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Ocala
Saturday, January 21, 2023

Bars and breweries reopening despite massive increase in COVID-19 cases

Gov. Ron DeSantis is allowing bars and breweries to open back up at 50 percent capacity on Monday despite the fact that Florida is showing a 1,030 percent increase in COVID-19 cases since he greenlighted Phase Two of his reopening plan less than three and a half months ago.

As of Sunday morning, 663,994 cases had been identified across the state. On June 3 when the governor first allowed bars and pubs to reopen at 50 percent capacity inside and full capacity outside, the state was reporting 58,764 cases – a difference of 605,230.

That original order allowing bars and pubs that don’t serve food to reopen was short-lived, as DeSantis ordered them closed again on June 26 when the state was reporting 122,960 cases. Since then, the governor and Halsey Beshears, secretary of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, have spent time meeting with bar and brewery owners to formulate the reopening plan that goes into effect Monday morning.

DeSantis on Sept. 3 held a roundtable discussion at the Green Bench Brewing Company in St. Petersburg about the future of bars and breweries across the state. He said a “huge portion” of job losses in Florida since the pandemic started in March have been in the hospitality industry. He also said he had told Beshears that he wanted every business in Florida up and running and it was essential to get to “yes” on the reopening of bars and breweries.

Beshears said he had listened to many stories of struggle among bar and brewery owners and seen firsthand their commitment to making health and safety a priority when reopening. He added that it’s “vital” to reopen that segment of Florida’s hospitality industry that has “endured one of the toughest paths for sustaining a business during this pandemic.”

Not surprisingly, the number of cases across Florida aren’t the only statistics that are much different today than when DeSantis first reopened Florida. On June 3, Florida was reporting 2,566 deaths and 10,525 people hospitalized. As of Sunday, those numbers had ballooned to 12,764 deaths and 41,297 people requiring some form of hospital care. That’s a 397 percent increase in deaths and a 292 percent increase in hospitalizations.

In the tri-county area on June 3, there were 39 deaths and 158 people hospitalized. Those numbers have now increased to 450 deaths and 1,600 hospitalized. Those mark a 1,054 percent increase in deaths and 913 percent increase in those needing hospital care.

On Sunday, statistics provided by the Florida Department of Health showed a breakdown of cases across the state:

  • 0-4 age group: (11,249, 2 percent);
  • 5-14 age group: (27,563 cases, 4 percent);
  • 15-24 age group: (101,316 cases, 15 percent);
  • 25-34 age group: (121,786 cases, 19 percent);
  • 35-44 age group: (106,407 cases, 16 percent);
  • 45-54 age group: (104,332 cases, 16 percent);
  • 55-64 age group: (85,598 cases, 13 percent);
  • 65-74 age group: (50,202 cases, 8 percent);
  • 75-84 age group: (29,062 cases, 4 percent); and
  • 85-plus age group: (17,064 cases, 3 percent).

The breakdown of hospitalizations across the state:

  • 0-4 age group: (259, 1 percent);
  • 5-14 age group: (235, 1 percent);
  • 15-24 age group: (1,054, 3 percent);
  • 25-34 age group: (2,330, 6 percent);
  • 35-44 age group: (3,526, 9 percent);
  • 45-54 age group: (5,247, 13 percent);
  • 55-64 age group: (7,277, 18 percent);
  • 65-74 age group: (8,111, 20 percent);
  • 75-84 age group: (7,633, 18 percent); and
  • 85-plus age group: (5,615, 14 percent).

The breakdown of deaths across the state:

  • 0-4 age group: (0);
  • 5-14 age group: (4);
  • 15-24 age group: (29);
  • 25-34 age group: (84);
  • 35-44 age group: (222);
  • 45-54 age group: (512);
  • 55-64 age group: (1,374);
  • 65-74 age group: (2,630);
  • 75-84 age group: (3,657); and
  • 85-plus age group: (4.095).

In Marion County, 9,146 cases were being reported Sunday. The vast majority of those – 7,165 – were in Ocala. Others were identified in Summerfield (355), Belleview (335), Dunnellon (302), Citra (173), Silver Springs (134), Ocklawaha (102), Reddick (71), Anthony (57), Weirsdale (52), Fort McCoy (40), Flemington (33), Orange Lake (11), Sparr (7), McIntosh (7), Candler (6), Lowell (5), The Villages (5), Salt Springs (6), Fairfield (3), East Lake (3), Morriston (3) and Orange Springs (2). A total of 1,416 cases have been reported among inmates (1,317) and staff members (99) at Lowell Correctional Institution and Marion Correctional Institution.

The breakdown by day of COVID-19 cases across the state, beginning the day after DeSantis’ Phase Two announcement, is as follows:

  • Thursday, June 4: 60,183, increase of 1,419;
  • Friday, June 5: 61,488, increase of 1,305;
  • Saturday, June 6: 62,758, increase of 1,270;
  • Sunday, June 7: 63,938, increase of 1,180;
  • Monday, June 8: 64,904, increase of 966;
  • Tuesday, June 9: 66,000, increase of 1,096;
  • Wednesday, June 10: 67,371, increase of 1,371;
  • Thursday, June 11: 69,069, increase of 1,698;
  • Friday June 12: 70,971, increase of 1,902;
  • Saturday June 13: 73,552, increase of 2,581;
  • Sunday June 14: 75,568, increase of 2,016;
  • Monday June 15: 77,327, increase of 1,759;
  • Tuesday June 16: 80,109, increase of 2,782;
  • Wednesday June 17: 82,719, increase of 2,610;
  • Thursday June 18: 85,926, increase of 3,207;
  • Friday, June 19: 89,748, increases of 3,822;
  • Saturday, June 20: 93,797, increase of 4,049;
  • Sunday, June 21: 97,291, increase of 3,494;
  • Monday, June 22: 100,217, increase of 2,926;
  • Tuesday, June 23: 103,503, increase of 3,286;
  • Wednesday, June 24: 109,014, increased of 5,511;
  • Thursday, June 25: 114,018, increase of 5,004;
  • Friday, June 26: 122,960, increase of 8,942;
  • Saturday, June 27: 132,545, increase of 9,585;
  • Sunday, June 28: 141,075, increase of 8,530;
  • Monday, June 29: 146,341, increase of 5,266;
  • Tuesday, June 30: 152,434, increase of 6,093;
  • Wednesday, July 1: 158,997, increase of 6,563;
  • Thursday, July 2: 169,106, increase of 10,019;
  • Friday, July 3: 178,594, increase of 9,488;
  • Saturday, July 4: 190,052, increase of 11,458;
  • Sunday, July 5: 200,111, increase of 10,059;
  • Monday, July 6: 206,447, increase of 6,336;
  • Tuesday, July 7: 213,794, increase of 7,347;
  • Wednesday, July 8: 223,783, increase of 9,989;
  • Thursday, July 9: 232,718, increase of 8,935;
  • Friday, July 10: 244,151, increase of 11,433;
  • Saturday, July 11: 254,511, increase of 10,360;
  • Sunday, July 12: 269,811, increase of 15,300;
  • Monday, July 13: 282,435, increase of 12,624;
  • Tuesday, July 14: 291,629, increase of 9,194;
  • Wednesday, July 15: 301,810, increase of 10,181;
  • Thursday, July 16: 315,775, increase of 13,965;
  • Friday, July 17: 327,241, increase of 11,466;
  • Saturday, July 18: 337,569, increase of 10,328;
  • Sunday, July 19: 350,047, increase of 12,478;
  • Monday, July 20: 360,899, increase of 10,347;
  • Tuesday, July 21: 369,834, increase of 9,440;
  • Wednesday, July 22: 379,619, increase of 9,785;
  • Thursday, July 23: 389,868, increase of 10,249;
  • Friday, July 24: 402,312, increase of 12,444;
  • Saturday, July 25: 414,511, increase of 12,199;
  • Sunday, July 26: 423,855, increase of 9,344;
  • Monday, July 27: 432,747, increase of 8,892;
  • Tuesday, July 28: 441,977, increase of 9,230;
  • Wednesday, July 29: 451,423, increase of 9,446;
  • Thursday, July 30: 461,379 increase of 9,956;
  • Friday, July 31: 470,386, increase of 9,007;
  • Saturday, Aug. 1: 480,028, increase of 9,642;
  • Sunday, Aug. 2: 487,132, increase of 7,104;
  • Monday, Aug. 3: 491,884, increase of 4,742;
  • Tuesday, Aug. 4: 497,330, increase of 5,446;
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5: 502,739, increase of 5,409;
  • Thursday, Aug. 6: 510,389, increase of 7,650;
  • Friday, Aug. 7: 518,075, increase of 7,686;
  • Saturday, Aug. 8: 526,577, increase of 8,502;
  • Sunday, Aug. 9: 532,806, increase of 6,229;
  • Monday, Aug. 10: 536,961, increase of 4,155;
  • Tuesday, Aug. 11: 542,792, increase of 5,831;
  • Wednesday, Aug. 12: 550,901, increase of 8,109;
  • Thursday, Aug. 13: 557,137, increase of 6,236;
  • Friday, Aug. 14: 563,285, increase of 6,148;
  • Saturday, Aug. 15: 569,637, increase of 6,352;
  • Sunday, Aug. 16: 573,416, increase of 3,779;
  • Monday, Aug. 17: 576,094, increase of 2,678;
  • Tuesday, Aug. 18: 579,932, increase of 3,928;
  • Wednesday, Aug. 19: 584,047, increase of 4,115;
  • Thursday, Aug. 20: 588,602, increase of 4,555;
  • Friday, Aug. 21: 593,286, increase of 4,684;
  • Saturday, Aug. 22: 597,597, increase of 4,311;
  • Sunday, Aug. 23: 600,571, increase of 2,974;
  • Monday, Aug. 24: 602,829, increase of 2,258;
  • Tuesday, Aug. 25: 605,502, increase of 2,673;
  • Wednesday, Aug. 26: 608,722, increase of 3,220;
  • Thursday, Aug. 27: 611,991, increase of 3,269;
  • Friday, Aug. 28: 615,806, increase of 3,815;
  • Saturday, Aug. 29: 619,003, increase of 3,197;
  • Sunday, Aug. 30: 621,586, increase of 2,583;
  • Monday, Aug. 31: 623,471, increase of 1,885;
  • Tuesday, Sept. 1: 631,040, increase of 7,560;
  • Wednesday, Sept. 2: 633,442, increase of 2,402;
  • Thursday, Sept. 3: 637,013, increase of 3,571;
  • Friday, Sept. 4: 640,211, increase of 3,198;
  • Saturday, Sept. 5: 640,211, increase of 3,198;
  • Sunday, Sept. 6: 646,431, increase of 2,564;
  • Monday, Sept. 7: 648,269, increase of 1,838;
  • Tuesday, Sept. 8: 650,092, increase of 1,823;
  • Wednesday, Sept. 9: 652,148, increase of 2,056;
  • Thursday, Sept. 10: 654,731, increase of 2,583;
  • Friday, Sept. 11: 658,381, increase of 3,650;
  • Saturday, Sept. 12: 661,571, increase of 3,190; and
  • Sunday, Sept. 13: 663,994, increase of 2,423.