WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a series of executive orders Friday intended to help Florida combat the coronavirus.
Among them was an order closing non-essential businesses in Broward and Palm Beach counties through the end of the month.
But many residents, customers and perhaps even business owners themselves seem to be uncertain about which places are allowed to remain open under the governor's decree.
Executive Order 20-70 spells out which businesses must cease operations during this time.
Businesses required to close
- All restaurants, bars, taverns, pubs, nightclubs, banquet halls, cocktail lounges, cabarets, breweries, cafeterias and any other alcohol and/or food service establishments with seating for more than 10 people.
- All movie theaters, concert houses, auditoriums and playhouses.
- Bowling alleys.
- Gymnasiums and fitness centers.
Businesses allowed to remain open
- Grocery stores.
- Gas stations and convenience stores.
- Restaurants that are "ancillary to essential services," including airports, ports, secure facilities and hospitals.
- Gyms and fitness centers in hotels with a capacity of 10 or less, that are amenities of a residential building, inside any fire or police station, or are located inside any single-occupant office building.
Many restaurants are still open for business, however, taking advantage of an exemption allowing that "such establishments may operate their kitchens for the purpose of providing delivery services."
As well, any restaurants with seating for less than 10 patrons are allowed to remain open.
In his order, DeSantis designated that counties would make the final determination as to which businesses are deemed essential.
"Other essential services may be determined by the county administrators," he wrote.
DeSantis said the closures will remain in effect through March 31, "but may be renewed upon the written request of the county administrator."