TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Effective immediately, all restaurants and bars in Florida can only be open for delivery and take-out until early May, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced on Friday afternoon.
The governor signed an executive order to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
Restaurants can still sell alcohol for pick-up and delivery orders, however customers must provide proof of identification.
"It's gonna be hard for some of these restaurants to survive in this environment," Gov DeSantis said at a news conference on Friday. "We've gotta do what is safe for everybody."
The governor added that he waived regulations to allow restaurants to serve alcohol with take-out and delivery orders, which he hopes will provide them some financial stability.
The order also forces all gyms and fitness centers in Florida to close. The only exceptions are fitness centers in residential buildings, gyms that have a maximum capacity of 10 people or less in hotels, fitness centers in fire and police stations, and those in single-occupant office buildings.
The ban on restaurants and fitness centers will end on Friday, May 8, according to the executive order.
In addition, Gov. DeSantis is stopping elective surgeries at hospitals across the state.
"You don't want those elective surgeries to take too much space in the hospital," DeSantis said. "Much more than even that was the personal protective equipment. This is in such short supply that we need to make sure all our health care providers are saving their PPE and using them for eventual COVID-19 patients."
Earlier on Friday, Gov. DeSantis ordered the closure of all beaches and many businesses in Palm Beach and Broward Counties.
Broward, Miami-Dade, and Palm Beach Counties lead the state in the number of coronavirus cases.
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