By Shawn Stinson
FRANKLIN – Pendleton County continues to be listed as a green county on the state’s coronavirus color map.
The March 21 update on the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources coronavirus color map showed Pendleton as one of 53 counties in the state as green. The two counties to be listed as yellow were Braxton and Webster.
Pendleton’s positivity rate was 0.85 on the March 21 update to allow the county to be labeled as green. The county’s infection rate, the other indicator used by state health officials to determine a county’s color on the map, was 14.35 in the yellow status. The March 19 and 20 updates listed the county’s positivity rate as 0.83 and 0.84, respectively. The infection rate remained steady at 14.35 for both days.
Pendleton County Health Department officials announced there were four new cases reported in county residents since March 14. There has been a total of 1,996 cases in the county since the start of the pandemic.
There were three additional breakthrough cases of the coronavirus in county residents since the March 14 update. There have been 249 breakthrough cases and one breakthrough death in the county since the start of the pandemic. A breakthrough case is defined as an individual testing positive for the coronavirus despite being deemed fully vaccinated by health officials.
The WVDHHR coronavirus website continued to list 27 cases of the Delta variant and one instance of Omicron variant in a county resident since the start of the pandemic on the March 21 update.
Gov. Jim Justice announced the creation of the West Virginia Homeowners Rescue Program during his March 21 coronavirus press briefing. The program will aid homeowners in the state who have experienced a financial hardship related to the coronavirus.
“If you’re a homeowner, especially if you’ve been hurting financially, you’ve got to see if you can take advantage of this program because we can come running to the rescue,” Justice said. “Any federal dollars that are available to the state, we want to try to capitalize on that in any way we can.
“Not only will we be able to help you, but this will also be a major stimulus for our economy, because the multiplier effect of these dollars will be enormous.”
The program can provide aid for past-due mortgage payments of up to $15,000, past-due utilities bills of up to $2,500, past-due insurance, property tax payments and other housing costs of up to $5,000, $300 in internet assistance and $500 of assistance on certain down payment loans. Applications will be accepted on March 28. Online and paper application forms will be available.
Justice also announced an online vaccination due date calculator is active on the vaccinate.wv.gov website. The application permits an individual to determine a vaccination due date for anyone at any stage of vaccination.
“This incredibly important tool will help some people to ensure that they’re getting their booster shots,” Justice said.