Now that the Governor has implemented Phase 2 of the Safe. Smart. Step-by-Step Plan for Florida's Recovery, government entities are allowed to resume in-person meetings with the understanding that social distancing guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) should be followed.
The Board of County Commissioners had previously been holding virtual meetings while under Phase One and all Public Hearings were temporarily postponed. Now that the Board has returned to Commission Chambers for meetings, County staff has been busy establishing methods for individuals to attend meetings while maintaining social distancing.
Chairs in the Commission Chambers have been reduced to achieve proper spacing, however additional seats and monitors are being added to the hallways to allow individuals to watch the meeting from outside the Chambers. A number system will be implemented so that individuals wishing to speak can be called into the Chambers individually.
A large tent has also been set up in front of the building to allow for additional seating outside, should someone choose to use it. This area will be equipped with monitors and speakers to broadcast the meeting taking place inside, as well as fans to make users more comfortable. Should it be raining, residents will be able to utilize the hallways and monitors inside the building.
These are just a few of the changes being made to increase safety for residents wishing to attend Commission meetings. Other changes include distribution of masks, installation of sanitizer dispensers, and designated points to enter and exit the facility.
For those not wishing to attend in person, please note that meetings will continue to be streamed online as they always have. We also have also established an email address and phone number for residents to be able to submit public comments for Board meetings. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (904) 530-6009 and leave a message. Your comments will be read aloud at the meeting. You can also request to speak by sending an email or calling the number above and leaving a message with your name, phone number and a brief description of what you would like to speak about. We will call you during the meeting.
If you have any questions, please contact the County Manager’s Office at (904) 530-6010 or email email@example.com.
Due to the recent dramatic increase in numbers of positive cases in NE Florida, and the exponential numbers of contact tracing investigations that must be performed, “close contacts” of cases may be notified by the individual positive case before they can be reached by Public Health Officials. Take immediate action if you are notified that you are a close contact to a positive case or have a positive test result.
If you have had a sample collected for testing, you should self-quarantine (i.e. sequester yourself from others) until you know your results.
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, self-isolate (i.e. “lockdown” at home – you should not go out, you should not let non-household members inside with you, and you should not let others get close to you). Public health officials will let you know when you can be released from isolation. Let your close contacts know you have tested positive.
If you are told you have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, stay quarantined at home for 14 days and monitor your health for symptoms. Getting a negative test result while you are under the 14-day quarantine does not change the length of time you are required to stay sequestered at home.
These instructions must be followed if we are to limit the spread of COVID-19 in our community. Community members are encouraged to work together to minimize exposure by using cloth masks whenever in public indoor spaces. Free cloth masks are available throughout Nassau County. Please see below for the infographic from the Florida Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
At Thursday's meeting, the Board approved Executive Order No 16, mandating face coverings at all indoor public spaces where social distancing is not possible.
”Every operator, employee, customer or patron, over the age of six (6), of a business establishment must wear a face mask or covering at all times while indoors at that business establishment unless he or she is able to engage in social distancing or unless wearing a face mask or covering significantly interferes with the provision or receipt of goods or services offered or received at that establishment (i.e. patrons at a restaurant, clients at a barber shop or hair salon, patients at a dentist’s office).”
The Order does provide exemptions for public safety and law enforcement personnel because their personal protective gear is governed by their agencies.
The Order goes into effect at 7:00 a.m. on Friday, July 3, 2020 and will remain in effect for 30 days.
The City of Fernandina Beach has issued an Emergency Order effective immediately, mandating mandatory masks. Nassau County Board of County Commissioners will also order a similar resolution shortly.
Nassau County Chamber of Commerce staff will be at the Chamber office tomorrow, Friday, July 3rd from 9:00-10:00 A.M. handing out masks for business owners to give to employees and customers.
Below are key points from the City's resolution. To read the entire Emergency Order, CLICK HERE.
The City’s local planning process is not static. It is continuous, evolving, and ongoing. As such, the Comprehensive Plan is audited from time to time. Pursuant to Chapter 163.3191, F.S., the City completed and adopted an Evaluation and Appraisal Review (EAR) Report in December 2019.
At this time, policy amendments are required to satisfy the more recently enacted requirements of Florida Statues 163.3177 (Seasonal Population), 163.3178 (Peril of Flood), and 163.3177(6)(c) (Water Supply Facility Work Plan). The City’s proposed Comprehensive Plan amendments serve to fulfill these requirements and complete the City’s EAR based Plan changes. The public is invited to access, review, and offer comments on the proposed changes at www.fbfl.us/EAR. Please provide feedback through the comment form provided in the City’s website or by emailing Kelly Gibson at KGibson@fbfl.city.
All proposed changes will be reviewed by the Planning Advisory Board through two public meetings held on July 8, 2020 and July 22, 2020. These meetings will be a hybrid of virtual and physical presence at City Hall. Following Planning Advisory Board review the amendments will receive consideration by City Commission in August and transmit the amendments to the appropriate Florida agencies for review. Once reviewed and any comments are addressed, the City can adopt the amendments at 2nd Reading anticipated for September 2020.
In an effort to protect the health and safety of residents and guests, County Manager, Mike Mullin, has issued Executive Order 15 prohibiting professional fireworks in Nassau County. This is being done to reduce the spread of COVID-19 as firework displays increase and encourage public gatherings. This does not apply to the use of personal fireworks.
See the official Executive Order below. For more information, visit www.NassauCountyFL.com.
The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) today suspended the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption at all bars throughout the state. The suspension of alcohol sales directed by DBPR Emergency Order 2020-09 is effective immediately.
DBPR Secretary Halsey Beshears said, “Based on recent increases in COVID-19 cases and non-compliance with previous orders, DBPR has taken action to suspend on-premises alcohol sales at bars. DBPR believes this is a necessary step to take to protect public health as we continue working in partnership with industry and health officials to combat COVID-19.”
As filed on June 26, 2020, DBPR Emergency Order 2020-09 suspends the sale of alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises for all vendors licensed for such sale who derive more than 50 percent of gross revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages. Notwithstanding this suspension of sales for on-premises consumption, these vendors may continue to sell alcoholic beverages in sealed containers for consumption off the premises in accordance with Executive Order 20-71, Sections 1 and 2. Licensed restaurants also may continue to operate for on-premises consumption of food and beverages at tables pursuant to the restrictions in Executive Order 20-139, so long as these vendors derive 50 percent or less of gross revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption.
Click HERE to view DBPR Emergency Order 2020-09 or see below. For more information, please visit www.myfloridalicense.com/emergency.
City of Fernandina Beach Officials and Staff Support Enhanced Public Education Efforts to Reduce the Spread of COVID-19 in Community
1. City officials and staff support the enhanced public education efforts promoted by the Nassau County Board of County Commissioners and the Nassau County Chamber of Commerce to reduce the spread of Covid-19 in our community.
2. Workers in and visitors to local businesses (to include private, public, and non-profit facilities) are strongly encouraged to wear masks and appropriately distance from others, especially when indoors. Other Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations should also be rigorously followed: wash hands, use hand sanitizer, and avoid large groups.
3. City staff will provide support as needed to assist with the education and enforcement effort within the city limits.
4. I encourage everyone to monitor their own health and adhere to the CDC guidelines to avoid the re-implementation of stricter public health measures.
5. Thank you for your cooperation.
Due to the recent increases to COVID-19 cases, Nassau County is strongly encouraging use of masks in public places. Effective Friday, June 26, 2020, we are requesting that ALL businesses implement measures to protect the health and safety of the public. This includes use of masks by both employees and patrons, ensuring social distancing of customers, and maintaining an occupancy of 50% or less.
The County is coordinating this voluntary implementation with Nassau County Emergency Management, the City of Fernandina Beach and the Chamber of Commerce.
Between tomorrow and next Wednesday, July 1st, Nassau County Code Enforcement will begin visiting businesses to see if these recommendations are being followed. Should it be determined that businesses are not voluntarily implementing these measures, the County will consider issuing an Executive Order making these safety measures mandatory and subjecting business owners to a citation.
The Chamber of Commerce and Nassau County Emergency Management are working on a system to distribute masks to businesses needing assistance in supplying them to employees and patrons. Additional information on this will follow.
~Advises wearing masks in public, encourages elderly and vulnerable populations to limit interactions outside of the home, and urges all individuals to refrain from participating in gatherings of more than 50 people~
The Florida Department of Health (Department) issued an additional Public Health Advisory in response to COVID-19, providing recommendations to protect Floridians and visitors from this virus. This advisory is in addition to steps that the Department has taken to increase mitigation measures, including the purchase of 20 million cloth masks, which are actively being distributed statewide. Today, Governor DeSantis also directed the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation to increase inspections to ensure that businesses are adhering to applicable Phase 1 and Phase 2 guidance.
The Public Health Advisory provides the following recommendations:
This is a reinforcement of the previously issued advisory as well as direction that has been provided in the task force report for a Safe. Smart. Step-by-Step. Plan for Florida’s Recovery.
Currently, 64 counties are in Phase 2, which dictates:
Restaurants, bars and other vendors licensed to sell alcoholic beverages, excluding nightclubs:
Phase 2 continued emphasis on preventative measures outlined by the CDC and OSHA:
The three counties with the highest number of cases (Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties) are still in Phase 1, which dictates:
Restaurants and food establishments:
About the Florida Department of Health
The Florida Department of Health, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.
Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @HealthyFla. For more information please visit www.FloridaHealth.gov.
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