McMaster declares new state of emergency; AccelerateSC meets to discuss reopening


COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV) – Governor Henry McMaster issued Executive Order 2020-29 Monday, which declares a state of emergency throughout the state and allows for the state’s response to COVID-19 to continue.

“South Carolina continues to fight this deadly virus with every asset and resource available,” McMaster said. “While we are making progress, we must remain vigilant with expanding prevention and testing efforts. Our state is also facing an economic disruption and emergency the likes of which we’ve never seen, and we are working tirelessly to get our businesses back up and running and our people back to work as soon and as safely as possible.”

The governor can declare a state of emergency for up to 15 days. McMaster’s most recent executive order declaring a state of emergency was issued on April 12 and expires Monday. All existing executive orders will remain in effect with the new state of emergency, unless or until they are cancelled.

McMaster has said he hopes to have South Carolina open again by June and has already allowed some nonessential businesses to reopen.

Also on Monday, McMaster and Lr. Governor Pamela S. Evette participated in the first meeting of the “governance” component of AccelerateSC. The initiative aims to help South Carolina recover from the COVID-19 outbreak and is made of five component: response, protection, governance, resources and information.

At the meeting, representatives from from across the state met and discussed the issues South Carolina faces as it begins reopening.

Some of the many issues brought up Monday afternoon included struggles businesses face reopening, schools losing touch with students as classes transition to online and private schools losing enrollment as parents can no longer afford tuition.

The group also discussed first responders who are fearing job security after the pandemic and the need of PPE at detention centers in the state.

To hear all issues discussed, watch the full meeting above.

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