alcohol sales N.C. restaurants ending earlier

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper says he’s curbing alcohol sales hours at restaurants starting later this week in another effort to stem COVID-19.

Cooper announced on Tuesday that starting Friday the eateries, distilleries and breweries will have to cut off sales at 11 p.m. instead of 2 a.m.

Health officials says they’re concerned more young people are contracting the virus and want to discourage late-night gatherings where social distancing isn’t happening.

The order doesn’t apply to grocery or convenience stores, and bars remain closed.

The state reported a record number of virus-related hospitalizations on Tuesday, but the health secretary some case trends are stabilizing.  

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