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MAYOR’S BEE LINE ARTICLE FOR APRIL 2020 March 29,2020
Things have been happening fast in the last two weeks with COVID-19, and numerous decisions have been made to protect the residents of the Keys. We have been trying to keep up with orders from the Governor and the County while doing what is best for KCB. I know that not all our decisions have been popular, but two weeks ago, we were seeing 40 new cases a day in the State and there were 678 new cases Saturday. Further, your Keys Leadership is working to protect us from the Counties just to the north that comprise 59% of the State’s cases (2259 cases) while we in the Keys have 22 cases. I pray every day that I do not see KCB on that list.
For those of you that we asked to leave, thank you. Our decisions were made to protect you also. Our 2 and a fraction small hospitals are struggling to keep critical supplies stocked and our EMS and Police are also short of personal protection equipment. Our back-up is to send patients to Miami hospitals, the largest hot spot in the State.
The decisions from the last several days are targeted at keeping out virus carrying people while still maintaining as much of our economy as possible. We hope to maintain the checkpoints coming into the Keys while allowing workers critical to our businesses to come in daily. KCB has two employees that live in Miami Dade County. This policy is being monitored closely to ensure workers do not pose a risk to the Keys. Numerous “day trippers” have been turned away, totaling 788 cars (approx. 2,000 people) in 48 hours. With our limited manning levels in each department, especially the Police, we can ill afford to have a single person sick, so we are taking very cautious measures to protect them.
Looking ahead, I have asked County Leadership to identify key metrics that should tell us if we need more restrictions or when we can relax some. In the near future, I would like very much to open our parks and have the Governor open restaurants for dining again. Tourism for our many vacation rentals may be a month or two away, but I am hopeful sooner rather than later.
You have been very supportive of our City Government. I thank you and ask that you not become frustrated with our response to this very challenging pandemic.
What is Key Colony Beach? If you are a full time resident, seasonal resident or visitor, you know what a special place this is. Not only are you enjoying a tropical paradise, you are among a great group of people that have kept this little island city the “Gem of the Florida Keys” for more than 60 years. We do ask that our residents and visitors protect our beautiful reef environment, the safety of each other and our friendly tropical lifestyle. Our famous sign, “Honestly now, what’s your hurry?” is not just a reminder that you are off the highway, it is an invitation to enjoy our city, by slowing down on land and in our canals; to “share the road” with our many pedestrians, canal boaters, paddlers, swimmers and manatees. Thank you! – Mayor John DeNeale
“63rd Annual KCB Days”
March 8, 2020
“St. Patrick’s Day Parade”
March 17, 2020
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