TreasureCoast Covid 19 Update May 7 2020
There are now more than 38-thousand cases of the coronavirus in Florida. The statewide death toll is up to 15-hundred-39 after another 68 deaths were reported yesterday.
With the number of new diagnoses trending downward and fewer than 300 people on ventilators statewide, the Governor is focusing on getting a clearer picture of how many people have been infected.Governor Ron DeSantis is ready to talk about allowing Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties to enter Phase One of Florida’s reopening.
DeSantis says the testing facility at Hard Rock Stadium will now offer blood antibody testing along with swabbing.
Senator Marco Rubio is open to more coronavirus spending to help state and local governments. But the Florida Republican says taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for pre-pandemic spending decisions that were irresponsible.
A report commissioned by Feeding Florida, the state’s food bank network, shows in a worst case scenario, we could see anywhere from an additional 33-48% jump in additional unemployed workers in our 5-county region.
South Florida food banks are stepping up to meet this potentially unprecedented demand. Nearly every day, 12-14 hours a day the food production kitchen for the Treasure Coast Food Bank is humming. The need is great.
While Palm Beach County is still waiting to re-open under the first phase of the governor’s plan, some businesses on the Treasure Coast want to know when they, too, will be allowed to take the next step.
Bars and pubs are hopeful to soon be able to follow the same re-opening rules as restaurants. Since Monday, restaurants have been able to serve food and alcohol in their businesses, but neighboring bars are still ordered to be closed. It’s the same conflict bar owners say they experienced when they were initially told to close weeks ago. Wednesday evening, streets and sidewalks were busier in downtown Stuart now that restaurants are serving meals and drinks on-site, not just to-go.
The Lion Country Safari announced Wednesday evening the reopening of its drive-thru safari. The zoo’s drive-thru will reopen on Thursday, May 7.
The preserve will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., with the last car admitted at 4:30 p.m. Zoo officials said tickets must be pre-purchased and are only valid for the drive-thru on the selected date. Visitors should purchase one ticket for each person 3 years of age or older inside their vehicles. The walk-thru park remains closed in accordance with social distancing standards and restroom facilities are limited. The zoo suspended all its operations on March due to the coronavirus pandemic. Lion Country Safari is located at 2003 Lion Country Safari Road in Loxahatchee.
Auto sales in Florida and the nation plummeted in the last few months as COVID-19 restrictions hurt another part of the economy. While the drop will further weaken state revenue, the industry’s rebound may benefit buyers. As people spent less and saved more, the Florida Automobile Dealers Association estimates business dropped up to 50% across the state’s more than 800 dealerships last month. Many staying afloat, it says, with lease terminations and collision replacements.
The industry is driving in a new direction — online sales. Many dealerships are now offering ways for consumers to buy a vehicle and deliver it without leaving their homes.
The IRS issued guidance on Wednesday stipulating that dead people (and their descendants), inmates and undocumented immigrants must return stimulus checks that the federal government has been issuing in recent weeks. Most American adults have received or will receive a $1,200 check, depending on income levels.
According to the IRS guidance, a stimulus payment made to someone who died before receipt of the payment should be returned to the IRS. The IRS said the entire payment should be returned unless the check was made to joint filers and one spouse had not died before receipt of the payment. The spouse would return the portion of the check made on account of the decedent. How checks sent to non-joint filers of the deceased will be returned is unknown.
A person who the government declares a “non-resident alien” in 2020 is not eligible for the check. A person who is a qualifying resident alien with a valid Social Security number is eligible for a stimulus check only if he or she is a qualifying resident alien in 2020 and could not be claimed as a dependent of another taxpayer for 2020.
Also, a person is incarcerated return their stimulus check to the IRS, under certain guidelines.
For those who received a paper check, the IRS is requesting the check to be voided and returned to the IRS. Those who cashed the check or received it via direct deposit will need to send the IRS a check or cashier’s check. For more information visit www.irs.gov.
Theme parks are closed, but that’s not stopping efforts to attract tourists to Central Florida. A member of Orange County’s Economic Recovery Task Force said yesterday the group is working on a marketing strategy that could be launched in a matter of weeks.