County Commission wants to open more ‘low risk’ businesses blocked by governor’s order

The Alachua County commission is asking that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis give Florida counties more discretion in order to open more businesses.

A letter sent to DeSantis on May 6th asks that the governor “consider providing Florida’s counties with the authority to permit low risk businesses and activities within their communities the ability to resume when determined by the County that sufficient standards are in place to ensure the health, safety and welfare of the employees and the community.”

The BOCC specifically discussed local manufacturing companies that make products that are not on the essential list.

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“In the alternative, we would request that manufacturers, whose products were not deemed essential by the State, would be provided the ability to restart operations immediately,” the letter reads.

“Alachua County has one such major manufacturer that we believe could comply with all CDC and OSHA guidelines, as well as any industry specific standards for the operation of their facility.”

At a recent meeting, the Alachua County Commission voted unanimously that they wanted to be able to open these low-risk manufacturers.

The commission discussed that many manufacturing businesses have spacious open areas where employees work within safe distances from each other.

“We are appreciative of the careful thought and consideration you have placed in your decisions regarding the reopening of Florida,” the letter states.

“However, with so many different types of businesses and activities, we believe it is Florida’s counties who are uniquely qualified to evaluate those businesses and activities within their jurisdictions to determine which are low risk and can operate with sufficient safeguards in place.”

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