What is Florida's phase 1 of Gov. DeSantis' plan to reopen state?

Posted at 5:51 PM, Apr 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-29 17:52:03-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis unveiled his "SAFE. SMART. STEP-BY-STEP PLAN" to reopen Florida Wednesday night.

During Gov. DeSantis' press conference, he announced the first phase of reopening businesses can begin Monday, May 4, with restaurants and businesses allowed to open on limited capacities.

Here are the basics of phase one of Gov. DeSantis' plan:

  • Schools must keep distance learning
  • Visits to senior living facilities are prohibited
  • Elective surgeries can resume
  • Restaurants may offer outdoor seating with six feet of space between tables
  • Indoor seating at restaurants must be at 25% capacity
  • No change for bars, gyms and personal services, like hair dressers
  • Vulnerable individuals should avoid close contact with people outside the home
  • Everyone should maximize physical distance from others while in public
  • Avoid socializing in groups of more than 10 people in circumstances that do not "readily allow for physical distancing"
  • Face masks are recommended for those in face-to-face interactions and where you can't social distance.
  • The reopening plan applies for Florida counties except Palm Beach, Miami-Dade and Broward counties, Gov. DeSantis said.

    "We will get Florida back on its feet," Gov. DeSantis said Wednesday.

    Florida residents had been under a statewide safer-at-home order since April 2. As of Wednesday afternoon, Gov. DeSantis did not say if he will let the order expire on April 30 or if he will extend the order.


  • Gov. DeSantis issues 'safer-at-home' order directing residents to 'limit movements' to essential activities
  • The difference between 'Safer at Home' and 'Stay at Home' orders
  • Collier County Commissioners vote to reopen Collier beaches

Earlier in the week, Gov. DeSantis said his plan was to reopen the Sunshine State in “baby steps.”

"Folks should see a light at the end of the tunnel for the state of Florida. Now it’s not going to be something that a switch is going to be flipped," Gov. DeSantis said at Tampa General Hospital earlier in the week. "This is going to be slow and steady wins the race. It’s going to be methodical, very data driven, and there’s gonna probably be some people that think it’s too slow."

As of Wednesday, Florida has more than 33,000 coronavirus cases, more than 5,400 hospitalizations and more than 1,200 deaths, according to DOH.

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