Florida enters Phase Three of reopening plan, Gov. Ron DeSantis announces

Governor DeSantis Moves Florida Into

Ron DeSantis, pictured during a news conference last month, says his state is ready to respond if a surge of coronavirus infections emerges.

Ron DeSantis announced that he has signed an order moving the state into phase three of reopening at a news conference today.

He said that the state is moving into Phase 3 which means that there will be no restrictions for restaurant to operate at 50 percent capacity or higher.

Local governments will still be able to restrict restaurants to as low as a 50% capacity, but there will be no statewide policy. Restaurants can now operate at full capacity along with theme parks.

"I think that this will be very, very important to the industry", DeSantis said.

Florida businesses can still operate with any self-imposed restrictions under the order.

"We're not telling you [that] you have to, but we're not going to stand in the way of that", he added.

Local governments can not collect and fines or fees on individuals, and that includes to enforce a mask mandate. Since then, DeSantis said, "we've actually seen more economic activity, more interaction".

On Thursday, DeSantis said he wants to prohibit local governments from closing restaurants and bars, which many municipalities did earlier this year to slow the spread of COVID-19.

According to the latest numbers from the Florida Department of Health, there are 695,887 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 13,915 coronavirus-related deaths in the state.

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