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Re-Opening Task Force Launches Public Comment Portal, as DeSantis Provides Update on Progress

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The Re-Open Florida Task Force launched a public comment submission portal on Saturday.

The task force, which is due to give its recommendations to Gov. Ron DeSantis as the week begins, is seeking the public’s feedback regarding the safe re-opening of the state’s economy.

Floridians may submit feedback on any topic related to the re-opening, including the impacts to small business, healthcare, education, tourism, agriculture, retail, recreation and sports, and construction.

Access the public comment submission portal here.

Meanwhile, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Saturday said the state is on a slow road to recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, adding that social distancing measures will remain in place while he reopens the state in phases.

“If you look at that Phase One that the President has laid out, it’s not terribly different from what we’re doing now,” the governor said at a press conference in Weston.

However, he also discussed differences between his approach and the White House’s plan, which includes guidance on social distancing in restaurants, theaters and sports venues.

“We’re not doing in-person sports yet no matter what,” DeSantis said. “That’s just not going to happen in May. … Another thing in Phase One, they say movie theaters with social distance. I’m not there yet on the movie theaters. … It’s an enclosed environment. You’re much better off being outdoors.”

DeSantis spoke while visiting Cleveland Clinic Florida in Weston, saying that Florida has “flattened the curve.” He also cited a recent statewide decline in positive test rates and hospitalizations.

“What we’re seeing is the percentage of people that go in to test and test positive is declining,” he explained. “If you look at the last week, the average positive rate for new individuals was about 7.5%. So that’s a good sign that things are going in a good direction.”

DeSantis said Florida has more hospital beds available this week than when the coronavirus pandemic began in late February.