TAMPA, Fla. - Florida has officially begun its reopening process with Governor Ron DeSantis' "slow, phased approach."
On Monday morning, the governor's stay-at-home order was officially lifted, with his phase one plan going into effect, allowing only certain businesses to open. Social distancing is still expected under this plan.
- Restaurants may offer outdoor seating with six feet between tables and indoor seating at 25% capacity
- Retails can operate at 25% of indoor capacity
- Schools must continue distance learning
- As before, all visits to senior living facility are prohibited
- For hospitals, elective surgeries can resume
- Bars, gyms and personal services such as hair salons, massage parlors and nail salons must remain closed
Hair salons are not allowed to open under the latest directive from DeSantis, but, over the weekend, he said he will work on a plan to allow salons to reopen sooner than later.
Some state parks are reopening Monday with access to trails, day-use areas and beach access with limited facilities.
Visitors are asked to practice social distancing, to limit group sizes to 10 or less and to stay six feet apart. For information on which state parks are opening, head over to the Florida State Parks website.
Meanwhile, more beaches in the Tampa Bay areas are opening.
In Pinellas County, beachgoers can return Monday, but must stay six feet apart from others and not gather in groups larger than 10. The parking lots and restrooms will be open. Public playgrounds remain closed. There will be deputies and city officers enforcing social distancing.
In Manatee County, they are much stricter with the beach rules. Public parking is open, but limited to two hours only. Beachgoers may be on the beach for normal beach activities for only two hours. Law enforcement officers will be on hand to enforce the 2-hourt turnover. Citations and fines will be given to those who stay beyond the time limit.
In Sarasota County, beaches have been open for a week for exercise only, but now beachgoers can use it for all purposes. All public parking, restrooms and walkways are open. No time limit will be enforced. Sunbathing, chairs and coolers are allowed.
If you feel sick:
The Florida Department of Health has opened a COVID-19 Call Center at 1-866-779-6121. Agents will answer questions around the clock. Questions may also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Email responses will be sent during call center hours.
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