Town Services Affected by COVID-19
The Town of Hillsborough is taking a number of actions to slow the spread of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. These actions affect some town services. Essential services are continuing, such as police and fire protection, solid waste collection, and water and sewer service.
Gov. Roy Cooper has issued a series of statewide orders restricting certain activities to slow the spread of COVID-19. Phase 2 easing of restrictions began at 5 p.m. May 22. See the Statewide COVID-19 Restrictions page on this website for more information.
The response to the outbreak is rapidly changing. Please check this page often for updates on changes in service, and subscribe to town news releases.
The Town of Hillsborough declared a state of emergency on March 13, due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. It was updated on March 18 and 23 to:
- Add temporary changes to the process for establishing new water service accounts.
- Waive water and sewer bill penalties and late fees.
- Place the emergency proclamation on auto-renew every five days unless it is updated or rescinded.
On March 26, the town issued a proclamation consenting to the application of a declaration by Orange County within its jurisdiction. See the the Statewide COVID-19 Restrictions page on this website for more information.
Town offices, staffing and meetings
Town offices and staffing
Town offices are closed to the public until further notice. Town employees are telecommuting when possible. Customers can receive assistance by phone and email. See the Contact Us page of the town’s website.
The Hillsborough Board of Commissioners's virtual meetings may be viewed on the town's YouTube channel.
Many Hillsborough advisory board meetings have been canceled. Any virtual meetings may be viewed on the town's YouTube channel.
The State of the Town Address on March 23 was a virtual event. See the summary news release or a video of the address below.
Orange Rural Fire Department
Orange Rural Fire Department's station and trucks are currently not open for tours. Limiting public access helps avoid potential cross contamination of the virus in case firefighters have been exposed during a call or in case visitors are carrying the virus. Firefighters are less likely to don personal protective equipment at the station.
If you need assistance and are by the station, you can ring the bell at the side door by the parking lot. However, everyone should call 911 for emergencies.
The town contracts for fire service through Orange Rural Fire Department. For more information, see the Fire Department website.
Garbage and yard waste
Weekly garbage and yard waste collections have not changed. Collection of loose leaves ended in January. Leaves must be bagged in biodegradable bags for collection.
For the monthly bulk items collection, please place only large items out for collection to prevent the need for Public Works staff to handle items by hand. Collection of bulk items takes place the second full week (starting on Sunday) of each month. See the Garbage Collection page.
Orange County handles recycling services. See the county website for any changes in service.
Recreation and special events
Members of the community are encouraged to get outside for walks, runs, bike rides and other recreation in public spaces, but community members must maintain a distance of 6 feet from others to avoid spreading the virus. Gatherings of more than 25 people are prohibited. Community members should wear masks in situations where social distancing is difficult. See the news release for more information. See information and a video below on social distancing.
- Town greenways and open spaces remain available for public use. This includes trails and fields in town parks. Organized games that bring people into distances that are too close should not take place.
- Picnic shelters and fields are available for use with social distancing. Community members are encouraged to disinfect picnic tables and benches before use. Organized games that bring people close together on open spaces should not occur.
- Playground equipment at town parks is closed for use under state orders because it is not sanitized, and its use brings people into distances that are too close.
No public recreation spaces will be available for rental use by groups or individuals until further notice.
The approval process for special event permits has been delayed until further notice.
Water and sewer billing
Water and sewer customers are urged to pay their bills via credit or debit card online or by telephone. The Billing and Collections Office is closed to the public until further notice.
- Pay online: www.municipalonlinepayments.com/hillsboroughnc.
- Pay by phone: 833-262-5902 toll-free 24 hours a day.
Disconnections and penalties
The following policies will remain in place until end dates are set by the Hillsborough Board of Commissioners:
- Water and sewer customers will not have their utility services disconnected for nonpayment.
- The town will not impose new penalties for late payments or collect on penalties that were imposed on accounts as of March 31. This policy only applies to late payment fees and penalties, not fees imposed for other reasons.
- Customers can request a payment plan of up to 12 months by emailing or calling 919-296-9450.
The process for establishing new service during the outbreak is temporarily changed to remove the requirement to visit the office. To set up a new account, email or call 919-296-9450. The required deposit for new service will be added to your first bill.
N.C. Executive Order No. 124 — regarding utility disconnections and billing, effective March 31
Orange County census launch parties have been canceled, and the opening of Be Counted sites has been delayed. The Hillsborough Town Hall Annex is among sites that were expected to offer access to public computers for census responses.
Do your duty still
Every person counted brings to our community more than $1,800 in state and federal funding. Congressional representation also is based on the population count. North Carolina is projected to gain one seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Your household can respond now through the following two options. If you did not receive a census invitation in the mail, you can still respond. You only need your address to respond.
- 2020 census response website: https://my2020census.gov
- Toll-free phone number: 1-844-330-2020 for responses in English; 844-468-2020 for responses in Spanish.
See the town’s Census webpage, which includes information on how to be counted and the safety of responses.