Florida Bars to Reopen Monday at 50% Capacity on Sept. 14

At the direction of Governor Ron DeSantis, Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation Secretary Halsey Beshears issued Emergency Order on Thursday that will reopen bars at 50% capacity beginning on September 14.

“Beginning Monday, these vendors may operate at 50 percent of the facility’s indoor capacity, allow bar service to seated patrons, and permit outdoor seating and service with appropriate social distancing,” the department said in a news release.

An executive order was issued to close bars in late June after COVID-19 outbreaks were reported at several drinking establishments in the state.

“In meetings with hundreds of owners of bars and breweries across the state, I’ve heard their stories of struggle, and I’ve observed their serious commitment to making health and safety a continuing priority in their businesses,” said Secretary Beshears.

“It’s time that we take this step, and it’s vital that we start moving forward with this sector of our hospitality industry who have endured one of the toughest paths for sustaining a business during this pandemic.”

The reopening has, however, excluded the South Florida counties once again.

On Tuesday, Palm Beach County had entered into phase 2 reopening, allowing venues like bowling alleys, arcades and movie theatres to operate. But county officials say it is not yet time for the county’s bars to reopen.

Similarly, in Miami-Dade, bars will remain closed. Mayor Carlos Gimenez tweeted that county “bars will remain closed by emergency order until further notice.”

As for Broward County, Mayor Dale Holness will soon give an update for its establishments, but it will likely follow those issued in Palm Beach and Miami-Dade.

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