BOCC to hold Special Meeting April 22 to extend State of Emergency and discuss beach opening

Sabrina Robertson
Public Information Officer (904) 530-6010 [email protected]

Nassau County, Florida, April 20, 2020 –The Board of County Commissioners has scheduled a Special Meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, April 22, 2020, to extend the local State of Emergency. The Commissioners are also adding a discussion of County beaches to its agenda.

Nassau County beaches were closed on Sunday, March 22nd in accordance with Executive Order No. 2. While beaches have remained closed, the County has continued to discuss specific ways to allow some limited use of the beaches without impacting the health and safety of residents. County Commissioners still have concerns about public health and enforcement if beaches are reopened. The County has received hundreds of emails and phone calls from residents on both sides of the issue; approximately half wanting the beaches reopened now and approximately half wanting them to remain closed until the pandemic passes.

Government officials are attempting to make decisions in the best interest of residents. Officials had originally hoped other regional counties would work in concert to open beaches to prevent a surge to one area. County officials were taken by surprise last weekend when Duval county opened without communicating their plans to surrounding county governments. This process added to the frustration for local residents who want our beaches opened now, in spite of the fact that COVID-19 cases in Nassau are still increasing. Nassau County’s main priority is the safety of its residents. Officials will continue to consult with health care professionals and members of the medical field until there is confidence that opening the beaches will not cause adverse effects to the community and that appropriate resources are available to monitor usage. Opening the beaches, even for limited use, will likely increase visitors to the area and could increase the risk of spreading COVID-19 in Nassau County.

Wednesday’s special meeting is open to the public with limited seating. You are encouraged to watch the meeting remotely from the Clerk’s website:

If you have comments you would like included in the record, please email them to [email protected] no later than 9:00 a.m. the morning of the meeting. Include your name, address and the message you are trying to relay. You may also leave a voicemail at (904) 530-6009.

Please note that if numerous emails or messages are regarding the same topic, all may not be read out loud during the meeting, however all will be submitted and retained as part of the permanent record.

If you would like an opportunity to speak at the meeting, please email or call as directed above. Include your name, address, phone number and the topic you are calling about. You will be contacted during the meeting.

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Carol Stephens
Carol Stephens (@guest_57298)
3 years ago

As a beach resident owner, we are told it is ok to Be on their property in front of their house on beach. Isolate – no groups. Please advise police personnel. Mixed messaging out there. Beach patrol verifies ownership. Bravo.

Nicholas Velvet
Nicholas Velvet (@guest_57309)
3 years ago

This is not rocket sience Gents. Walk on the Greenway? OK. Walk on the Bike Paths? OK. Walk on any street on Amelia Island? OK. Walk on the beach? But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Health threat!

I do not see The 6Foot Police anywhere except burning gas up and down the beach. What I do see is 3 people sholder to sholer or couples sholder to sholder(I guess in their homes that stay 6 ft apart) on the bike paths,on the streets,etc. This has NOTHING to do with a popularity contest or vote. You feel threatened walking on the beach? Stay home, ditto walking or bike riding anywhere. Glued to the idiot box(what my decessed parents called a TV), I am sure you’ll get nothing but the truth.

Next up….you guesed it ! Turtle season so beaches closed again! Come June? Numbers are up! Beach closed. September 2020 headline: “Commissioners expand jurisdiction due to public inablity to know what is right for them”. Walking banned except to mailbox within 125 meters of front door between 4pm and 4:15 pm. It’s called a dictatorship, coming to a city near you.

Extreme? Think so? Just wait. Next time you fly listen to the muzak, “we want to keep you safe”.