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Gov. DeSantis’s Exec Order On COVID-19 Restrictions ‘Part Of A Larger Partisan Strategy’ – Demings

Photo: Orange TV

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings is criticizing an executive order from Governor Ron DeSantis limiting local government emergency orders relating to COVID-19.

In a statement, Demings said the Governor’s actions were “part of a larger partisan strategy by the Republican Party to usurp the authority of Democrat-led urban counties and cities across America.” 

“We expect better from the governor of Florida.”

He said he’ll review the county’s statutory authority and “respond accordingly” to the executive order.

Demings said the governor had been slow to respond to the pandemic, leaving mayors to step in to keep residents safe.

During a press conference Monday afternoon, Demings said the county will continue to work with businesses on social distancing and use of masks to keep residents safe. 

“When there’s a void of direction or guidance, it creates confusion. So I have offered that in our community and I’m going to continue doing that.”

 Orange County opens new vaccination sites

Orange County is offering COVID-19 vaccinations at new sites throughout the county in a push to get the vaccination rate over 50 percent. 

County leaders say more than 44% of residents over the age of 16 have had at least one dose of the vaccine. 

Four new sites are opening Tuesday:- at the West Orange recreation center, South Econ recreation center, Goldenrod Park recreation center and Meadow Woods recreation center.  

They’ll offer up to 1,000 Pfizer doses per day. 

Raul Pino, the director of the Florida Department of Health in Orange County, said the county also tried opening pop up vaccine clinics at two schools last week. 

“So we have to offer that flexibility so that we can get as many people as possible,” said Pino.

“But there is no substitute for personal responsibility in making that decision, because if someone doesn’t want to get the vaccine, we will not be able to give it.”

Pino says the positivity rate for the county is declined from 7.9% last week to 7.2%.

More than 137,000 people have been infected with COVID-19 in Orange County since the start of the pandemic, and 1,253 people have died. 


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Matthew Peddie

About Matthew Peddie

Host of WMFE's Intersection & Assistant News Director

Matthew Peddie grew up in New Zealand and studied journalism at the University of Western Ontario. After graduating with an MA in Journalism he returned to Christchurch, working as a reporter for Radio Live and Radio New Zealand. He’s reported live from the scene of earthquakes, criminal trials and rugby ... Read Full Bio »