family is in our thoughts and prayers as they mourn the loss of their loved one,” said Health Director, Kathy McGaha. McGaha continued, “Macon County residents can help protect themselves and our community by receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. Macon County’s has appointments available for the lifesaving vaccine for all who are age 18 and over, as well as those those between 12 and 17 for future clinics. The more individuals who get this vaccine, the more likely that we will stop seeing COVID-19 deaths.”
Utility Accounts Public Notice
Notice is hereby given that the Town of Franklin will suspend reconnection fees, late penalties and interest on Town of Franklin utility accounts for at least the next sixty (60) days. This is effective as of March 10, 2020, and is now extended pursuant to North Carolina Executive Order 124 and any extensions thereof.
We know that many of our customers are struggling during these difficult and uncertain times and we are committed to providing clean, safe drinking water so that you and your family can remain healthy. To make sure you are not surprised by a large past due balance later, we will continue to notify you when your account is past due. Our staff is available to work with you to set up a payment arrangement or assist with scheduling automatic payments.
Hard copies of North Carolina Executive Order 124 are available for pick up at Town Hall located at 95 East Main Street, Franklin, NC 28734. You may also download NCEO 124 here. For questions or assistance please call 828-524-2516.
CUSTOMER INQUIRIES & MAKING PAYMENTS
Attention all customer’s due to the growing concern for COVID-19 novel coronavirus, if you have a general question or inquiry please knock on the window at the Franklin Town Hall reception area during business hours and someone will be able to assist you.
If come to Franklin Town Hall to make a utility or tax payment please utilize the drop box payment located out front. If you need a receipt, please put that request in envelope and we can mail, fax, or email that to you. If you have a question regarding a utility or tax payment please call 828-524-2516.
For assistance or questions regarding these notices, please call the Town of Franklin at 828-524-2516.
INFORMATION FROM THE FRANKLIN POLICE DEPARTMENT
During the COVID-19 pandemic the world is currently facing, the Franklin Police Department will continually evaluate and update its day-to-day operations as needed. Changes in operation and response protocols will be implemented to protect sworn and non-sworn personnel and the public as we continue to serve the community. » READ THE LATEST UPDATES
Balsam West Establishes Free WI-FI Hotspot in Franklin
Balsam West has established a drive-in Wi-Fi hotspot that is free and open to the public at the Franklin Plaza parking lot in Franklin. The SSID is Balsamwest and the login is balsamwest . » More information at Balsam West
March 26 , 2020 - UPDATE - Emergency Proclamation 2020-2
» READ PROCLAMATION HERE (pdf)
Overview (please read complete text of download above for complete information):
During the State of Emergency previously declared within the corporate jurisdiction of the Town of Franklin, all lodging facilities including hotels, motels, resorts, inns, guest houses, bed and breakfasts, campgrounds, RV parks, vacation cabins, home rentals, and any and all short term rentals or leases within the said jurisdiction are ordered to be closed to the public at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 27th, 2020. For purposes of this proclamation, the term 'short-term' shall mean for a term of less than twenty-eight (28) days in duration.
Existing non-short-term rentals or leases that are continuously occupied are excluded from the operation of this declaration. The following persons and activities are further
a. Employees and independent contractors of the Town, County of Macon, any provider of medical care, or government or public utility.
b. Military, National Guard, or law enforcement personnel deployed and/or assigned to assist local agencies during the Local State of Emergency.
c. Town residents who occupy a lodging facility due to circumstances that have rendered the person's usual place of residence uninhabitable.
d. Anyone ordered quarantined within a lodging facility by an appropriate public health official.
e. Homeless persons occupying a lodging facility prior to the effective date and time of this proclamation; use of lodging facilities needed to house the homeless of the Town of Franklin in an emergency related to the COVID-19 response.
f. Use of a lodging facility if used as an emergency facility to assist with the COVlD-l9 response
EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY OR UNTIL MODIFIED OR RESCINDED
Mass gatherings of persons in groups of more than 10 people are prohibited.. A mass gathering is defined as any event or convening that brings together more than 10 people in a single room or single space at the same time, such as an auditorium, stadium, area, large conference room, meeting hall, theater, or any other confined indoor or outdoor space. This includes parades, fairs, and festivals.
Childcare facilities are permitted to remain open pursuant to guidance from the NC Division of Child Development and Early Education.
Executive Orders issued and amended by the Governor of North Carolina including orders prohibiting or restricting the operation of business establishments, the congregation of people as well as the movement of people in public places, including but not limited to Executive orders number 116, 117, 118,119 and 120, will be enforced by local law enforcement officers or other agencies as appropriate.
All persons are urged to maintain social distancing (approximately six (6) feet away from other people) whenever possible and to continue to wash hands, and practice proper respiratory etiquette (including coughing into elbow).
lt is recommended lhat all persons whose point of departure originates from outside the area of , "community spread," currently including the states of New York, New Jersey, Washington, and Florida, and which shall also include other states which are subsequently designated areas of "community spread," and entering into the Town of Franklin for the Sole purpose of relocating temporarily into an area of less substantial spread, shall be subject to Quarantine and/or lsolation Orders by the Macon County Health Director in accordance with applicable state law and are hereby specificaily requested to quarantine or isolate themselves, as appropriate, for a period of fourteen (14) days to limit exposure to our residents and prevent a hardship for local infrastructure, including the healthcare industry.
March 17, 2020 - Town of Franklin Declares State of Emergency
» READ DECLARATION HERE (pdf)