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Student loan debt through Bank of ND to be deferred

People who have taken out student loans through the Bank of North Dakota will have the option of deferring their payments for six months due to the new coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Doug Burgum announced on Tuesday.

Interest on the loans will continue to accrue over those six months, meaning payments might increase when they resume, and people must request to defer the loans, either by filling out an online form at bnd.nd.gov or by calling the Bank of North Dakota at 1.800.472.2166, extension 328.5660, or by emailing bnd,nd.gov/contact. Burgum said interest rates on the loans are also set to be decreased by about 1 percent.

An additional four cases of coronavirus were identified on Tuesday, bringing the total number in the state to 36. Seven people with the illness are hospitalized. The latest cases identified are in Burleigh, Dunn, and Cass counties. In the reading area, three cases are in Ward County and two are in Pierce County.

None of the cases have been identified at nursing homes or long term care facilities in the state and Burgum said he wants to keep it that way. All of the nursing homes and long term care facilities in the state received visits this week to ensure they are following procedures to help keep residents safe from contracting the virus that can be particularly dangerous for the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.

Burgum also reiterated the importance of people staying home if they are sick and practicing self isolation if they or a family member suspects they have been exposed to the virus. Burgum also suggests that people note down whom they come into contact with each day so those people can be identified and contacted about possible coronavirus exposure.

Coronavirus cases are skyrocketing nationally, particularly in New York. Burgum said North Dakota is not immune from such a crisis. Each day with a relatively slow increase in cases gives the state more time to prepare, he said.

By the numbers in North Dakota

1602 – Total Tested (+162 individuals from Tuesday)

1566 – Negative (+158 individuals from Tuesday)

36 – Positive (+4 individuals new from Tuesday)

7- Hospitalized (+3 individuals new from Tuesday)

– Source: North Dakota Department of Health

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