Florida Mask Rules Changed (Again)

Cities and counties have put a variety of mandates in place. Here’s a county-by-county summary as of 10/9/2020.

Oct 9, 2020

Here’s Florida Politics’ roundup of regulations in the five largest counties the Sunshine State. For other counties, see the link at the bottom. 

COUNTIES

Broward County

The county issued an emergency order April 10 saying individuals must wear face coverings when visiting essential businesses, in cases where those businesses involve direct interaction between workers and the public, NBC 6 South Florida reports. The ordinance makes clear that while patrons are in businesses doing activities such as playing billiards, they may not be eating or drinking at the time as a way to avoid wearing a face covering.

Hillsborough County

An executive order, approved on June 22 by the Hillsborough County Emergency Policy Group, requires facial coverings for employees and patrons at all businesses dealing with the public and where social distancing cannot be maintained. The order was extended but also significantly changed on July 6, shifting penalties for noncompliance away from business license holders and onto individual members of the public, reports Fox 13. The order has since been extended and is ongoing.

Miami-Dade County

Mayor Carlos Giménez announced an expanded mask order on July 1 to apply to all public indoor and outdoor spaces throughout the county. Still the epicenter for COVID-19 cases in Florida, this extends an emergency order already requiring employees and visitors to wear face coverings at grocery stores, restaurants, pharmacies, construction sites, on public transit, in vehicles for hire, and at any business where social distancing is impossible. The local order discourages the use of N95 masks because they are still in critical supply there. The requirement does not apply to children age two and younger or those with chronic preexisting breathing problems.

Orange County

Mayor Jerry Demings signed an executive order requiring all people in public places to wear masks beginning June 20. If people are in restaurants and eating or drinking, they can take their masks off. But employees and people socializing should wear them, Demings said. People jogging or otherwise exercising away from other people also would be excluded. He encouraged businesses to prohibit entry to patrons who do not have masks.

Palm Beach County

County Commissioners voted unanimously to mandate masks in public, The Palm Beach Post reports. Even in Phase Three, commissioners say the requirement remains in place, as do fines. Requirements will mimic those in Miami-Dade County. The requirement is in place for ride-shares and at any business currently allowed to operate in the county. A judge upheld the legality of the mask in court on July 27, NBC 6 South Florida reports. The order has been extended until October 21.

For other Florida counties, read the full list here