Coronavirus Information Center
Severe weather outlook South Dakota

Governor Burgum holds daily press conference March 24


Governor Doug Burgum announces 4 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, March 24. One in Burleigh County, one in Dunn County and two in Cass County. There are now 7 hospitalized in the state. Total positives include 36 statewide in North Dakota.

The Governor says the State will light up the Capitol on Wednesday night with a heart. The State lights up the Capitol around Christmas and New Year’s. The heart is a part of the world-wide Facebook effort called #WorldofHearts.

The Bank of North Dakota (BND) shared its student loan relief plans to assist borrowers impacted by COVID-19 with the Industrial Commission today. Effective immediately, borrowers may request to defer payments for six months.

The interest rate for variable rate borrowers decreases April 1, 2020, so BND will reduce payments to reflect the new interest rate. In addition, all borrowers with a fixed interest rate will receive a decrease in their interest rates by at least 1 percent when the Bank is able to work through technical issues.

To request the deferment of payments, borrowers can complete a simple form online at or call 800.472.2166 extension 328.5660.

Governor Burgum says the President’s discussion of possibly opening restrictions by Easter will be also based in each state. He says all Governors will be making different decisions based on their situation.

Governor Burgum says we have a record spike in unemployment. He says there have been 9,926 filings for unemployment in one week. He says the state had a record number on Friday, March 20, with 2,594. Previous to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state had a run rate of about 400 per week.

Governor Burgum advises snowbirds coming back from winter in a different state to practice social distancing and if they return possibly practice self-isolation for 14 days. It’s a good public health practice if they can do that.

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