FAA Releases COVID-19 Reopening Policies Tracker

Posted By: Robert Carroll (Member) Industry News ,

Disclaimer: This information is being provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. FAA members are encouraged to contact their legal counsel regarding any landlord/tenant law matters. The industry is in uncharted territory at this time and legal interpretations surrounding this topic may vary. 


In an effort to help FAA members navigate the patchwork of regulations that are being enacted by local governments across the state, FAA has created a Local Government COVID-19 Reopening Policies Tracker for members.
On Wednesday, April 29, Governor Ron DeSantis presented data regarding the status of the COVID-19 infection across the state as well as a framework for the first phase of Florida's reopening process. Governor DeSantis also issued Executive Order 20-112, which became effective on May 4 and provides specifics for phase one of Florida's reopening. A summary of these policy changes is provided below.
It is important to note however, that the governor’s executive order (20-112) does not contain a preemption on local rules that restrict or close businesses and buildings. Therefore, local governments may establish additional rules or regulations that could impact apartment community amenity spaces. 
This google spreadsheet will be updated as new local regulations are enacted. Please note that many local governments are in the early stages of evaluating reopening procedures, and FAA anticipates that more local-specific restrictions will be enacted by cities and counties in the coming days. Therefore, it is important for members to check this spreadsheet often and remain in close contact with their local FAA affiliate to stay up-to-date on local regulations. 
Because some local governments have instituted regulations regarding amenity spaces and social distancing, there is no one-size-fits-all approach for apartment community amenities across the state. However, recently the Florida Department of Health has issued statewide guidance for apartment pools, which you can find a link to below.  As you begin to evaluate when and how to reopen your amenity spaces, FAA encourages you to consult your legal counsel and risk management teams for guidance. 
 
Below are some other resources that may be helpful as you determine how to approach reopening your amenity spaces.
NOTE: The information linked below is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. 
If you have additional questions or concerns regarding COVID-19 restrictions, please contact Amanda@faahq.org or William@faahq.org

Florida's Reopening

Phase One Summary (Executive Order 20-112):

  • Became effective May 4, 2020 and will remain in place until the governor issues a subsequent executive order. Click here to access an FAQ regarding this executive order.
  • This order is in effect statewide, except in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties. In coordination with county mayors, stricter protocols apply in these three counties, without the reopen provisions of Executive Order 20-112.
  • Gyms and fitness centers closed by Executive Order 20-71 shall remain closed.
  • Vacation rentals prohibition remains in effect.
  • Senior citizens and individuals with significant underlying medical conditions are strongly encouraged to stay at home.
  • Individuals should avoid socializing in groups of more than 10 people in circumstances that do not allow for physical distancing.
    • FAA recommends that members consider this directive when evaluating the opening of amenities such as the apartment community pool. Members are also advised to check whether local restrictions related to recreational spaces are in place. Please refer to the Local Government COVID-19 Reopening Policies Tracker for information regarding regulations in your area. 
  • Individuals should avoid nonessential travel.
  • Face masks are recommended for face-to-face interactions and when individuals cannot practice physical distancing.
  • When in public, individuals should maximize distance between one another.
  • Restaurants and retail stores can operate at 25% capacity.
  • Elective surgeries will now be permitted.
  • Visits to senior living facilities are prohibited.
  • Schools will remain in session via distance learning.
  • Museums and libraries may open at no more than 25% of occupancy.
  • No changes were made to business operations previously deemed essential.
  • A violation of this order is a second-degree misdemeanor under s. 252.50 F.S. and punishable by imprisonment not to exceed 60 days, a fine not to exceed $500, or both.
The governor did not elaborate on the specifics of phase 2 or phase 3 of his reopening plan. However, the governor stressed that he plans to use CDC guidelines as a baseline and will carefully evaluate what makes sense for the state based on state and local COVID-19 data. The governor also indicated he hopes the state will move through different phases in weeks rather than months so this will be a quickly developing issue in the days ahead. You can rest assured that FAA will continue to monitor these developments and communicate timely updates to members on these important issues.