Being a newspaper reporter is almost impossible. The world is guess at what reality is.
On the same day that Florida reported 58 deaths from the coronavirus — its highest daily toll since the pandemic began — DeSantis told reporters that it’s essential that Floridians get exercise outdoors.
“I get a kick out of somebody jogging on the beach in California, like all by his lonesome, and you have a fleet of cops go out there,” he said. “He’s just jogging. Going forward, I think we’ve got to be promoting people to get exercise.”
While DeSantis never ordered statewide closures of beaches, his comment Friday gave the green light to local officials such as Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry (R), who announced that Duval County’s beaches would reopen Friday. Curry banned certain items, including towels and chairs, and limited hours to 6 to 11 a.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. to deter people from gathering for a long time.
As the coronavirus outbreak hit the U.S., many states changed laws and regulations related to alcohol. Now, however, those changes between states have created a confusing scene for consumers and retailers over the last few weeks, and experts say leaders need to work together to avoid bigger problems.
While 40 states with shelter-in-place orders have deemed liquor stores and other shops that sell alcohol essential businesses and allowed restaurants to deliver alcoholic drinks, some states, like Pennsylvania, have shut down their brick-and-mortar liquor stores during the pandemic. In some cases, the closures have resulted in shoppers seeking beer, wine and spirits to cross state lines — potentially putting themselves at health risk to stock their shelves.
“It’s almost like a trade war, but it’s driven by health care,” Michael D Belsky, the executive director of the Center for Municipal Finance at the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy, told ABC News.
Belsky and alcohol industry experts say the different regulations need to be sorted out soon to provide a balance of economic boost and safety. At the same time, experts say some of the new rules put in place could be a sneak peek of post-coronavirus regulations that would benefit the state, sellers and consumers.