1/22/2021 1:50:07 PM
1/20/2021 10:25:41 AM
Agenda Item Number
Renewal of Face Covering Requirements
State Filed Date
Face Covering Requirements
Per Executive Order 20-51 due to COVID-19Renewal of Face Covering
Requirements from sunset to March 16, 2021
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ORDINANCE NO. 2021-004 <br />WHEREAS, the CDC, the Florida Department of Health and the University of <br />Florida recommend the use of face coverings, including those which are homemade to. <br />slow the spread of the disease; and <br />WHEREAS, in a recent United States Supreme Court Case, the Court denied <br />injunctive relief where California limited attendance at places of worship due to COVID- <br />19. Chief Justice Roberts described COVID-19 as "a novel severe acute respiratory <br />illness that has killed... more than 100,000 nationwide" and noted that "(a)t this time there <br />is no known cure, no effective treatment, and no vaccine" and "(b)ecause people may be <br />infected but asymptomatic, they may unwittingly infect others." Chief Justice Roberts also <br />stated the precise question of when restrictions on particular social activities should be <br />lifted during the pandemic is a dynamic and fact -intensive matter subject to reasonable <br />disagreement. Our Constitution principally entrusts '(t)he safety and the health of the <br />people' to the politically accountable officials of the States' to guard and protect' ... When <br />those officials'undertakeo to act in areas fraught with medical and scientific uncertainties, <br />'their latitude' must be especially broad.' ... Where those broad limits are not exceeded, <br />they should not be subject to second-guessing by 'an unelected federal judiciary,' which <br />lacks the background, competence, and expertise to assess public health and is not <br />accountable to the people." S. Bay United Pentecostal Church v. Newsom, 140 S. Ct. <br />1613; and <br />WHEREAS, Alachua County issued Emergency Order 2020-21 requiring face <br />masks in certain circumstances. The County's Emergency Order was challenged in State <br />Circuit Court and in Federal District Court. Both Courts issued Orders denying Plaintiffs' <br />Emergency Motions for Temporary Injunction. In denying the request for temporary <br />injunction, State Circuit Judge Donna M. Keim stated, "The protection of the safety and <br />welfare of the public is inherent in the role of local government ... The requirement to wear <br />a facial covering during the,limited circumstances set forth in the ordinance is a minimal <br />inconvenience; and, its benefits to the public in potentially reducing the spread of COVID- <br />19 outweighs any inconvenience." "Here, there is a global pandemic involving COVID- <br />19, a virus which the CDC and others advise is spread through airborne transmission and <br />is spread by asymptomatic individuals. Multiple sources relied upon by the County reflect <br />that mitigation is dependent upon the use of social distancing and personal protection <br />equipment, such as face masks/coverings. The County's need to take measures to control <br />the spread of COVID-19 clearly outweighs the Plaintiffs private interest in not wearing a <br />mask in the limited circumstances required by the county's emergency order; and an <br />injunction in this situation would disserve the public interest." Green v. Alachua County, <br />Case No.: 01- 2020- CA- 001249 (Order dated May 26, 2020). See also: Ham v. Alachua <br />County Board of County Commissioners et. al., Case No. 1: 20cv111- MW/ GRJ (Order <br />dated June 3, 2020 by Chief United States District Judge Mark E. Walker) ("Plaintiffs have <br />not demonstrated that Alachua County exceeded its broad limits and this Court, like the <br />Supreme Court, will not engage in secondguessing"); and <br />2 <br />F:\Attorney\Dylan\Face Covering Ordinance - Less Restrictive (Jan 2021).docx <br />
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