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Posted on: March 24, 2020

Orange County encourages residents to transact county business online or by phone

Image of historic Orange County Courthouse

Orange County urges residents to remain at home if possible during this COVID-19 outbreak. Any residents who need to transact business with Orange County Government are asked to use our available online services or the telephone.

Below is a list of which departments are offering limited functionality during this time, either over the phone or via the website. If it is an urgent or emergency situation, staff will respond appropriately. Some offices may be able to schedule an in-person appointment, but residents must call before visiting the office to arrange an appointment.


Aging is serving drive-by lunches Monday-Friday from 12-12:30 at both of the Senior Centers. Staff are available by phone and email. For in-person visits, appointment must be scheduled. Durable Medical equipment loan program is available. Please call for assistance. A limited supply of adult incontinence supplies are also available. Aging Transitions, Senior Center programming and Volunteer Connect 55+ staff are available by phone or email.

  • Passmore Center (919-245-2015)
  • Seymour Center (919-968-2070)
  • Aging Helpline (919-968-2087)

Animal Services

The Animal Shelter is closed to the public, but some services, including adoptions, are available via appointments. Call 919-942-7387, and follow the prompts that best fit your needs. Please note the following changes:

  • In shelter operations, meet and greets will be limited to a single person meeting with a single animal they have identified online
  • Animal Control field services will limit response to public nuisance complaints. Specifically, we will respond only if: 1) we can do so by phone; 2) the complaint is about a chronic issue; and 3) there is a dog at large.
  • Spay and neuter operations will be suspended in order to conserve personal protective equipment and medical resources. Adopters will be provided a spay and neuter voucher to be used when we resume operations.
  • Owner surrenders or bringing stray animals to shelter: We are currently asking that public delay surrenders if at all possible. Please call to make an appointment for bringing any animal to the shelter: 919-942-7387, option 2. After-hours night drop is open and being checked daily.
  • Reporting lost & found pets: Visit or call 919-942-7387, option 2, if you need help filing a report.
  • Licensing: Visit for details and instructions.
  • Donations: Visit for details and instructions.

Child Support Services

Staff will be available by phone (919-245-2175) or email. The State’s automated system can be reached at 800-992-9457. Additionally, the echildsupport portal ( can be used for the following:

  • Apply Online for Child Support Services
  • Case Information
  • Payment Information
  • Pay Child Support

Criminal Justice Resources Department

  • Referral forms and information available on the CJRD website:
  • Pretrial Services – Will continue to complete intakes at Jail and provide recommendations for release for stakeholders for daily first appearances or bond motions. Call Ted Dorsi (919-245-2970) or Cait Fenhagen (919-245-2303) or cell (919-423-4272).
  • Treatment Courts – Will not have court sessions currently, but Coordinator and Case Manager still working with participants and ensuring support and accountability. Call Sean O’Hare (919-886-8855) or Andrea McSwain (910-918-8597).
  • Adult and Youth Behavioral Health Services – Allison Zirkel (919-245-2304) and Nancy Lappenbusch (919-245-2311) will continue to coordinate mental health and substance use services and referrals for in-custody population primarily and will continue to provide case management and therapeutic support for court-involved individuals who have been released. They will work remotely and only in court, office or Jail as needed.
  • Pre-Arrest Diversion – Desmond Frierson (919-245-2312) will be working remotely but still accepting referrals and completing intakes by phone.
  • Local Reentry Council – Our Coordinator and Case Manager will be working primarily remotely but still accepting referrals and supporting and providing case management and resources for LRC clients. Keith Patterson (919-245-2064) or Tiffany Bullard (984-439-5998).
  • Restoration Legal Counsel – Emma Ferriola-Bruckenstein (919-451-0281) will work remotely and will still accept referrals and complete intakes and prepare motions and orders remotely.



Applications for Medicaid and Food and Nutrition Services can be completed online at

For assistance with completing applications for DSS programs, call 919-245-2800. Orange Works employment center is accepting appointments only. Please call 919-245-2800 and ask for employment services.

Economic Development

Orange County Economic Development is closed. Staff is available by phone and e-mail to assist with all economic development inquiries. Call (919) 245-2325, or e-mail at with questions. The department’s web site is as follows:


Effective immediately, the Orange County Board of Elections will suspend in-person services offered to the public. Staff continues to work and can be reached by telephone at 919-245-2350 and email at, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – Noon and 1-5 p.m.

The public is encouraged to utilize our website to access voter registration forms and information at and absentee ballot request information and forms at These forms can be mailed to PO Box 220, Hillsborough, 27278 or dropped off at our office at 208 S. Cameron St, Hillsborough, 27278. Our foyer is open during business hours and forms may be obtained and/or placed in a secure drop box.

Erosion Control/Stormwater Functions & Services

Staff will primarily work in the field with social distancing protocol. They may stop in the office if non-digital plans are not available. The division will be closed to walk in traffic. If a meeting or a question is requested or posed, please email or call.

  • Plan Review: By electronic submittal at our drop off site (131 West Margaret Lane, Hillsborough West Campus Office Building 1st floor lobby)
  • Check Submittal: Secure Drop Box; Same location as above. Provide email so a scanned receipt can be sent via email. If personal and physical receipt is necessary, please make an appointment.
  • Permits: After plan review is complete, permit acknowledgement will be received via email and permit received at Preconstruction meeting.
  • Preconstruction Meeting: The Preconstruction Meeting will be held in the field employing social distancing precautions.
  • Inspections: Inspections will be conducted as needed. Instructions regarding field conditions or activities will be sent via email, as well as, any required reports from 3rd party inspectors.
  • Communications: Please use the numbers or emails listed below.

Office Numbers

*These numbers will be forwarded to their mobile numbers.


In order to protect everyone’s health during the COVID-19 pandemic, Orange County Health Department is no longer accepting walk-in appointments. However we are offering telehealth appointments to meet your immediate medical needs. If you need medical attention please call 919-245-2400 to schedule a telehealth appointment. Please do not walk into the clinic to request an appointment. If you are having a medical emergency, as always, call 911.

Below are the hours for the Health Clinic at Whitted Human Services Center in Hillsborough.

  • Mondays: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. telehealth and by appointment only
  • Tuesdays: 9:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. telehealth and by appointment only
  • Wednesdays: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. telehealth and by appointment only
  • Thursday: 9:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. telehealth and by appointment only
  • Friday: 8 a.m. -Noon telehealth and by appointment only

Below are the hours for the health clinic at Southern Human Services Building in Chapel Hill:

  • Mondays: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. by appointment only
  • Tuesdays: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. telehealth by appointment only
  • Wednesdays: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. by appointment only
  • Thursday: 9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. by appointment only
  • Friday: 8 a.m. - Noon telehealth by appointment only

Housing and Community Development

All Housing & Community Development programs will remain available via phone and Internet.

Human Resources 

Please call our main number at 919-245-2550 for information before visiting the office. Limited services are available.

Human Rights and Relations

If you experience discrimination in housing because of the COVID-19 pandemic or for other reason, please contact the Orange County Department of Human Rights and Relations at:


  • Office Hours: The office is closed to the general public. Staff will be primarily working at home and in the field from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. If making your permit payments call (919) 245-2600 to pay with credit card.
  • Meetings: Meeting are avoided. Correspondence and communication will be occurring by phone or email.
  • Plan Review: Residential reviews are performed electronically by reviewer working from home. Commercial projects are reviewed in office by Chief Building Official, one physical set of plan documents are needed for review.
  • Fee Payment: Payment by credit card will be processed by phone only. Cash payments cannot be accepted at this time, Checks are discouraged, please make all payments by credit card.
  • Check Submittal: Payment of cash, credit card and checks are processed in office. Customers are encouraged to pay by credit card over the phone. In person payments are to be scheduled.
  • Permits: Submission and processing of permit documents are through electronic and remote means. Submission of large format plan documents are to be coordinated with plans examiner or property development specialist.
  • Preconstruction Meeting: Not being scheduled until after this crisis abates.
  • Inspections: Request for inspections are taken with call to: (919) 245-2600. Please identify when scheduling if inspection is to be performed in an occupied building. Inspectors are working remotely from home and vehicles. All inspections are scheduled for the next business day. Coordinate any specific inspection need with the inspector himself.


Please use the numbers or emails listed

*These numbers are forwarded to their mobile numbers.

**These emails receive application and document submissions

Statutorily required

  • General Statute 143-139 mandates code enforcement inspections be performed within 2 business days of being requested.
  • General Statute 153A-357(a1) requires Residential plans to be initially reviewed within 15 days of submission.


OCPT will continue to operate the Hillsborough Circulator from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily effective April 1. Transportation to medical appointments will be provided by appointment only. These services will be provided fare-free until further notice.

For medical appointments, reservations are required. Non-Medicaid Trips: Call Reservation Line 919-245-2004. Medicaid Trips: Call Orange County Department of Social Service Voicemail 919-245-2774 or Fax 919-732-2137.

Orange County/Chapel Hill Visitor’s Center

The building is closed, but staff is available to assist with visitor inquiries. Call 919-245-4320, Monday through Friday, or email at with questions. 


Office hours
Current Planning offices shall be open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily for the receipt of applications and handling of previously scheduled appointments.  Until further notice, members of the general public needing to see a planner will need to schedule an appointment to do so.

Planning staff can be reached at the following:

Meetings:  Meeting(s) shall occur by appointment during revised operating hours listed above.  Please note staff will observe appropriate social distancing requirements and maintain six feet separation at all times.

Plan Review:  Applications for development projects shall be accepted:

  • Electronically via e-mail
  • By Mail sent to:
    •  Orange County Planning
    • ATTN: Current Planning Division
    • PO Box 8181
    • Hillsborough, NC 27278
  • Dropped off in person during the revised operating hours listed above.

Submittal of Fees: Fees can be submitted with the application (mail and in person). Those applicant’s needed to pay using a credit card shall be contacted by staff to process a payment over the phone.

PermitsPermits shall be processed as quickly as possible. Please note deficiencies in the application submittal will impact staff’s ability to process the development request.

Inspections: Inspections shall be completed either on a first come basis or via appointment. If staff is required to meet applicants in the field, appropriate social distancing policies shall be adhered to.

Communications:  Current Planning staff can be reached at the e-mail addresses and phone numbers listed above.

Recycling/Solid Waste

Curbside collection of 18 gallon orange recycling bins is suspended until further notice. This is being done to minimize collectors’ contact with household recyclables. Residents who wish to start using a blue roll cart instead of a bin can call 919-968-2788 or send an email to to request a 95 gallon cart.

If you wish to continue using your bins, you may recycle at any of the five Waste and Recycling Centers during operating hours or any of the four unstaffed recycling-only sites open 24/7 (www.orangecountync/recycling  for locations). Residents are encouraged to limit their use of the Waste and Recycling Centers to one time each week to support social distancing and the safety of the staff and other residents using the sites. In addition, residents should remain in their vehicles until the receptacle needed is free so as to allow residents to maintain six feet distance from others.

Curbside Recycling will be collected as usual. AS ALWAYS: Keep out any tissues, paper toweling, bagged materials or other contaminants.

Register of Deeds

Register of Deeds services are available via appointment only. Please see the list below for specific services. If you need something else, please call 919-245-2685.

  • Attorneys are urged to utilize our Electronic Recording System or call 800-460-5657.
  • Marriage License: Complete the online marriage application then call 919-245-2700 to schedule an appointment. Applicants only allowed in the office.
  • Notaries that need to take their oath: 919-245-2685.
  • Veterans needing to record their discharge papers: 919-245-2700.
  • Attorneys, paralegals, etc., may mail in their documents or use the drop box located at the front of the building, this includes Assumed Business Name filings. Please read instructions located on the drop box before you place your document inside.
  • If you have a Plat or documents requiring a Split, Merge, or multiple PIN sheet please call 919-245-2685.

Soil & Water Board of Supevisors

Call 919-245-2750 to schedule an appointment.


The doors to the Tax Office will be closed and we will provide services by phone 919-245-2100, email or mail Orange County Tax Office, PO Box 8181, Hillsborough, NC 27278-8181. Field appraisers will continue field work on properties where reviews can be done street side.

Residents needing to pay taxes are encouraged to make payments by credit/debit cards: or 1-844-435-3981. Payments may also be made by mail (see address above) or at the outside drop box at the tax office entrance, 228 South Churton Street, Hillsborough.

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