Alachua County Stay-At-Home Order & the State of Florida’s Safer-At-Home Order!
Updated: Wednesday, May 5th, 2020
Alachua County's Stay-At-Home order was superseded by Emergency Order 2020-21 on May 5th, 2020.
The Governor's Safer-At-Home order was supersed by Executive Order 20-112 (Reopen Florida Phase 1) on May 4th, 2020.
- Please click here for a copy of Alachua County Stay-At-Home Order No. 2020-09
- Please click here for a copy of the State of Florida’s Safer-At-Home Order 20-91
The North Central Florida Apartment Association is providing the following resource to help our members navigate the “stay-at-home” order issued by the Alachua County government in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This resource may change as more information is made available, and should not be considered comprehensive. It is still important for your company to stay up to date with any new announcements or press releases made available to the public by your local government.
Please note it is your community or company's responsibility to make operational, policy, or staffing decisions based on a thorough internal review and consultation with counsel. Nothing contained within this article should be considered legal advice or official guidance.
On March 23rd, 2020 Alachua County Chair Robert Hutchinson issued a Stay-At-Home order for all non-essential employees in incorporated and unincorporated Alachua County. The order became effective on Tuesday, March 24 at 12:01 AM and will last until the expiration of the existing State of Local Emergency, unless terminated by a subsequent Emergency Order.
Under this order, non-essential businesses are required to stop operations and close.
On March 25th, Alachua County Chair Robert Hutchinson signed Amendment No.1 to Emergency Order No. 2020-09. This amendment made changes to include more businesses deemed essential and to clarify operational concerns.
On April 1st, 2020 Governor Ron DeSantis issued executive order 20-91, which declared a state-wide stafer-at-home mandate. This directive orders all persons in Florida to limit their movements and personal interactions outside of their home to only those necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities until April 30, 2020.This order includes a more comprehensive list of essential businesses and activities.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Why has this order been issued?
The purpose of this order is to restrict or stop the community spread of COVID-19 by limiting person to person interaction. Please access Alachua County’s COVID-19 Community Resource Portal for more information: Covid-19 Page
Q. Are multifamily property management and maintenance personnel considered “essential?”
- Yes. Executive order no. 2020-09 includes: Section 9. (List of Essential Businesses), Subsection (j) “Contractors and other tradesmen, building and apartment management and maintenance (including janitorial companies servicing commercial business), home security firms, fire and water damage restoration appliance repair personnel, exterminators, and other service providers who provide services that are n ecessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences and other structures.”
- Executive Order No 20-91 also encompasses the list detailed by the US Department of Homeland Security’s determination of an Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce.
Essential personnel includes:
- Workers responsible for the leasing of residential properties to provide individuals and families with ready access to available
- Workers responsible for handling property management, maintenance, and related service calls who can coordinate the response to emergency “at-home” situations requiring immediate attention, as well as facilitate the reception of deliveries, mail, and other necessary
- Workers performing housing construction related activities to ensure additional units can be made available to combat the nation’s existing housing supply shortage.
- Workers supporting the construction of housing, including those supporting government functions related to the building and development process, such as inspections, permitting and plan review services that can be modified to protect the public health, but fundamentally should continue and serve the construction of housing (e.g., allow qualified private third-party inspections in case of government shutdown).
Q. Is the employer mandated to stay open if they are deemed essential?
- No. This order only allows certain businesses to remain open. The decision for a business to remain open is a business decision that must be made in consultation with your company policies and legal
- It is important to note that Governor DeSantis’ executive order no. 20-91 confirms that individuals are allowed to and encouraged to work from home during the duration of the order.
Q. Do all employees have to appear for work if their business is deemed essential?
- It is up to the employer to determine whether or not the employee living in Alachua County should appear for work. Personnel and contractors should not report to work i f they are exhibiting any of the symptoms of COVID-19, if they have been in contact with someone who has been infected, or if they are sick.
Q. Are there requirements that essential personnel must follow?
- Yes, although they may continue working, the employees must maintain social distancing (at least 6 feet apart from other people), as well as all other measures advised by the CDC, and maintenance personnel should use appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).
Q. Do I need to halt construction on my residential property?
- It depends. Section (c.) states, “Residential and Commercial Related Construction, including repairs to existing structures and construction projects which are in progress are allowed to continue to completion. Permits for commencement of new construction will not be issued [or permitted]. In the case of a project that have multiple discrete elements, such as apartment complexes with multiple buildings, commencement of the next discrete element is not permitted, unless approved by the County Engineer or Growth Management Director…”
- The essential workers list in executive order no. 20-91 includes: “Workers supporting the construction of housing, including those supporting government functions related to the building and development process, such as inspections, permitting and plan review services that can be modified to protect the public health, but fundamentally should continue and serve the construction of housing (e.g., allow qualified private third-party inspections in case of government shutdown).”
- You may want to reach out to the County to confirm you can continue
Q. Is there a limit on how many employees can be essential personnel?
No, but gatherings of 10 or more people are discouraged and should practice social distancing and other measures advised by the
Q. If you are 65 or older and deemed “essential” do you have to go to work?
No, in fact the Governor orders those in that age group to stay home. However, they are allowed to work from home if their job Executive Order No 20-91 states, "Senior citizens and individuals with a significant underlying medical condition (such as chronic lung disease, moderate-to-severe asthma, serious heart conditions, immunocompromised status, cancer, diabetes, severe obesity, renal failure and liver disease) shall stay at home and take all measures to limit the risk of exposure to COVID-19."
Q. Are there unique requirements for essential business that are open to the public?
Alachua County’s emergency order also requires that any non-medical businesses shall observe occupancy restrictions of 1 customer per 1,000 covered square feet.
Q. My business is not included on the list of essential businesses and I can’t perform my work remotely, can I appeal for an exemption?
1). Yes, you can appeal for a non-essential business exemption that will be reviewed by the County Manager. To apply, please click here: Covid-19 Page
2). Essential services may be added under executive order 20-91 with the approval of the State Coordinating Officer in coordination with the State Health Officer.
Q. Does this apply to the cities within Alachua County?
Although, this does not stop municipalities within the County from imposing more stringent standards within their jurisdictions if they choose so.
Q. Does this mean Alachua County has declared a curfew?
No, not at this time.
Q. Can we leave our home for reasons other than our work (if work is deemed essential)?
Yes. However, people should remain in their homes unless they are engaging in activities essential to their health and safety, obtaining necessary services or supplies for themselves or family, engaging in outdoor activity (exercise), performing operations for work, or leaving to take care of a family member, friend, or Please refer to Section 4. Subsections (a), (b), (c ), (d), and (e) of the Alachua County stay-at-home order.
- Order 20-91 states residents may also engage in the following “essential activities:”
- Attend religious services,
- Participate in recreational activities such as hiking, walking, biking, ,
- Take care of pets, and
- Care for or otherwise assist a loved one or
Q. Can we deny an individual from entry onto our property?
Yes, but only if the individual has a high A business or property owner may take the temperature of any individual seeking to enter the property if the temperature is taken in a non-contact method. If the temperature is 100 Degrees Fahrenheit or higher, the individual may have their entry denied.
- NAA “Shelter-In-Place” Guidance: Guidance for NAA Members Concerning S helter-In-Place Orders
- FAA COVID-19 Resource Page: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance
- Alachua County Emergency Stay-At-Home Order No. 20-09: https://alachuacounty.us/Depts/Communications/Documents/ADACompliant/Amendment 1 toEmergencyOrder20-09.pdf
- The State of Florida’s Executive Order No. 20-91: STATE OF FLORIDA
- Alachua County COVID-19 Community Resource Portal: Home
- Alachua County Health Department’s Website: http://alachua.floridahealth.gov/
- Florida Department of Health’s Website: h ttp://www.floridahealth.gov/
- CDC’s Website: https://www.cdc.gov/