Shalala: 'Dangerous' for Florida to open beaches, golf courses

Shalala: 'Dangerous' for Florida to open beaches, golf courses

Rep. Donna ShalalaDonna Edna ShalalaJohn Kerry hosting virtual campaign events for Biden The sad spectacle of Trump's enablers The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Former NIC Director Greg Treverton rips US response; WHO warns of 'immediate second peak' if countries reopen too quickly MORE (D-Fla.) warned against reopening Florida’s beaches and golf courses during the coronavirus pandemic, saying Gov. Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantisDeSantis on Florida schools reopening: 'If you can do Walmart,' then 'we absolutely can do schools' Florida health officials agreed to receive remdesivir from New York before DeSantis dismissed offer The Memo: Democrats feel rising tide in Florida MORE (R) was not giving “clear direction” as localities and cities determine when to reopen.

“I think our governor is new. He's a rookie. He's being pulled in different directions,” Shalala said in an interview with The Hill’s Steve Clemons, adding that much of DeSantis’s attention was occupied with the state’s unemployment system, which she called a “disaster.”

“But again, we are not getting clear direction from him in which every part of the state is staying in place. This opening up of the beaches is dangerous,” she said. “The opening up of golf courses, in my judgment, makes no sense. We don't have a statewide strategy as such.”


Shalala credited mayors of cities including Miami Beach, Miami and Coral Gables, who she said have heeded advice from doctors and scientists.

“They are being much more restrictive, much more tough minded,” she said. “And they're all admitting we don't have the testing in place that we need to have in place before we open up.”

Shalala’s comments come the same day Miami-Dade and Broward counties announced the lifting of some restrictions on use of public spaces, including marinas, golf courses and parks.

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez (R), who himself recovered from a bout with the virus earlier in the year, said the city is not yet prepared to reopen public spaces. When it is, he said, “we are going to be cautious ... our parks, our beach, which is Virginia Key, and marinas with strict adherence of social distancing of six feet or more.”