During the month of July, Orange County will begin a phased approach to opening county facilities to the public. The Orange County Transformation Plan is informed by the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, and the Orange County Health Department.
While allowing residents to return to certain county facilities, such as the library, departments will continue to offer remote and online services developed over the last year in response to the pandemic.
“The goal is to open county facilities and services in a way that better serves residents, promotes efficiency and safety for our customers and staff, and offers employees an opportunity to work differently,” said county manager Bonnie Hammersley. “We’re calling this a Transformation Plan instead of a reopening, because we are changing how we conduct business with the public.”
Effective July 1, 2021, the following transformation strategies will be implemented:
Face coverings will not be required for fully vaccinated guests or employees to enter county facilities, with some exceptions (see below). Unvaccinated individuals are required to wear face coverings in all county facilities. This policy will apply in general unless State or Federal requirements supersede it or legitimate business and safety reasons dictate a more cautious approach.
Face coverings are recommended in settings where large groups are gathered and social distancing is not possible.
Employees who provide transportation services, medical and dental care, in-home visitation, and anyone serving children or at risk individuals must continue to wear face coverings.
Indoor Social Distancing
Social distancing (maintaining a six-foot distance between individuals) is required in waiting areas and other indoor settings where the public may congregate. Care should be taken in small spaces such as elevators and restrooms where social distancing is not practical.
All outdoor venues are allowed to open at full capacity, although proper social distancing is encouraged. Both indoor and outdoor facility rentals may resume at full capacity. Proper social distancing is recommended in these settings as well.
Below are plans for specific departments. Please note any exceptions to the above guidance before visiting a county facility.
Department on Aging
On July 1, the Department will open to the public at a reduced capacity and with cleaning protocols in place. Given the heightened risk of contracting severe COVID-19 in the aging population, face coverings and social distancing are required for both employees and the public in the Passmore Center and the Seymour Center. The lunch program will be offered as a curbside and delivery service only.
Department of Agriculture, Parks and Recreation
Summer camps for children have resumed at limited capacity and with mask and distancing requirements for both participants and staff. The Sportsplex will also begin increasing capacity as conditions warrant.
Child Support Services
On July 1, Child Support Services will open to walk-in traffic. Social distancing will be enforced in the waiting areas should lines form.
On July 6, the Main Library in Hillsborough will open with social distancing requirements. Hours will be adjusted to provide time for cleaning. Curbside services will continue, and programming will remain virtual.
Orange Public Transportation
Orange County Public Transportation will be open to the public effective July 1. We are still practicing social distancing in our waiting area and will require face-covering to be on upon entering the building.
The Salvage Sheds will reopen July 1. Salvage Sheds are available at all Waste & Recycling Centers except for Bradshaw Quarry. The Sheds are open during the Waste & Recycling Center’s operating hours. Please remember to maintain social distancing and, if not possible, wear a mask when using the sheds.
The Shred Center at 1207 Eubanks Road will re-open Wednesday, July 7. Orange County residents can drop-off up to two boxes (business size) of confidential documents to be shredded on-site that day. Drop-off will take place outside, but visitors must wear masks if they are unable to socially distance themselves. Residents will not be allowed to watch their documents being shredded.
The Shred Center is by appointment only on Wednesdays. To schedule an appointment please call 919-968-2788 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
On July 12, Tax Administration will open to the public with cleaning protocols and social distancing enforced in waiting areas. This may reduce capacity in the main waiting area, so the public may be asked to extend lines out of the main waiting area.
On July 1, the Visitors Bureau will open to the public with cleaning protocols and social distancing enforced.
All other County departments will remain open in their current operating status. Please visit the department’s webpage on the county website for details about their specific operating plan.