Jacksonville-area coronavirus updates: Short-term vacation rentals approved to operate in Putnam County

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NOTE: As new information related to the coronavirus comes in regarding Northeast Florida and Southeast Georgia, we will update this story. Please read the entire article for the latest information from May 23.

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Short-term vacation rentals approved to operate in Putnam County

May 23,11:30 a.m.: The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) voted Friday to reopen shortterm vacation rentals in Putnam County.

Letter from Putnam County and the DBPR response:

First Coast YMCA to reopen 14 locations Monday

May 23, 9 a.m.: The First Coast YMCA will welcome back members at its Northeast Florida locations on Monday, May 25. The Y will open in a phased approached to offer a variety of programs and services with appropriate guidance from health officials to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The Y will be open Monday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

New branch hours begin Tuesday, May 26, with the hours of 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. encouraged for vulnerable populations, including active older adults.

Reservations will be required for activities including group exercise classes and lap swimming.

The Y will implement new policies and procedures to ensure the safety of everyone in its branches, including:

  • The Y will limit facility capacity and class size to meet social distancing guidelines.
  • Y employees, except Rescue Ready lifeguards and Group Exercise instructors teaching class, must wear face masks. Members will be encouraged to wear face masks.
  • Health assessments, including a quick survey and temperature check, will be required for everyone at the Y.
  • Members will be asked to sanitize or wash their hands before and after a workout and clean equipment with disinfectant wipes provided by the facility before and after use.
  • The Y has also implemented new stringent cleaning protocols including frequent disinfecting of equipment and high-touch surfaces. The Y will only use cleaning products that meet the EPA’s criteria for use against COVID-19.

“As a community organization serving diverse populations, the Y is committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment for all. As the current public health situation evolves, the Y will continue to evaluate how it can best serve community needs while prioritizing safety,” The First Coast YMCA said in a statement.

Third JTA employee tests positive for COVID-19

May 23, 12 a.m.: A Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) Bus Operator has tested positive for COVID-19, the third positive case at the JTA and the first since April 20, 2020. This employee was last at work on Thursday.

The JTA was informed that this employee sought medical attention at UF Health after experiencing symptoms Friday evening. Upon learning of the positive test, and per JTA policy, all areas, vehicles and facilities were identified and placed into isolation for additional cleaning and disinfecting.

Employees thought to have had prolonged contact, more than 10 minutes in a closed area, were notified Friday evening and instructed to stay home for self-isolation for a period of 14 days and encouraged to seek COVID-19 testing. If they do receive tests, they will not be permitted to report for work until a negative test is returned.

Prior to the positive test, this operator drove the following routes over the past seven days:

Monday, May 18

  • Route 51
  • Edgewood
  • Bus 2106
  • 6:27 a.m. to 10: 50 a.m.

Wednesday, May 20

  • Route 4 – Kings
  • Route 8 – Beach/Town Center
  • Bus 1708
  • 8:40 a.m. – 12:40 p.m.

Thursday, May 21

  • Route 85
  • Highlands/Bush Drive
  • Bus 1423
  • 8:55 a.m. – 4:15 p.m.

Customers will be notified through communications posted on these specific routes this week