The American Red Cross has a severe blood shortage due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations. Healthy individuals are needed to donate to help patients.

In the Nebraska-Iowa Region, 11 blood drives have been canceled, resulting in 386 fewer blood donations. At each blood drive and donation center, Red Cross employees follow safety protocols to help prevent the spread of any type of infection.

Blood can be donated at the donation center in North Platte. To contact them, click HERE.

 

So far, all suspected cases of the virus in the North Platte area, including an employee at Applebee’s restaurant, that were sampled by Saturday turned out to be negative, local health officials said. Seven samples collected later were still being tested.

 

County courthouse offices will remain open, operating business as usual, but residents are asked to limit visits to the courthouse. The courthouse is actively disinfected through the day and evening. Anyone with a fever or symptoms of respiratory illness is asked not to enter the building.

Utilizing online services, mail-in services and the county’s drop box located in the parking lot of the Lincoln County sheriff’s office (302 N. Jeffers), near the Children’s Museum. Enter the lot on 3rd St. and turn right. Put everything in a secure envelope and address it to the desired County office.

(For more information about doing business at the courthouse, see the separate article on the Bulletin’s front page.)

 

The Nebraska Department of Labor has released information about a new short term layoffs support program for employers. The program allows employers to uniformly reduce affected employees’ hours by 10- 60% while permitting the employees to receive a prorated unemployment benefit.

Also, here is information about disaster assistance for small businesses. Small Business Administration Disaster Assistance in Response to COVID-19.

 

Remote meetings

Gov. Pete Ricketts issued an executive order to permit state and local governmental boards, commissions, and other public bodies to meet by videoconference, teleconference, or other electronic means through May 31.

The order stipulated that all such virtual meetings must be available to members of the public, including the news media, to give citizens the opportunity to participate as well as to be duly informed of the meetings’ proceedings.  Notices of government meetings and the agendas of the meetings must still be publicized in advance.

 

UNK dorm refunds

The University of Nebraska at Kearney is offering refunds to students who decide to move out of residence halls early.

UNK students who move out for the semester and fill out checkout papers will receive a 60% prorated refund of room and board costs based on their housing facility and dining plan, effective March 17, the college said.

UNK will not refund tuition and student fees because remote instruction is continuing through the rest of the semester.