Ban An Effort To Curb COVID. Some Homeowners Angered, Say Effort To Block Thanksgiving Visitors.
BY: ANDREW COLTON | Editor and Publisher
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Boca Raton’s high-end Polo Club — a residential country club — is taking the extraordinary measure of prohibiting family and friends from using facilities if they do not live in the community. The policy, just announced, is expected to continue at least through the Thanksgiving holiday.
While Polo Club is the first area community that we are aware of making such a move, it is most likely not the only one to institute strict rules. Other country clubs, HOA’s and communities are expected to also prohibit guest use of facilities as Florida COVID counts increase and visitors flock to South Florida for Thanksgiving and December holidays.
“I am sure this is to keep family from visiting who would visit when they cant use any of the facilities,” wrote one angry homeowner to BocaNewsNow.com. “As members we bought here for the facilities and services they offer.”
But another homeowner said the move makes sense.
“I fear that Thanksgiving is going to lead to death in Palm Beach County,” wrote a Polo Club homeowner. “If communities don’t follow our lead, there are going to be problems. Many Floridians seem to think they’re immune. They’re not. Grandkids and other family from the northeast and midwest visiting for Thanksgiving could literally kill people. We have to ‘say don’t visit this year’.”
Multiple homeowners forwarded the following letter to BocaNewsNow.com. It was sent to homeowners earlier this week:
As we’ve consistently reminded our Membership since March, the COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated an ongoing and continual evaluation of our virus containment policies. Such is the case again today, as management moves aggressively to confront a sharp rise in COVID infections across Florida and throughout the United States. With an expected increase in the number of Members and visitors coming to Polo in the weeks ahead, we find ourselves again with the need to curtail utilization of the Club by vertical family members as well as all outside guests.
Effective immediately, we are prohibiting any and all vertical family members from using all Club facilities until further notice. This includes any dining facility, the golf courses, or the tennis courts. This prohibition extends to the Clubhouse and common areas around the Club, such as the Family Resort Complex (including the pool and Barefoot Café) and the outdoor seating areas behind American Bistro and the Ladies Card Room.
We are taking this action because we believe it is the right thing to do at the present moment. These decisions are arrived at after careful consideration and consultation with the Club’s leaders and the Board of Governors. We have not been in the past—nor will we be in the future—swayed by vocal minorities or the “loudest voices” when making a determination as to what’s in the best health and safety interests of ALL the Members who are currently living at the Club.
We urge EVERYONE—no matter where you may be living at this point in time—to assume that everyone with whom you come in contact is currently carrying the virus, and protect yourselves accordingly. This includes an unfailing commitment to wear your masks at all times when at the Club, except when seated at a table in one of the dining areas, on lounge chairs at the pool, on a tennis court or in a golf cart. If you are unable or unwilling to wear a mask, you are asked to remain off Club property until future conditions suggest a safe return. It is not the sole responsibility of the staff or management to ensure compliance with these safety protocols—it is the responsibility of EVERYONE inside the gates: Members, guests, staff, and vendors and contractors alike.
If you or someone in your household contracts the virus, you are required to report it to our Security Office at 561-995-1333 or via email to COVID@poloclub.net. The Club continues to aggressively contact trace the individual’s interactions with other Members and will notify those who may have come in contact with the infected person. In addition to supporting these virus containment efforts, the Club is also offering to deliver food to affected households with no delivery charge.
As Members, their families, and guests begin to arrive at Polo in the days to come, we URGE everyone to self-quarantine for either 1) the full 14 day incubation period; or 2) five days, then followed by a negative nasal swab test result. There are a number of testing facilities in the area, including one in the parking lot across from The Container Store at the Town Center Mall which, according to a Google search, does not require an appointment or referral. The Club, however, does not endorse any specific facility and you should inquire with any testing facility before visiting their office.
We must move quickly and decisively to minimize this new wave of infections, which have impacted 8.7 million Americans and resulted in at least 215,000 deaths to date, with many more undoubtedly to follow. As a family-based community, we need to look out for one another and accept the shared responsibility to do our individual parts to keep Polo as safe as we possibly can in the days and weeks ahead.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.
Kate Berry, GM/COO
Joel H. Kaye, President, Board of Governors
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