Florida Reopens Economic Climate As States Keep On To Carry COVID-19 Lockdowns

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Florida has now officially reopened with most coronavirus restrictions being lifted as of today as about half of all US states partially reopen their economies after the lockdown. 

As part of the reopening in Florida, which has seen 1,300 deaths and 36,000 infections among its 21.5 million residents, retailers and restaurants across much of the state can open their doors at a 25 percent capacity. 

While some beaches across parts of the state were allowed to reopen last month, Clearwater Beach in Tampa officially reopened to the public before sunrise on Monday morning. 

Police removed 'closed' signs from barricades at 7am to the cheers of the 50 or so people waiting to step on the freshly groomed sand. Clearwater police have a large presence patrolling the beach and are urging people to socially distance.

Cafes along the beach also reopened with eateries allowed to resume dine-in services if they have outdoor seating and can ensure appropriate social distancing. 






Cones are set up to help beachgoers keep a safe distance from one another after Clearwater Beach in Florida after the beach officially reopened on Monday amid the coronavirus pandmeic







Cafes along the beach also reopened with eateries allowed to resume dine-in services if they have outdoor seating and can ensure appropriate social distancing







While some beaches across parts of the state were allowed to reopen last month, Clearwater Beach officially reopened to the public before sunrise Monday morning























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Medical practices can also resume elective surgeries and procedures as part of the state's phased reopening.   

Movie theaters, bars and fitness clubs will remain closed for now.  

Governor Rick DeSantis has left existing restrictions in place across Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties - the three most highly populated in the state.

DeSantis had drawn criticism for waiting until April 2 to clamp down on commerce - after most other states had already done so - in part because of Florida's high proportion of elderly residents - more than a fifth are age 65 and over - who are especially vulnerable to the virus.

But Florida, a key swing electoral swing state, appears to have avoided the worst of the health crisis seen in other states such as New York and New Jersey.  

The highest daily number of infections occurred on April 17 with just over 1,400 new cases. New daily infections have been considerably lower since then and only increased above 1,000 on April 23 and May 1. The highest daily deaths occurred on April 28 with 83 deaths and fatalities appear to be on the decline since then. 

The state does not appear to have met all the White House's guidelines for reopening, which include 14 days of declining cases and contact tracers to track infections.  

The number of US cases has now topped 1.1 million and the death toll has increased to more than 68,500. 








Some beachgoers marked out the six feet surrounding them with seaweed to enforce social distancing. Photo courtesy of WFLA







Clearwater Police were at the beach to encourage and inform the public about social distancing rules which still apply despite restrictions being lifted







Families crowded the beach on Monday after it reopened following more than a month of being closed







Clearwater police have a large presence patrolling the beach and are urging people to socially distance







Police removed 'closed' signs from barricades at 7am to the cheers of the 50 or so people waiting to step on the freshly groomed sand







Beachgoers set up their chairs first thing Monday after the beach reopened to the public







Beachgoers walk on Clearwater Beach after it was officially reopened to the public on Monday morning







As part of the reopening in Florida, which has seen 1,300 deaths and 36,000 infections among its 21.5 million residents, retailers and restaurants across much of the state can open their doors from today at a 25 percent capacity







Crowds lined the shore at Clearwater Beach in Florida on the first day it reopened followng the lockdown







Clearwater police officers Lt. Nate Burnside, left, and Cpl. Jarred Stiff put out beach rules signs on Clearwater Beach before it officially reopened to the public















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States, mostly in the South, the Midwest and mountain West, have moved to relax restrictions since Georgia led the way last month.

Georgia took another step toward a full restart by allowing all businesses to reopen from Friday. Large crowds of people were seen in Atlanta on Sunday as shelter-in-place orders expired and businesses reopened.

Health experts are now concerned that warmer weather could prove to be challenging to manage coronavirus as restaurants, hair salons and other businesses reopen across the country. 

On Saturday, thousands of people gathered on the National Mall in Washington to view a US Navy flyover to honor healthcare workers and others battling the pandemic. 

In New York City, the warmest weather yet this spring caused picnickers and sunbathers to flock to green spaces in Manhattan, including crowded conditions at the Christopher Street Pier in Greenwich Village.

Last week, California ordered beaches in Orange County to close, after crowds defied public health guidelines to throng the popular shoreline. Police in the county's Huntington Beach said people were complying on Sunday. 

Dr Deborah Birx, coordinator for the White House coronavirus task force, said on Fox News Sunday that massing on beaches was not safe unless people kept at least six feet apart. 






Floridians headed out fishing on Monday in Everglades National Park after it reopened







A boat heads out from the Flamingo boat ramp in Everglades National Park on Monday after it reopened following the lockdown







Georgia took another step toward a full restart by allowing all businesses to reopen from Friday. Large crowds were spotted in Atlanta on Sunday after restrictions were lifted







Large crowds of people were seen in Atlanta on Sunday as Georgia Governor Brian Kemp allowed shelter-in-place orders to expire


She also weighed in against allowing such businesses as beauty salons and spas to reopen in the first phase. 

'We've made it clear that that is not a good phase one activity,' she said.

She said that rrotesters gathering, as they did last week in Michigan and other parts of the country to demonstrate against stay-at-home restrictions, posed a huge risk.

'It's devastatingly worrisome to me personally if they go home and infect their grandmother or their grandfather who has a comorbid condition and they have a serious or a very - or an unfortunate outcome, they will feel guilty for the rest of our lives,' Birx said.  

Scott Gottlieb, a former FDA commissioner, said on Sunday the country was seeing a 'mixed bag' of results from coronavirus mitigation efforts. 

He said there were about 20 states seeing a rising number of new cases including Illinois, Texas, Maryland, Indiana, Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee. Virginia reported a record number of deaths on Sunday.

'We expected that we would start seeing more significant declines in new cases and deaths around the nation at this point. And we're just not seeing that,' he said on CBS' Face the Nation. 

'If we don't snuff this out more and you have this slow burn of infection, it can ignite at any time.' 






















































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Here's where each state is with current lockdown measures:  

Alabama

Cases: 7,899 - Deaths: 292 

Alabama's employers and retail stores are allowed to reopen from April 30 at a reduced 50 percent capacity. 

Beaches will reopen but residents have to adhere to social distancing, including not gathering in groups of 10 or more. 

High risk business including theaters, night clubs, fitness centers, barber shops, hair and nail salons will remain closed. 

Bars and restaurants can only have takeaway or curbside pickup.   

The updated order expires May 15.  

Alaska 

Cases: 368 - Deaths: 9 

Reopening of restaurants, stores, hair and nail salons and other businesses started April 24.

Under the new rules in some Alaska territories, restaurants will reopen but are limited to 25 percent capacity and there must be 10 feet between tables and only family members can be seated at the same table.

Salons in Alaska may only accept customers by appointment.

Alaska's largest city, Anchorage, where some 40 percent of residents live, delayed easing restrictions until April 27. 

Arkansas 

Cases: 3,437 - Deaths: 76 

There is no state-wide stay-at-home order.

Restaurants will open for limited dine-in services from May 1 but can only operate at a third of its normal capacity. 

Gyms and indoor recreational facilities can resume operates from April 30. Restrictions will lift on hair salons and barber shops on May 1. 

State parks will reopen from May 1.

Colorado 

Cases 16,635 - Deaths 842 

Elective surgeries and retail curbside delivery began April 27. Hair salons, dental offices and tattoo shops can also reopen that date with restrictions. 

Other retail will be allowed to reopen from May 4 with social distancing restrictions. Large workplaces can reopen on May 4 at 50% capacity.   

Restaurants and bars are still limited to takeout only.

The state's stay-at-home order expired April 26 but residents are still urged to stay home where possible.

Florida 

Cases: 36,897 - Deaths: 1,399 

The state will reopen some business on May 4 except for in Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties. 

Restaurants can offer outdoor seating six-feet between tables and indoor seating at 25% capacity.

Retail can operate at 25% capacity.

Bars, gyms, movie theaters and personal services - like hair salons - are to remain closed.

Some beaches and parks reopened from April 17 if it could be done safely. 

Georgia

Cases: 29,123 - Deaths: 1,210 

Gyms, hair salons, bowling alleys and tattoo parlors can reopen from April 24 as long as owners follow strict social-distancing and hygiene requirements. 

Elective medical procedures can also resume. Movie theaters may resume selling tickets and restaurants limited to takeout orders can return to limited dine-in service from April 27.

At-risk people are urged to remain home until May 13.  

Bars, live performance venues and amusement parks will remain closed. Religious institutions are still urged to hold drive-thru or online services for now.  

Idaho 

Cases: 2,061 - Deaths: 64 

Some business are allowed to offer curbside pick up, drive in and drive thru services. 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only. 

Illinois

Cases: 61488 - Deaths: 2618 

From May 1, nonessential retailers can reopen for delivery or offer online orders that can be picked up outside stores.

Face masks are required outdoors. 

Iowa 

Cases: 9,739 - Deaths: 187 

There is no stay-at-home order. 

From May 1, restaurants can open at 50 percent capacity but no more than six people at one table.

Malls, fitness centers, libraries and retail stores can open at 50 percent capacity.

Horse and dog racing tracks can reopen with no spectators.

All other businesses remain closed through May 15.  

Kentucky

Cases: 5,130 - Deaths: 253 

No stay-at-home order but anyone going out in public will have to wear a mask from May 11. 

Dentists, chiropractors, optometrists allowed to start taking non-urgent patients from April 27. Prior to that, those services were only allowed to take urgent appointments.

Outpatient/ambulatory surgery and invasive procedures can begin May 7. Elective and non-urgent procedures can resume at 50 percent capacity from May 13. 

Manufacturing, construction, car dealerships and professional services can start May 11 at 50% capacity.

Retail and houses of worship can begin May 20. Barber shops and salons can reopen from May 25.

Restaurants and bars can likely reopen for dining in June.  

Louisiana 

Cases: 29,340 - Deaths: 2,012 

Bars and restaurants are limited to take-out only but from May 1 they will be allowed to let customers eat in outdoor areas as long as there's no table service.

Malls can also start operating curbside retail from May 1. 

Stay-at-home order has been extended until May 15. 

There's a 10 person limit on gatherings. 

Maine 

Cases: 1,185 - Deaths: 57 

Businesses including drive-in theaters, barber shops and hair salons, dog groomers and car dealerships can reopen from May 1. 

Some outdoor recreation like golf courses, marinas and state-owned public land trails will also be allowed to reopen. 

Current restrictions, including no gatherings of more than 10 people and 14 day quarantine for out of state visitors, still apply. 

If employees are able to work from home, they should continue to do so.  

Restaurants and bars are still limited to take-out only. 

Michigan 

Cases: 43,801 - Deaths: 4,053 

Stay-at-home order extended until May 15. Public gatherings prohibited - with religious exemptions.

Garden stores, nurseries, lawn-care, pest-control and landscaping operations were allowed to resume business from April 24. 

The construction industry can return to work on May 7. 

Nonessential businesses are still limited to minimum operations or remote work. Retailers that do not sell necessary supplies can reopen for curbside pickup and delivery. 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only. 

Minnesota  

Cases: 6,663 - Deaths: 418 

In Minnesota, only businesses that don't interact with the public can reopen from April 27. 

It includes those in industrial, manufacturing and office settings. Retail stores must remain closed. 

The state's stay-at-home order still runs through to at least May 3.

Entertainment and performance venues remain closed and bars and restaurants are limited to take-out only. 

Mississippi 

Cases: 7,550 - Deaths: 303 

In Mississippi, retail stores, including those in strip malls and shopping centers, are now allowed to reopen on April 27 if they reduce their customer capacity by 50 percent at any given time.

Businesses that can't avoid person-to-person contact, including gyms, cinemas and salons, are to remain closed. 

Elective medical and dental procedures are now allowed.  

The state's stay at home order has been extended until at least May 11. 

Missouri  

Cases: 8,706 - Deaths: 382 

From May 4, all businesses will be allowed to reopen and social events can resume as long as residents and business owners continue social distancing and limit capacity.

Local governments can impose stricter limitations if their officials believe it is necessary.

Kansas City's stay-at-home order is scheduled to continue through May 15. 

Montana 

Cases: 455 - Deaths: 16 

Churches resumed services on April 27. 

Starting May 4, restaurants and bars can start providing some dine-in services. 

Schools have the option to return to in-classroom instruction May 7.   

Visitors from out of state still must self-quarantine for 14 day. 

Nebraska  

Cases: 5,891 - Deaths: 78 

No stay-at-home order. 

From May 4, people can dine-in at restaurants but they must remain six feet apart and everyone must wear masks. 

Bars are still limited to take-out only.  

Hair salons, tattoo parlors and strip clubs closed through May 31.

There's a 10 person limit on gatherings. 


New Hampshire  
Cases: 2,518 - Deaths: 86 

Stay-at-home order extended until May 31. 

Drive-in theaters, golf courses and hair salons will be allowed to start up again from May 11 with strict social distancing.

Restaurants that have outdoor seating can reopen from May 18 if tables can be spaced six feet apart. 

Campgrounds, manufacturing services and state parks can open immediately if they follow the guidelines.  

North Dakota 

Cases: 1,191 - Deaths: 25 

No stay-at-home order.

Bars and restaurants, recreational facilities, health clubs and athletic facilities, salons, and tattoo studios can reopen from May 1 with social distancing measures. 

Movie theaters must limit admittance to 20% capacity. 

Ohio  

Cases: 19,914 - Deaths: 1,039 

Non-essential surgeries that don't require an overnight hospital stay will start May 1.

Manufacturing, distribution and construction sectors will reopen May 4, following by consumer retail and services on May 12.

Companies will need to require employees and customers to wear face masks and follow social distancing guidelines. 

Oklahoma 

Cases: 3,972 -  Deaths: 238 

Some businesses that were closed in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus were allowed to reopen from April 24 and others can reopen within 10 days. 

Barbershops, hair and nail salons, pet groomers and spas were allowed to reopen from April 24. The move is contingent on businesses practicing social distancing, and employees and customers must wear masks if they are within six feet of each other. 

Restaurants, movie theaters, gyms and places of worship can reopen May 1. Nurseries tied to places of worship will remain closed. 

South Carolina  

Cases: 6,626 - Deaths: 275 

Department stores, sporting goods stores and flea markets are among the businesses allowed to reopen in parts of the state from April 20. 

Other stores selling furniture, books, music, flowers, clothing and accessories can also reopen. The businesses are allowed to open at 20 percent capacity, or five people per 1,000 square feet.  

Beaches are also allowed to reopen April 21.

South Dakota  

Cases: 2,631 - Deaths: 21 

No stay-at-home order

Unnecessary gatherings of 10 or more prohibited  

Tennessee

Cases: 13,177 - Deaths: 210 

Businesses in most counties can reopen as early as April 27. 

Retail stores, which can reopen from April 29, and restaurants will operate with a 50 percent customer capacity. Many of Tennessee's 56 parks will open on Friday. 

Businesses can expect temperature checks, enforced mask wearing and social distancing.  

Large cities including Nashville, Memphis and Knoxville can decide on their own when to reopen.

Texas 

Cases 31,998 - Deaths 878 

Retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters and malls can reopen at a 25 percent reduced capacity from May 1. 

State parks reopened on April 20 but people must wear face coverings and masks and adhere to social distancing. People also cannot visit in groups of five or more.

Hospitals could resumed surgeries on April 22 that had been postponed by coronavirus.  

Schools and universities will remain closed for the rest of the year.  

Utah 

Cases: 5,175 - Deaths: 50 

No stay-at-home order. 

Restaurants can allow customers dine in again with precautions from May 1.

Gyms and personal services including hair salons can reopen May 1. 

Vermont 

Cases: 902 - Deaths: 53 

Stay-at-home order through May 15.

Construction, home appraisers, property management and municipal clerks can reopen from April 27 with a maximum of five workers.

Farmers markets can operate from May 1. 

Outdoor retail space can allow in-person shopping with a max of 10 people. 

West Virginia 

Cases: 1,195 - Deaths: 48

Elective surgeries can resume from April 30.

Small businesses with less than 10 employees can reopen next week, including hair and nail slaons, barber shops and pet grooming. 

There is an indefinite stay-at-home order. 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only. 

Wisconsin

Cases: 7,964 - Deaths: 339 

The stay-at-home order has been extended to May 26. 

Nonessential businesses and public libraries can have curbside pickup and delivery.

Groomers, engine repair shops are allowed to do curbside drops offs.

Golf courses are open.

Some state parks will reopen from May 1.


Not reopening
California 

Cases: 54,972 - Deaths: 2,217 

There is an indefinite stay-at-home order and gatherings in a single room or place are prohibited.

Nonessential businesses are limited to minimum operations or remote work, while restaurants and bars are limited to take-out only.

Essential surgeries are now being allowed in California. 

Six counties in the Bay Area, including San Francisco, have extended its shelter-in-place order until mid-May but will allow construction to restart.  

Connecticut  

Cases: 29,287 - Deaths: 2,436 

Stay-at-home order through May 20. 

Five person limit on social gatherings, 50-person limit for religious services. 

Non-essential businesses must suspend all in-person operations and bars and restaurants are limited to take-out only.

Out-of-state visitors strongly urged to self-quarantine. 

If the state meets certain criteria by May 20, including 14 days of downward infections, increased testing availability and sufficient contact tracing methods, it will forge ahead with partial reopening.  

If that criteria is met, restaurants with outdoor seating, offices, hair and nail salons and outdoor museums and zoos will be allowed to reopen.  

Delaware 

Cases: 5,208 - Deaths: 177 

Stay-at-home order through May 15. 

10 person limit on gatherings.

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work.

Visitors from out of state who aren't just passing through must self-quarantine for 14 days. 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only.

Hawaii 

Cases: 620 - Deaths: 17

Stay-at-home order has been extended until May 31. 

10 person limit on gatherings

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work

Visitors from out of state must self-quarantine for 14 days 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only

Kansas 

Cases: 5,195 - Deaths: 147 

Stay-at-home order until May 3 

10 person limit on gatherings - exempting funerals and religious services with social distancing

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work

Residents who traveled to California, Florida, New York or Washington state after March 14, or visited Illinois or New Jersey after March 22, must self-quarantine for 14 days 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only. 


Maryland  
Cases: 26,408 - Deaths: 1,352 

Indefinite stay-at-home order 

10 person limit on gatherings

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work

Visitors from out of state must self-quarantine for 14 days 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 

Massachusetts 

Cases: 68087 - Deaths: 4004 

Non-essential businesses closed through May 4 

10 person limit on gatherings 

Visitors from out of state advised to self-quarantine for 14 days 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


New Jersey   
Cases: 126,744 - Deaths: 7871

Indefinite stay-at-home order

10 person limit on gatherings

Nonessential retail businesses must close bricks-and-mortar premises. Recreational and entertainment businesses also closed  

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


New Mexico   
Cases: 3,850 - Deaths: 151 

Stay-at-home order through April 30 

Five person limit on gatherings in a single room

Nonessential businesses must suspend all in-person operations 

Arriving air travelers must self-quarantine for 14 days 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


New York

Cases: 316,415 - Deaths: 19,415 
Stay-at-home order through May 15.

Nonessential gatherings are prohibited.   

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work. 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only.

Masks must be worn in situations where social distancing is not possible.

Elective surgeries can begin in parts of the state.  


North Carolina  
Cases 11,971 - Deaths 442 

Stay-at-home order through May 8

10 person limit on gatherings

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work 

 Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


Oregon  
Cases: 2,680 - Deaths: 109 

Indefinite stay-at-home order

25 person limit on gatherings

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only  


Pennsylvania  
Cases: 51,225 - Deaths: 2,720

Stay-at-home order through April 30

Gatherings prohibited 

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


Rhode Island   
Cases: 9,652 - Deaths: 341 

Stay-at-home order through May 8 

Five person limit on gatherings

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work

Visitors from out of state must self-quarantine for 14 days 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


Virginia   
Cases 19,493 - Deaths 684 

Stay-at-home order through June 10

Recreation and entertainment businesses closed through May 8 

10 person limit on gatherings 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only 


Washington  
Cases 15,768 - Deaths 834 

Stay-at-home order through May 4

All gatherings for social, spiritual and recreational purposes are prohibited 

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work 

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only


Not yet determined 

Arizona  
Cases 8,640 - Deaths 362 

Hospitals that have sufficient PPE, capacity and ability to test healthcare workers can open for elective surgeries on May 1. 

State's stay-at-home order currently runs until April 30. 

10 person limit on gatherings

Nonessential businesses are limited to minimum operations or remote work

Restaurants and bars limited to take-out only  


Indiana   
Cases: 20,394 - Deaths: 1,132

Stay-at-home order runs through May 1. 

There's a 10 person limit on gatherings.

Nonessential businesses limited to minimum operations or remote work and bars and restaurants limited to take-out only.

Hospitals, veterinarians, dentists and other health care providers were allowed to resume operations from April 27 if they had the appropriate PPE.  


Nevada  
Cases: 5,472 - Deaths: 259 

Stay-at-home order through April 30.

10 person limit on gatherings

Recreational, entertainment and personal-care businesses closed, including casinos  

Bars and restaurants limited to take-out only.