ORLANDO, Fla. — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a statewide crackdown on Tuesday on businesses that violate emergency orders related to the deadly coronavirus and social distancing.
Speaking at Orlando Regional Medical Center, the governor said that, since last week, Alcohol, Beverage, and Tobacco officers have been checking bars and restaurants every night from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. to make sure they're not over capacity.
"The guidelines are in place for a reason," DeSantis said. "You want to have environments that are not gonna be huge risks for transmission. And if you don't follow the guidelines and you pack huge numbers of people indoors that are very close, you're creating an environment that you're gonna see more spread."
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Halsey Beshears, the head of Florida's Department Of Business And Professional Regulation, said his agency suspended the liquor license at The Knight's Pub in Orlando on Monday after 28 patrons and 13 employees tested positive for COVID-19 due to over capacity.
"Those that are flagrant, we will be suspending their license," said Beshears. "We're gonna continue this until we get this right."
Last week, Palm Beach County announced the formation of a new task force to enforce state and local emergency orders related to the coronavirus.
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According to the latest numbers from the Florida Department of Health, there are 103,503 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state, including 3,238 deaths.