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Mandatory curfew on Palm Beach starts Tuesday at 9 p.m.

Posted: 2:38 PM, Mar 16, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-17 02:14:26-04

PALM BEACH, Fla. — A mandatory curfew in the town of Palm Beach will start Tuesday night to combat the spread of the coronavirus, officials announced Monday.

It will begin at 9 p.m. and end at 6 a.m. each day. Exceptions will be for town residents, town ID holders and medical personnel. And all public beaches and the Phipps Ocean Tennis Center are shutting down.

No curfews have been instituted elsewhere in Palm Beach County or the Treasure Coast.

On Monday, measures were already taking place. And it's noticeable already walking by restaurants along the island.

There's something very off with when you look through the window of the restaurant Buccan. The place should be crawling with diners in the evening time but it's empty. You can see chefs hard at work but that's it. A decision by the owners has changed the eatery's atmosphere for now.

"That was a tough decision for sure we've got between here and Grotto in West Palm Beach we've got a couple hundred employees. So to put 200 people out of work is tough decision and we decided that last night," owner Clay Conley said.

Conley and his partner decided to close the dining rooms of their three restaurants and go to curbside delivery.

"Obviously we're not making a ton of money and that's not the idea but we want to provide a service to everybody on the island and everybody off the island in this time of need to have something delicious to eat," he said.

Bob Topol and others say the food is too good to stay away.

"There's kind of an older clientele around here that might be more susceptible to you know, illness so people are being very careful and I respect that," Topol said.

Conley says it may get worse before it gets better.

"Hopefully it won't last to long," he said.

Restaurants, businesses, and private clubs are urged to greatly scale back their operations and limit their capacity to 50 people maximum. Restaurants are encouraged to close for seating, but still offer delivery and curbside pick-up.

SPECIAL COVERAGE: Coronavirus | What's open, closed?

The town is encouraging houses of worship to cancel all services.

Public access to town buildings will be limited starting Tuesday. You'll still be able to reach town staff by phone or email during regular business hours.

To learn more about the restrictions on Palm Beach, click here.

This curfew is only for the town of Palm Beach, not Palm Beach County.