CHARLESTON — Governor Jim Justice continued his daily press briefings via YouTube this week, providing ongoing updates on the state’s response efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
Justice opened Friday’s briefing announcing the losses in West Virginia from COVID-19, as well as the death of Senator Bill Hamilton’s son, David.
Justice read a statement Thursday, announcing “West Virginia Strong Summer Food Assistance,” a cooperative effort by the West Virginia National Guard, the Department of Education, Bureau of Senior Services, Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) and United Way. Their partnership provided a map of every location in the Mountain State that can provide food to anyone in the state throughout the summer. He told residents that if there is not a location near them, report it to United Way by calling 211.
West Virginia National Guard Major General James Hoyer elaborated further on the Summer Feeding Assistance program. He informed viewers that the map is interactive and available on all the parties’ websites. Jenny Gannaway, Executive Director of West Virginia VOAD, commented on the collaboration and explained further on who all is involved to make this happen. State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch thanked all those involved to help feed the children in the over 300 providing sites across the state.
Justice updated that Minor League Baseball will continue next year. More information will come soon.
The governor announced Thursday and signed an Executive Order Friday permitting that fairs and festivals may resume with strict guidelines on July 1. He also expanded the public gathering limit from 25 to 100 individuals, effective Friday at midnight.
Justice reminded residents in Harrison, Ohio, McDowell, Grant, Hampshire and Hardy counties of the free COVID-19 mobile testing site dates and times. Friday, he informed residents in Greenbrier, Hancock, Logan and Wood counties of testing sites available on June 12 and 13.
Justice updated Friday on the testing of all correctional facilities in the state.
All cities and counties were once again reminded to apply for the CARES Act grant funding and Justice asked all West Virginians to get counted in the 2020 United States Census.
Justice gave an update on the state’s current statistics, as of Friday. The governor showed the WV Cumulative Percent of Tests Positive was 1.96 percent. The Daily Percentage of Positive Cases showed 0.80 percent. The state’s Fatality Rate currently stands at 3.88 percent. The state’s 1,425 recovered cases far exceed the number of active cases at 606. West Virginia has tested almost 6.1 percent of the state’s population, higher than the nation’s average of almost 5.6 percent. All of these statistics and more can be found on the dashboard at coronavirus.wv.gov.
Hoyer also updated on the cadet training at the Mountaineer Challenge Academy and showed a recruitment video. He also reminded that Saturday is the 76th anniversary of the invasion at Normandy, France, otherwise known as “D-Day.”
Dr. Clay Marsh, COVID-19 Czar, updated that the state’s R naught was 0.86 percent, as of Thursday. Marsh also reported Friday that the state’s Rt value, those who have been infected but recovered, is down to 0.6865 percent.