SEMINOLE COUNTY, FL (March 24, 2020)- Seminole County Office of Emergency Management has been under a Local State of Emergency (LSE) since March 2, 2020, and continues to monitor COVID-19. There are currently 23 confirmed cases in Seminole County, 20 of which are Seminole County residents. Updates can be found at prepareseminole.org and on the County’s social media channels.
COUNTY BUILDINGS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC
In effort to ensure the health of our visitors and employees, Seminole County Government has closed all public-facing buildings, effective Tuesday, March 24. Our departments will continue to provide services via phone, email, and online. Residents may also contact our Citizens Information Line (407-665-0000) and visit SeminoleCountyFL.gov for a directory of online services.
Today’s regularly scheduled Board of County Commissioners meeting agenda has been condensed to items that are time-sensitive in nature. Members of the public may attend, however public comment is permitted only for agenda-related items, and with modified procedures for speaking.
NO COUNTY CURFEW
Seminole County remains committed to the safety and well-being of the public, and is working closely with Seminole County Sheriff’s Office to monitor large gatherings and illegal business operations, and implement additional community policing activities. At this time, there are no reports of congregations exceeding CDC guidelines or businesses operating outside of the Governor’s Executive Orders. As a result, a curfew is not necessary at this time. Concerned residents should continue to practice social distancing and keep interactions to a minimum.
This applies to the waterways, as well. Seminole County boat ramps will remain open.
COUNTY CASES VERSUS CITY CASES
For the purposes of prevention, Seminole County residents and visitors should assume the coronavirus is present on all communal surfaces throughout the County and practice personal protection and thorough handwashing. Reporting the city locations presents an inaccurate snapshot of where contraction occurred, as multiple confirmed cases could be in a singular household.
PET ADOPTIONS ONLINE
The COVID-19 economic impact is directly attributed to an increase of owner-surrenders at Seminole County Animal Services shelter, as many individuals can no longer provide care for their pets upon the loss of income. As a result, Seminole County Animal Services offers an online adoptable pet gallery at SeminoleCountyPets.com and is accommodating adoptions by appointment only to ensure safety.
At present, Seminole County Animal Services is not seeking foster homes for pets, as existing registered volunteers and approved foster homes have risen to the occasion and provided care for pets in need.
However, the pet supply provider for Animal Services reports a lag in supply chain; backordered cat litter and pet food are delaying delivery of essentials. Animal Services greatly appreciates donations of cat litter and pet food; anyone looking to coordinate delivery can call 407-665-5201 and leave supplies at the door. Blankets and towels are not needed at this time.
REPORT BUSINESS LOSSES
Governor Ron DeSantis announced the activation of the Business Damage Assessment survey to assess the impact of COVID-19 on Florida’s local business operations. The survey, managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO), will evaluate businesses affected by COVID-19 and the impacts the virus has had on the local economy so actions to implement appropriate relief programs can begin.
The Business Damage Assessment Survey can be taken online at https://floridadisaster.biz/. Results from this survey will be shared with state agencies and local partners. Surveys submitted by small businesses can be used to access the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan, made available for COVID-19 through the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act.
Once businesses complete the survey, they will be contacted with information upon availability of applicable assistance programs. To date, 136 Seminole County businesses have self-reported $38.4 million in estimated costs of damages, 889 temporary layoffs and 134 permanent layoffs.
Seminole County Office of Emergency Management and Florida Department of Health-Seminole personnel are available daily from 8:00a.m.-5:00p.m. by phone to answer non-emergency questions related to COVID-19 at 407-665-0000. Today, this Citizens Information Line reached 1,000 calls.
Visit PrepareSeminole.org for information related to COVID-19 in Seminole County. Text COVID19INFO to 888-777 to receive updates from Seminole County Office of Emergency Management. Visit Nextdoor.com, Facebook.com/SeminoleCounty, Twitter.com/seminolecounty, and Instagram (SeminoleCountyFL).