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Leon County's reopening plan: Community ready, but cautious

Posted at 11:12 PM, May 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-21 23:12:38-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Leon County is focusing on how to move forward after the pandemic ends, and the community is weighing in.

"I think if people are practicing social distancing, even at the park where we are, I think it would be okay," said Briannne Rucker.

Rucker is glad Leon County has a plan in place, but still wants to give it time before getting back to normal.

County commissioners approved a three-step plan to get back to what they call the New Normal Phase. Currently in Phase One, commissioners reviewed what the next steps could look like.

Phase Two allows social gatherings, higher capacity for retail and restaurants, partial bar openings and reopening some county services.

Phase Three, the New Normal Phase allows businesses to continue increasing capacity while complying with social distancing.

"If numbers start to increase we might have evidence that some of these measures have gone a bit too far," said county commissioners Kristin Dozier.

Dozier is cautious about what the data shows after moving from phase to phase.

"I’m really hoping people maintain social distancing, masks, and other things," Dozier said. "But that is always possible."

Each phase has objectives that must be met and commissioners have the ability to enforce more restrictions, if needed.

Rucker says while we may not be ready for a full reopening now, as long as people are mindful of others the plan should work.

"I think its just a matter of not gathering in large groups," said Rucker.

The county will continue operating in Phase One for now, and as the state moves to new phases, commissioners will meet to see what that means for Leon County.