May 172020
 

Monroe County Sheriff’s Office Col. Lou Caputo directs a driver wanting to continue down the Florida Keys Overseas Highway near Key Largo, Fla. Friday, March 27, 2020. The Keys have been temporarily closed to visitors since March 22, because of the coronavirus crisis. Keys officials decided to established the checkpoint Friday to further lessen the threat of virus transmission to people in the subtropical island chain. (Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau/HO)

Monroe County plans to reopen to visitors Monday, June 1 by suspending the checkpoints on U.S. 1 and State Road 905 and allowing lodging establishments to take in guests at 50 percent occupancy. The Florida Keys have been closed to visitors since March 22 to minimize the spread of COVID-19.

Airport screenings and bus restrictions will also be lifted on June 1.

Monroe County lodging establishments, like hotels, campgrounds, vacation rentals, and other transient-licensed establishments will be required to implement sanitation procedures and follow the American Hotel and Lodging Association COVID-19 guidelines for enhanced cleaning practices (www.ahla.com).

The timeline for removing the 50 percent capacity restriction for lodging will be determined at a later date.

The County Administrator will submit a written request and safety plan to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation Secretary to seek approval for the operation of vacation rentals as required by the governor.

Kristen Livengood, the county’s spokesperson, said the re-opening “is subject to revision based on data regarding the prevalence of the virus within Monroe County, increased testing and contact tracing protocols, and the efforts in the adjacent counties to continue to control transmission of the virus.”

“Should the Florida Keys experience an increase in cases and under the advisement of the Florida Department of Health, restrictions may be heightened and/or amenities may again be closed,” said Monroe County spokesperson Kristen Livengood.

Monroe County residents are urged to continue to follow directives set by the State, County, and municipalities to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, including wearing masks in public settings, limiting group sizes to 10 or less, and physically distancing from others by six feet.

More information on COVID-19 efforts in Monroe County can be found at www.monroecountyem.com/covid19. Tourism-related information can be found at www.fla-keys.com.

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 May 17, 2020  Posted by at 8:00 am * Featured Story *  Add comments

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