Broward’s New Order Limits – But Doesn’t Close – Restaurant Service


FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida – The Broward County Emergency Order that residents have been waiting for has been signed.

No more than six people are needed at a table to dine at the restaurant, and the catering service is scheduled to end at 10 p.m. each evening, Mayor Dale Holness said Wednesday evening.

The order, signed by County Administrator Bertha Henry and taking effect at 12:01 a.m. Friday, also provides for tougher penalties for companies that violate coronavirus safety measures. The first violation calls for a 24-hour shutdown, but subsequent violations will have a 72-hour shutdown.

Vacation rentals will also be limited to those who have signed up. No guests and no more than 10 people allowed, Holness said.

“If we do not all take responsibility for reducing the spread of this virus, the economy will continue to stagnate or worsen,” said the mayor.

Residents and businesses in Broward were eagerly awaiting whether the county would begin to reimpose the closures.

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It turns out that Broward’s measures aren’t as strict as in Miami-Dade County, where dining inside restaurants has been halted.

“Since Miami made their announcement, there has certainly been a bit of anxiety, a bit of uncertainty as to what’s going to happen next for us,” said Sasha Formica, marketing manager for the Be Nice restaurant group. . “We really can’t wait to find out so that we can move forward with the planning and preparation and see what this next chapter has in store for us. “

Be the restaurants of Nice include Coconuts, The Foxy Brown and Top Hat Delicatessen in Fort Lauderdale.

Formica, which spoke to Local 10 News ahead of Holness’s announcement, said the group had adjusted to make the most of a difficult situation after being closed for weeks before reopening.

“We were lucky, once reopened, to be quite busy. We took reservations, we brought people in and we were able to keep a lot of our staff, ”she said. “Restaurants have been made responsible for monitoring and vetting their customers over the past few weeks, and stricter rules can force people to follow the rules. “

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Broward reported 1,186 more coronavirus cases and one death on Wednesday, bringing the county’s total number of COVID-19 positive cases to 23,781 and deaths to 419.

And a particularly concerning figure is the positivity rate. More than 14% of tests analyzed on Tuesday came back positive – above the two-week average of about 13%.

Holness met with the city’s various mayors earlier this week, and while there was some disagreement over the appropriate next step, Holness said something needs to be done to slow the rise in the number of COVID- 19 as hospital capacity decreased.

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“We have to do something because it is not sustainable where we are,” he said. “The increases are going to go up unless we do something. “

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