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Newsletter from U.S. Rep. David Rouzer

Dear Friend,

I hope you and your loved ones had a safe, happy Fourth of July this past weekend. Here’s today’s COVID-19 update:

As we begin a new week, here’s a snapshot of the COVID-19 outbreak in the counties that make up the 7th District:

* Bladen County: 399 cases, 3 deaths
* Brunswick County: 662 cases, 6 deaths
* Columbus County: 565 cases, 39 deaths
* Duplin County: 1,579 cases, 28 deaths
* Johnston County: 1,737 cases, 33 deaths
* New Hanover County: 1,138 cases, 7 deaths
* Pender County: 303 cases, 2 deaths
* Sampson County: 1,112 cases, 6 deaths
* Wayne County: 1,913 cases, 28 deaths

Statewide, we have 74,529 cases and 1,398 deaths due to the COVID-19 outbreak. 982 individuals are currently hospitalized due to the virus, and North Carolina has completed more than 1.051 million tests so far. The latest statistics on the COVID-19 outbreak in North Carolina can always be found here.

North Carolina also estimates that about 55,318 COVID-19 patients statewide have recovered from the virus.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services gave an update on the statewide trends as of late last week: North Carolina’s trajectory of lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases and surveillance data continues to increase. The trajectory in percent of tests returning positive remains steady at about 9 percent and the trajectory of hospitalizations is also leveling.

An update from the IRS: the agency has begun sending out notices to CARES Act stimulus payment recipients who received their payments via a debit card that has not yet been activated. Taxpayers who were mailed a debit card for their Economic Impact Payment but haven’t activated it yet will receive the letter reminding them that they can activate it to access their money or obtain a free replacement card if needed.

* For the reminder mailing, the Treasury Department logo will be visible on the envelope and letter. The left front of the envelope will clearly include this notation: “Not a bill or an advertisement. Important information about your Economic Impact Payment.” The inside of the letter will include instructions for people who haven’t activated their card yet and includes a picture of what the debit card looks like.

* People expecting EIP payments should look for this mailing and activate their debit cards as soon as possible. Once the card is activated, people can transfer the funds to a bank account, get cash surcharge-free at an In-Network ATM or use it in other ways.

For more information, visit EIPcard.com. Additional information, including answers to frequently asked questions and other resources is available at IRS.gov/coronavirus.

The FDA is warning consumers against the use of hand sanitizers that contain methanol, or wood alcohol, frequently used to create fuel or antifreeze but not suitable for use as a hand sanitizer. The substance can be toxic when absorbed through the skin and life-threatening if ingested. See this webpage for a full list of FDA-tested and recalled hand sanitizers.

For today’s good news story, I’m highlighting Stephanie Athanas of Wilmington, who graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy this spring and has been selected to receive a commission as a second lieutenant in the new United States Space Force. Lt. Athanas graduated from Topsail High School in 2016 and earned a nomination from me to attend the Air Force Academy. It’s great to see one of our own from southeastern North Carolina chosen to become one of the first officers in this historic new military command. Congratulations, Lieutenant!

As always, stay tuned to Coronavirus.gov 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 email at NC07DR.Newsletter@mail.house.gov.

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