COVID-19 updates: South Carolina health officials reported 636 new cases of coronavirus on Wednesday, with 32 additional confirmed deaths.

With 4,096 tests on Wednesday, 15.5 percent came back positive.

As of 1:32 p.m. Oct. 28, via S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control:
Confirmed cases in S.C.:  165,477 (+636)
Positive tests in Charleston County (total): 16,676 (+27)
Negative tests in S.C.: 1,695,189
Deaths in S.C. from COVID-19: 3,634 (+32)

Top Stories:

The South Carolina Ports Authority is welcoming a gaggle of new ship-to-shore cranes to the new container port opening soon in southern North Charleston along the Cooper River. Source: SPA Berkeley County School Board approved a measure requiring students from preschool through second grade to return to the classroom on Jan. 4. The district reopened this fall, but students who did not feel comfortable returning could enroll in the online “blended pathway” program. 17,192 students district-wide were enrolled in this program as of mid-October. The vote to bring back that group of students for in-person learning was unanimous with all eight board members. Source: P&C

Vice President Mike Pence held a rally in a Greenville airplane hangar Greenville Tuesday where he spoke three days after his chief of staff, top adviser and three aides tested positive for COVID-19. Pence called U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, who spoke before the vice president, a “stalwart, courageous, principled leader.” Graham and Democrat Jaime Harrison will meet in a final televised debate Friday night. “This is the biggest challenge I’ve faced,” said Graham at the rally. Source: Greenville News

What we’re reading:

Vox: “PPP loans were supposed to be forgiven. So far, that hasn’t happened”
CBS Sports: “Coyotes drafting Mitchell Miller is latest proof that NHL’s anti-racism initiatives are ringing hollow” The New York Times: “Pfizer CEO all but rules out vaccine before election day”
Vox: “How long it could take to count the vote this year, explained”

More from the City Paper:
– Graft Wine Shop pouring inside for first time since pandemic’s onset – Recap: Our Endorsements
– 200,000 in SC could get health coverage with Medicaid expansion