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The South Florida Roundup

Beaches And Hotels Reopen Across South Florida. What You Need To Know.

Miami Herald
Arleen Townsend walks along Fort Lauderdale Beach as the beaches in Broward County open for the first time this week since the coronavirus shutdowns.

Updated Sunday, May 31: Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez announced Sunday that beaches in Miami-Dade County will remain closed while there is a curfew, following protests against police brutality that were succeeded by looting and vandalism on Saturday night.

The county's curfew runs from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. In the city of Miami, the curfew starts at 8 p.m.

South Florida beaches and hotels are reopening under new coronavirus guidelines.

The latest round of reopening involves Miami-Dade, where beaches and hotels reopen Monday. The Florida Keys will also welcome back visitors on the same day.

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Read More: Here's A List of Reopening Restrictions In Broward County

Masks are among the restrictions. People must wear them in most cases. Exemptions include strenuous activity, such as jogging and swimming.

People also have to be mindful of social distancing. Hotels on Miami Beach are limiting capacity in common areas to 50 percent, for example.

On the South Florida Roundup, host Tom Hudson talked about enforcement with Miami Beach City Manager Jimmy Morales and Fort Lauderdale City Manager Chris Lagerbloom.

Here’s an excerpt of their conversation:

JIMMY MORALES: Our police will be out there really to respond to the difficult situations when folks are blatantly violating rules or worse. We're going to have them out there patrolling. What we're going to have really is a combination of city employees, either on duty or off duty, from other departments. Some are parks employees. We're going to have the county lending us about 70 people daily. We're going to hire some additional unarmed guards that will be training to be out there. Our hope is we're going to have about 140 non-law enforcement folks daily out there and then backed up probably by 25 to 30 police officers to respond to problem areas.

We know historically what our hotspots are on our beaches. The areas where we attract really large crowds. We'll be able to target some of those. Although, we're expecting them the first couple of weeks with nobody

We expect there'll be a few folks, though, who do want to test the rules. - Jimmy Morales, Miami Beach city manager

being able go to the beach for a couple of months, probably from day one, we'll have a lot of the beach impacted.

TOM HUDSON: What about those instances when encouragement just simply isn't enough and enforcement has to happen? What's the guidance that's being given?

CHRIS LAGERBLOOM: If we end up having to be put in that position, we certainly can remove somebody from the beach. We could issue a citation. It would be enforceable in that manner. Just a plea to the public that this is a real opportunity to come back to what South Florida is known for, the sun and the sand and everything that goes along with it. And let's all do the right thing so we can keep it open.

MORALES: We can issue a citation. We can issue a notice to appear. We can remove them from the beach. And if a segment of the beach gets out of control, because there are some really loud, large crowds, we can even choose to close off a block or so of the beach, it becomes very problematic. We really are hoping that, you know, with, you know, some nice, polite encouragement, folks will do the right thing. We expect there'll be a few folks, though, who do want to test the rules. We had that when the beach was closed and we made a few arrests during that time. So we expect that to happen, as well.

The transcript of this interview has been lightly edited for brevity and clarity.

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Alexander Gonzalez produces the afternoon newscasts airing during All Things Considered. He enjoys helping tell the South Florida story through audio and digital platforms. Alex is interested in a little of everything from business to culture to politics.