Governor approves proposal of reopening vacation rentals in Duval, St. Johns, and Nassau counties

Coronavirus cases locally: County-by-county breakdown

NORTHEAST FLORIDA, SOUTHEAST GEORGIA — More than 46,000 people in Florida and 37,000 people in Georgia have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in Northeast Florida and Southeast Georgia as schools, businesses and public events are closed or canceled.

Action News Jax has the very latest information on Florida and Georgia cases of the coronavirus LIVE on FOX30 and CBS47. Click here to watch.

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 20.

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Governor approves proposal of reopening vacation rentals in Jacksonville, St. Johns County

May 20, 5:03 p.m.: According to a tweet from Jacksonville mayor Lenny Curry, Gov. Ron DeSantis approved Jacksonville’s proposal to resume the operation of vacation rentals.

Additionally, the DeSantis approved St. Johns County’s proposal, according to the county. The plan, according to St Johns County, outlines details regarding a variety of factors including reservations, staffing, cleanings, and inspections.

According to Nassau County officials, the county also got the green light from the governor to resume vacation rentals.

Drive-thru COVID-19 testing site at Prime Osborn Convention Center discontinued

May 20, 3:12 p.m.: The city of Jacksonville has discontinued the Prime Osborn Convention Center COVID-19 testing site.

According to a tweet from the city, the testing site is being suspended due to the expansion of testing throughout Duval County.

Operations at the testing center will be done after the end of the day on Wednesday.

Georgia governor shares thoughts on state’s reopening

May 20, 6:45 a.m.: Action News Jax is hearing from Gov. Brian Kemp about Georgia’s reopening. He says he is optimistic about the direction the state is taking as it continues to reopen. Kemp explained what he believes is important when it comes to reopening.

“The main thing for me really, is the rate of new cases, what our fatalities are looking like and then the percentage of positive are, in addition to how much we’re testing. That is key for us to know where the trends are,” Kemp said.

Kemp took a lot of heat when he was one of the first governors to ease stay-at-home restrictions to get some Georgians back to work nearly a month ago. As of Tuesday, there have been more than 378,000 COVID-19 tests performed in Georgia, and the percentage of people testing positive has dropped a little over 10 percent.

Nassau County to discuss reopening plan for vacation rentals

May 20, 5:55 a.m.: Nassau County commissioners plan to discuss their reopening plan for short term rentals today at 9 a.m. Vacation rental operations remain prohibited in Florida, but phase one of reopening allows individual counties to submit vacation rental reopening plans. If Nassau County’s plan is approved by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, owners of vacation rental homes would have to follow 13 guidelines. Some of the major guidelines include:

  • Rental home owners would have to wait 18 hours between renting out their homes again so the property can be sanitized and inspected.
  • No more than 10 people can be in a vacation rental.
  • Guests must be screened. (Those who went on a cruise or are from the New York, tri-state area must quarantine for 14 days).
  • Remote check ins and check out must be done to reduce face to face contact.
  • Employees like housekeepers must wear gloves and a mask and do temperature checks.

Nassau’s plan also recommends that hand sanitizer is available in all common areas. Vacation rentals in seven Panhandle counties Tuesday were allowed to reopen with some restrictions, after weeks of being shut down as part of Gov. Ron DeSantis’ response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Nassau County to discuss plans to reopen vacation rentals