BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has issued an executive order requiring anyone entering the state by car to self-isolate, especially those entering from Louisiana.
Here’s the complete text of the order. As always, there’s a lot open to interpretation and even more open to the question of “how will this be enforced?”
WHEREAS, Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a severe acute respiratory illness that can spread among humans through respiratory transmission and presents with symptoms similar to those of influenza; and
WHEREAS, on March 1, 2020, I issued Executive Order number 20-51 directing the Florida Department of Health to issue a Public Health Emergency; and
WHEREAS, on March 1, 2020, the State Surgeon General and State Health Officer declared a Public Health Emergency exists in the State of Florida as a result of COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, on March 9, 2020, I issued Executive Order 20-52 declaring a state of emergency for the entire State of Florida as a result of COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, on March 24, 2020, I issued Executive Order number 20-82 directing all persons from an area with substantial community spread who enter the State of Florida to isolate or quarantine for a period of 14 days; and
WHEREAS, as Governor, I am responsible for meeting the dangers presented to this state and its people by this emergency.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, RON DESANTIS, as Governor of Florida, by virtue of the authority vested in me by Article IV, Section (1)(a) of the Florida Constitution, Chapter 252, Florida Statutes, and all other applicable laws, promulgate the following Executive Order to take immediate effect:
A. I hereby direct all persons who enter the State of Florida from an area with substantial community spread, to include the State of Louisiana, inclusive of those entering the State of Florida by roadways, to isolate or quarantine for a period of 14 days from the time of entry into the State of Florida or the duration of the person’s presence in the State of Florida, whichever is shorter. This section shall not apply to persons performing military, emergency, health or infrastructure response, or persons involved in any commercial activity. This Order shall take effect immediately and apply retroactively to all persons who have entered Florida after being in any area with substantial community spread. All persons isolating or quarantining under this Section shall be responsible for all costs associated with their isolation or quarantine, including transportation, lodging, food, medical care and any other expenses to sustain the person during the period of isolation or quarantine.
B. I hereby direct all persons covered under Section 1(A) of this Order to inform any individual in Florida with whom they have had direct physical contact in the past 21 days that they traveled from an area with substantial community spread.
C. I direct the establishment of appropriate checkpoints on the roadways for those persons and vehicles entering the State of Florida and to require those persons to provide information, including in a written form, regarding the origin of their travel and on the address of their location of isolation or quarantine for a period of 14 days. I further direct the Florida Department of Transportation to facilitate locations for appropriate checkpoints, including at welcome centers and rest stops, and to facilitate the placement of road signs and advisories to provide information on this Order and to direct traffic to the appropriate checkpoint.
D. Pursuant to sections 252.36(5)(b) and 252.47, Florida Statutes, the Florida Highway Patrol and County Sheriffs are directed to assist with the establishment of appropriate checkpoints, the flow of traffic to those checkpoints and any enforcement actions.
Section 2. Failure to follow Section 1 of this Order is a second-degree misdemeanor pursuant to section 252.50, Florida Statutes, and is punishable by imprisonment not to exceed 60 days, a fine not to exceed $500, or both.
A. Pursuant to section 252.47, Florida Statutes, I hereby direct all state, county and local law enforcement authorities to enforce this Order. Any law enforcement authority that interacts with a person in violation of Section 1(A) of this Order shall immediately report the individual, along with personal identifying and contact information, to the Florida Department of Health.
B. Pursuant to section 381.0012(5), Florida Statutes, “it shall be the duty of every state and county attorney, sheriff, police officer, and other appropriate city and county officials upon the request to assist the Department of Health” in enforcing any isolation or quarantine, state health law and order of the Department of Health issued pursuant to this Order.
Section 4. To the extent necessary, the exceptions of this Executive Order are applicable to Executive Order 20-80, Section 1(A) and 20-82, Section 1(A).
Section 5. This Executive Order shall expire upon the expiration of Executive Order
20-52, including any extensions, or upon an Executive Order lifting the isolation or quarantine after advice from the State Health Officer and Surgeon General.