Last Updated: Saturday, 8:19 a.m.
Palm Coast government today issued a recovery plan that anticipates a three-phased reopening of the city and its economy over the next year, cautiously, gradually resuming mostly normal activities while permanently maintaining new recommended norms such as the wearing of masks in public and re-configuring certain interactions. The phases roughly corresponding to seasons and echoing the White House’s three-phased reopening plan issued last week, but tailored to city residents.
The city is not yet at Phase I–meaning it’s not yet ready to reopen, as Phase I benchmarks have not been met. These include a 14-day downward trajectory in local Covid-19 cases. At the moment, cases are rising in Flagler County, and today the state posted a new high in overall, single-day case confirmations since the crisis began.
Palm Coast’s plan does not see the city’s current coronavirus emergency declaration expiring before winter, nor would normal functions such as full access to government facilities and unrestricted staffing at city worksites resume until then. But the city’s emergency declaration applies almost entirely to city functions and contracting, not to the conduct of business in the city. The plan would also foresee keeping shelter-in-place recommendations for vulnerable populations such as the elderly or people with underlying conditions through the fall. Recommendations are just that: recommendations, and are not enforceable by law.
Even when full access to government facilities, unrestricted staffing and public activities for all resume by winter, the city is planning for a “new normal” for a range of services within its spheres, including interactions between city officials and the public and emergency response procedures. The wearing of face masks in public places would remain a recommendation–if not an eventual requirement– throughout. (The city could only require wearing masks in its own facilities, and would rely on recommendations for mask-wearing in other common areas such as grocery stores. Flagler County Government for its part has a page on its website devoted to cloth face coverings. It includes information about CDC recommendations about when and how to wear them, how to make them, and local options to purchase them.)
The plan sees a lifting of the shelter-in-place recommendation for most residents by early summer, with the limit on activities to “essentials” also lifted. But recommended non-essential travel and limits on socializing in groups larger than 10 would not be lifted until fall, at which time the limit would rise to 50. That means, for example, no summer camps run by the city this year, at least not in the traditional sense. It also means that larger events once conducted at the Palm Coast Community Center would not be possible if they cross the 50-person threshold. In essence, strict social distancing rules in effect now would yield to “moderate” distancing.
The current phase is termed Containment. Phase I is called “Guarded Optimism,” followed by the “Strategic Community Reintegration” of Phase II, and Phase III, “Lift Community Restrictions.”
City Manager Matt Morton developed the plan with city directors, especially with Fire Chief Jerry Forte, and stressed today that it was still a work in progress that would remain as fluid as the emergency has been from its earliest days, with areas of uncertainty filled in only as new knowledge about the virus fills in. That means the plan could be relaxes in coming weeks and months–or tightened, as the data dictates.
Morton, Palm Coast Mayor Milissa Holland and Fire Chief Jerry Forte presented the plan live from the city’s council chambers in mid-afternoon today, in a 25-minute presentation. (It’s available below.)
Palm Coast’s plan does not pre-empt federal and state guidelines, but rather supplements them for local application. Moving from one phase to the next will depend on the governor lifting the current stay-in-place order and on Centers for Disease Control and Health Department recommendations–not on local assumptions, Fire Chief Jerry Forte said. But even when the governor lifts major restrictions, the city is asking residents to continue to abide by certain safety guidelines, including the city’s call on older residents to continue sheltering in place.
Again, guidelines do not carry the force of law: no one can or would be forced to abide by the guidelines, as is the case in some other states and many other countries, though based on some of the public reaction after the plan was issued (see a large number of such comments below), the public was often and wildly misunderstanding the plan as an citywide imposition rather than a framework or guidance, with no enforcement beyond city government properties.
“It’s got to be fluid,” Forte said, repeating the word “flexibility” in any planning.
Though major national polls still find large majorities of the public supporting stay-in-place orders (Reuters-Ipso this week found 72 percent support, including 55 percent among Republicans, for sheltering in place measures until “doctors and public health officials say it is safe”) government officials at all levels have been facing some pressure to lift restrictive orders as economic balms to counter the deepening unemployment crisis.
But all such plans are predicated on “a tremendous amount of assumptions,” in the words of Morton. Those include the assumption that much more testing for Covid-19 will become available, thus facilitating public health officials’ ability to more rigorously monitor any spike in new cases or any clusters, either of which could cause some restrictive rules to resume.
“This is the most current set of assumptions we have and the most current set of information we have” to reopen the community, Morton said. He called it “this challenge of the unknown.” (The plan was altered even Saturday morning. One of the changes included removing the focus on seasons, which was confusing residents.)
Holland said the plan “could change at any given time” either because of a change in Covid-19, or because of another disaster like a hurricane, which will entail their own contingencies.
Gary Soto says
Staying home says
They need to make it mandatory that anyone entering a store wear a mask. Walmart on Tuesday only 2/3 wearing a mask and Home Depot only 1/2 wearing a mask if that. The employees were wearing them. No mask no service!
JENNIFER JEWELS says
noooooooooooooooooooooooo we are a free country!
Freedom doesn’t include the right to infect other people, just as freedom of expression does NOT give you the freedom to yell “fire” in a crowded theater. Freedom comes with responsibilities.
Bruce Leslie says
1. If someone tells a lie the usually project onto others subconsciously..so if big powerful people , countries, political idologie wanted to take over the USA or the world and create scare tactics this would be a wonderful example with what has happened now. Most projections if they did something worng would want to wash their hands of the mess they made…so by projections of WASH your HAND
they make another feel dirty ashamed and blamed.
2. If big pharma wanted to chip you and follow you then turn on 5 G that kills birds and damages human cells and has posably the same or close to same medical diagnosis as covid . Do you want to follow and jump of the end of the pier or use free will choice.
3 . How many times do lice, head colds, stomach virus, E coli , hepatitis c , papaloma virus transmit and humans either do not get it, get it and get treated or an underlying issue gets them worst. Did we need to wear masks gloves and stop.school and work and crash the economy.
4 India… older , weaker , underlying health issues are to stay home and be in lockdown.
Young and healthy go to work and wash hands, distance, disinfect..stay away from the self isolated.
Farming is cycle with Earth. Keep farming or the whole county will starve. So what does being in the sunlight fresh air farming vs exercises mean to feeding people.
5 this is a lesson in free will, the body dies but the soul learns, I hope we all learn to make healthy free will choices. Thank you 😊❤️
Billy C says
That is a totally juvenile response. Free country doesn’t mean you get to do what you please and to hell with everyone else. The masks is to protect everyone, even shallow people like you.
John Leno says
The masks that most people are wearing will not help or stop anything!
Bill C says
Then wear one that does, Mask expert.
Sunny Daze says
I totally agree with you. When I finally went to Walmart i was amazed by all the little kids riding in the carts with no masks on – along with their mothers of course. All the kids are packed inside the cart holding onto the edges of it. I’m sure these irresponsible parents didn’t sanitize the cart before they put them in there. I actually saw one little boy riding in the seat of the cart who had his mouth open over the push bar. And there were actually a couple kids coughing, without covering their mouths, of course. It’s because of ignorant, selfish people like these that rules have to be made and enforced. If everybody used common sense from the beginning, I don’t feel we’d be in this predicament. Unfortunately common sense is not common anymore.
I knew were in for a shit show when the president said hes not wearing a mask…. smh
Leslie S Johnson says
I don’t even bother with Walmart anymore. If I want something from there, I’ll buy it online. The store is dirty, the carts are a disgrace and generally the people who go there …. ugh. I’ll find what I need elsewhere & not give a care about Walmart stores.
Elaine Rhoades says
Give me. Break this is AMERICA if people do not want to wear a mask that is their choice. We need to get Flagler county people back to work so they can support themselves. Too many families suffering. Stop trying to isolate those who are elderly ( as you say) that again is their choice. Read the facts not everyone who has contracted this man made virus in Flagler County is old in fact its just the opposite. We are AMERICAN’S and we have a Constitution so lets live by it.
Pissed in PC says
So I guess seniors and medically risky are not allowed to have a life! Who died and made you God to say we don’t deserve to shop, enjoy life. We have a right to be safe from idiots who don’t care about anybody but themselves!
John Leno says
United Socialists of America! Is this what we have become?
You’re afraid, so I have to wear a mask?
Let’s be real says
You can’t make people wear masks out in public as the new norm.
Yes. Masks can and should be required to reduce possibility of spread.
Many people everywhere are infected and spreading this without realizing it because testing is so inadequate. It is a small sacrifice…
Masks will be freedom of choice. This is America!
Bill C says
WE fully know what country we are in. But, we also know that your lack of care, courtesy, compromise, and common sense is what makes this subject impossible to discuss. It’s not just your freedom.
Yes, you can. Other countries that have successfully controlled the virus (and we have not yet) issue fines / citations for not social distancing and wearing masks. We should too if people won’t take personal responsibility.
Let’s be real says
First, tell me the other countries that have successfully controlled it that were as bad off as we were. Second, last time I checked we are AMERICA. The land of the FREE
Gary R says
Which states require you to wear a face mask in public? https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/04/20/which-states-require-you-to-wear-a-face-mask-in-public/
This is almost too comical to entertain anymore. The entire county experiences 2 Pneumonia deaths in all of 2020 and they propose to take an entire year to reopen this county ? Look at it, it’s 2-3 Exit ramps at best. FL 100, PC Parkway & Matanzas Woods Parkway with sporadic commercial in between. Beachside it’s really FL 100 & several blocks radiating in any direction from the pier. It would take a year to reopen all that ? What a disappointing plan. Underachievement at it’s finest. I mean really, most of those businesses are still operating with take out, Wal-Mart could go back to 24/7 operations tomorrow if they so announced it. European Village, that’s like the outdoor mall, it wasn’t exactly packing them in over the entire year of 2019, why wouldn’t 2020-2021 be a matter of a grand reopening ? The “essentials” have truly lost their collective minds on this. If the schools are reopening, that means every business county wide can be reopened, same with the Government buildings. Those are a matter of taking the posted 8 1/2×11 copier paper signs off glass doors. That can happen on any given day at a magical time, just like Daylight Savings Time happens every March & Standard Time happens in the November.
Jim O says
Great post. A person with original thought, nice. This city/county may not have the proper mindset nor ability to open back up. Frankly, we are only increasing in cases due to more and different criteria for testing… You think! Some of this article scares me with a lack of understanding of respect for ALL people that live here. Not to mention, people commenting on demanding people do this or do that. Last time I checked I lived in the USA. Stop the craziness…
Billy C says
Another mathematical genius, offering us numerical and geographical computations to determine whether the city’s governing body should take precautions or throw caution to the wind. I am thankful you are just a citizen and not an elected government official.
Jim O says
Billy C: qutoe from the Flagler Live article a few days back when there was a spike.
“Of the 28 new positive cases in Flagler, 23 are from 79 tests conducted at that location on Tuesday, says Lord, and under much looser criteria for testing. “As of yesterday officially, it’s anybody with any one symptom of Covid-19,” he said. Previously the criteria had been that individuals had to be 65 or older”
Study up before you comment, just saying…
Billy C says
Jim O, I was replying to the numerical salad served up by Jimbo99, not your comment. In this ever-changing situation everyone seems to have an opinion and while some choose to follow governmental guidelines others simply shout, “it’s a free country” and offer that as a solution. Enough of molding numbers to fit whatever side of the argument you are on. A compromise of some sort is needed. Okay, so the beaches are open and the testing is finally ramping up. So, why isn’t simply wearing a mask in stores or in public places where their are others, a respectful mid ground? Instead commentors are demanding, bickering, threatening and challenging any attempt to get our City back to some sense of normalcy. Selfishness to be the word of the day.
Read the constitution article 14.
This is great. Thank you for using science and common sense in a way that will help save the lives of as many people as possible. There are too many people in the community with underlying health conditions, both known and unknown, and their lives are just as important as others. This is a measured approach that will ensure we avoid a second wave deadlier than this one. I will be the first in line for antibody testing once we have it available.
CHAS IN PC says
What science are you following? Not statistical !! ·Professor John Ioannidis, Stanford University professor of medicine, warned against making decisions without reliable data. The insanity needs to 🛑 Stop listening to couch potato scientists!!
Right on. When will doctor office be open. Elective surgery. We who do not have virus are being neglected. What about our right to freedom of religion.? That has been taken away. This is
Over the top.
People with underlying health conditions can stay home and the rest who don’t can get back to work. Peoples lives are being destroyed and getting very depressed. Going back can be done safely with guidelines in place
Billy C. says
Yes, the Vietnam vet who still suffers the effects of agent orange should stay home despite fighting for his country? The retired cop who dug through the rubble at the World Trade Center and now has a respiratory problem should stay home? The Pastor who went to under-privileged countries around the world and came back with some nasty illness but survived should stay home? But, you and your business venture, which was never guaranteed to succeed are now depressed because you are being asked to wait a little while longer? SMH carry on.
I sure hope this article is not true I can see a mass exodus out of Palm Coast
That’s fine, all the morons can leave then and get sick elsewhere
Sunny Daze says
Exactly! Let them all leave in the same vehicle.
I simply want to know how the city will reconfigure itself. Revenue will clearly be down for many, many reasos, expenses will be increased for many, many reasons. Do we operate or close down our golf course, our tennis center, our sport complexes or do we continue to maintain them without revenue. Sales tax will be down,property appraisals will be down, apportionments from the State and Federal governments will be down. I think people will be forced to realize that life will be different and the new normal will not even be recognizable.
Carol Harris says
Probably some of the same people who “were” going to leave the country if Donald Trump was elected President. We need masks and gloves and every other precaution until it’s deemed safe to go without.
Pissed in PC says
No that would be the Trump supporters protesting and screaming their free to do what they want and the hell with everyone else. Selfish jerks.
Steve Vanne says
We do live in America, land of the free, well at least it used to be. I drove down Dixie highway the other evening all the way to Mason. Volusia parks r open people doing what they normally do. The people running Flager county, well put it this way I have zero respect for them. People need to get back to work. Let our people GO….
Agree! There idiots and sure hell won’t be voted in by me again. They don’t have common sense. So disgusted with local government. Be prepared to have us True Americans to stand up for our freedom. There will be protest if they don’t opening up!!!
There’s not way they can enforce everyone wearing mask I don’t wear one now and the city can’t force me and anyone else to wear one ! You bet there will be a lot of lawsuits!!
The use of a mask in public for use to combat an international viral respitory infection in absolutley enforcable. They can even go as far ad deeming it an act of terrorism for anybody not following these oreders repeatedly.
Anyone whonisnso selfish they are not willing to wesr a mask to help protect others is not the type of American this country deserves.
The Fourteenth Amendment explicitly prohibits states from violating an individual’s rights of due process and equal protection.
Sunny Daze says
Amen. That’s the problem with some Americans…. it’s all the me-mes and my-mys who kept this thing going in the first place. Selfish people who have no regard for other people at all. I’ve been saying all along that it only takes one and there’s always been at least one who has to moan and groan and break the rules. If people would have stayed in from the beginning and only gone out for essentials with a mask on, this would have probably been nipped in the bud. When I left the house for essentials after 3 weeks, I was disheartened by all the traffic and people out and about. So sad. We’re such a blessed country. Heaven forbid we sacrifice for the sake of others.
Oh, let’s let them free. They can be the guinea pig for the smart people. When they keel over on the beach, Constitution clenched in their fist, we will all know….”oops, I guess they were wrong?”
NEXT CONTESTANT PLEASE!
The plan doesn’t seem to include retail stores opening, at least not that I could see. I can only imagine the Fall Season with no department stores and trying to do Xmas shopping and all the holiday things. Now CDC is saying virus could return in Fall or Winter. I am totally in favor of knocking down this virus and doing what we can to prevent it, but keeping people out of jobs, money, school is going to cause a revolt of some sort. Right now our numbers are spiking higher, even if it is only a few at a time, but hopefully there will be a down turn soon.
Who is the center of the universe? says
Why don’t you wear a mask or some type of face covering? Is there a reason why you’re not concerned about transmitting the virus to others? Until we get to the point where we can test everyone for antibodies which indicates immunity, everyone needs to be wearing face covering. It seems a callous lack of empathy driving your comment which is quite concerning.
Carole Brasfield says
I’ll wear it in crowded or busy stores like grocery stores but out in the sunshine …. on a walk…. at the beach…. that aint gonna happen with me…
Joe Shabottz says
I have live in Palm Coast since I moved here in 1983. I have never seen such draconian, power hungry fools as the current city leadership. Much better before the city became incorporated
I too have been around before Itt palm coast started building this area .
This government party, are not thinking at all .
All they think about now Keeping there Jobs Mayor !!!!!
Democratic leftist people are way toooo…..
far out there!!!!
Please vote these type of people out of offices…
Been here since 1989. 100% agree with you. If everyone is forced to wear a mask, I can see crime rate going up because no one will be able to be identified when caught on camera. For the people that think that wearing a mask is a good thing and should be the norm because you are afraid of Covid 19. How about you all stay home ALL the time and let the rest just go about their lives. I believe the actions of the city council are to destroy the cities economy. They have been doing it before Covid 19 by not bringing in businesses instead of repeat businesses that we have more than plenty of. Communists walk among us. Time to clean the swamp of Palm Coast come election day.
William M. Pierson III says
Palm Coast needs new leadership now. Current leaders are trampling on the federal and state constitutions.
peter palazzotto says
1open up the beach with no where in hammock to park 2 no handicap parking at all by the way if you open for 10 minutes it illegal federal state and local if closed ok 3 does heat humidity uv and sunlight facts lies 4 if not how can you keep beaches closed under any restrictions with no data or back it up and are at this time safest place on the planet to be 5 are these numbers right 105 total cases in 11 weeks 5 hospitalized rest sent home 6 when testing more people are you finding more people that had it and is that the reason numbers are going up 7 no more new people being admitted to hospital 8 two dead in last 11 weeks sad but is that about right 9 with these numbers and no new facts how do you come to this 12 month conclusion. 10 my facts numbers dont add up most resturants that dont own property wont reopen the same go for small shops unemployment in county cant even guess beach community.you have to try to get back to normal that wont work you guys are planning to far ahead open our beaches and shops and lets see what happens we cant live in fear of the unknown dont mind spelling had stroke and struck by lightening god bless facts and science only week to week
While we have no objections to occasional Ulysses digressions we kindly ask commenters to please verbalize punctuation when dictating to Siri.
I’ll never wear a mask either, i honestly think people look stupid wearing one.
Awesome. Your vanity could put others at risk. Stay home.
Sunny Daze says
Better to look stupid than be laying in a casket.
Seriously you think people shouldn’t wear one because it looks stupid??? Do you think it looks stupid when someone is gasping for air or dying alone because family can’t visit
I just don’t understand!!!
Says no-one EVER says
has nothing to do with looks. If you are sick or have immune issues YOU STAY HOME!
700+ kids in spring baseball alone, not sure how many in other sports, but I cant even begin to imagine all those kids wearing masks! The only fun thing would be watching all the T-ballers rip each others masks off, and fill them with snacks, and dirt. Then again, being forced into such rediculous rules would probably be the end of all sports in this town. Someone said “mass exodus”, indeed I say.
These events will most defenitly be canceled this year.
Would be best for everyone. Especially the children.
Fed Up says
You had my vote the first time. Do not count on it for a second time.
Michael P says
This is plan is BULL! There won’t be many businesses left in Palm Coast to worry about if their employees are wearing masks or not! What a disappointing plan. I look forward to the upcoming Mayoral Election. With businesses going to fail, taxes will rise…a prescription for a disaster….and yes people leaving this beautiful area. The Mayor, Fire Chief will continue to be paid by our tax dollars, and could care less if they cause a exodus of great business here in Palm Coast. Good thing Flagler County has had only 2 deaths so far…who knows what measures this group would come up with! This city will face more layoffs, unemployment, vacant homes and closed business, as well as loss of property tax revenue with this plan going into next winter.
Cecil Hengeveld says
I hope that professions suave as barbers would publish how they would provided their device while keeping customers as safe as possible. I have to be confident that any business that is open will be relatively safe to enter. Many restaurants will need new seating arrangements before I am their customer. I would hope Flagler business’s tell our elected reps how they intend to conduct their business in a safe manner. Until a vaccine is hear masks and social distance are our only tools to be safe.
Linda H. says
The one wrinkle in all this is a busy hurricane season. You cannot social distance in a hurricane shelter. The sooner we learn to live with this, the better. It is not the number of cases the Florida Dept. of Health is looking at, it is the number of ICU hospitalizations. Eight patients in a hospital and two deaths does not warrant shutting down an entire county. If you want to stay home, then stay home. You also cannot force people to wear masks. All this must be voluntary. Despite all the panic, last year’s flu was more devastating.
The only people you can force to remain home are those who are positive for the virus. Testing all would be a very good idea. In the meantime, we need to develop a plan to open all small business in the area while we still have any small business in the area.
Margot Lindholm says
We do NOT have 8 people in the hospital. That is an accumulative total since the beginning. This is absurd. They think all seniors should be locked in their houses through to the winter?? No no no and no.
I totally agree. You have a good head on your shoulders 😉. You should run for office, and replace who is there, perhaps the mayor.
Said No-one Ever says
Finally some one with a brain!!! Linda H, Bravo!
R Griffin says
You, nor Bill Gates and his ilk, cannot infringe on people’s Constitutional Rights. My family is moving, I wouldn’t return any price or event. The only mask I’ve worn was behind home plate. I’ll be gone by mid-summer…maybe I’ll move to Georgia.
The Truth says
Why wait until mid summer? Georgia will take you now, adios.
This is absolutely ridiculous! Of course, we need to continue to take measures to stop/control the virus, but we can not keep our community closed. This is forcing people to bankruptcy, killing business, and creating an unhealthy mental health situation. Instead of taking a year to return to some kind of normalcy why not take steps that include encouraging the wearing of masks, cut occupancy in the movie theatre by taping of certain seats, drop restaurant occupancy or expand outside dining areas; there are hundreds of ideas that do not involve staying in some kind of lockdown situation for months!
I am disappointed in ALL of our government leaders; they are not critical thinkers; in my opinion, they are all self-serving, ego-driven, lazy thinkers. I agree with an earlier comment, there is going to be plenty of folks leaving this area. I have lived in Flagler County since 2000, oh how I wish ITT was still in charge!
I agree..stagger opening the shops, restaurants, salons with limited number of shoppers and customers and let’s continue being careful snd cautious for the next couple months to keep the virus from spreading. But if we continue to obscess that this virus is powerful enough to dominate and ruin our right to life and destroy out economy and livelihood we’re doomed to a very dismal, bleak future.
Totally agree with opening our shops, retail, restaurants, bars, etc with reduced seating to allow for distancing. Also outside seating areas could be extended wherever possible. Wear masks inside busy stores when it makes sense. We need people back to work and life must go on. Those of us that don’t want to go out into the mix, can choose not to!
Maria Darcy says
Susan, I totally agree with your post. Business owners will come up with their own creative ideas in order to reopen. I am ready to organize a taxpayer represented committee to get this county open. Did they forget they work for us? These power thirsty lawmakers need to hear from us.
You get what you got, most so called leaders are Republicans. Just like every other scew up, natural, man made, mother nature it will take Democrats to clean it up and fix the problems. Once Democrates are solving the problems the Republicans will start bitching and moaning again. This is American Historty 101!
Is that what is happening in Detroit and San Francisco right now? Democrats cleaning things up? Lol.
Percy's mother says
Did you ever actually take American History 101 in college?
I don’t remember the course being all about republicans vs democrats and that democrats can solve all the problems.
So many good soldiers died for freedom and now people are just voluntary throwing it away. They have no idea what all this will lead to. Totalitarian government, with dependince on government. Poverty is in the future with inflation around the corner. This is out of control.
Lawyer up Palm Coast
We live in a free country. They cannot make us wear masks. They cannot make us not gather in less than 10 people. Wake up! They are stripping our rights and we are ok with it?! This is still not anywhere near what the flu takes out yearly. And if you think this virus just started in March I suggest you do a little more research. Easily here before the end of 2019. If this passes, which we as tax payers should fight, you will have protests on your hands.
Robert Geers says
THIS IS ABSURD!!!!
These leaders need to know their place. This is not Russia. People need to back to work to survive! Businesses need to open to survive!!!
Since when is the Fire Chief an expert on everything. He should stick to fighting the 2 fires a month we have.
Proud American says
The local government needs to realize they do not own our beaches, parks, businesses, etc.
You have no right to restrict our uses of them.
This nonsense of only opening them for three hours and you don’t have a place to park is ridiculous.
You do realize this virus is not going to go away. There will be others. Life cannot be lived in fear.
We have a right to live our lives.
Those in high risk groups or those who have been programmed to Be in fear of being outside can And should maintain safety measures.
The truth is we have a right To decide what is best for our own lives and those of our children.
It is damaging to my and my children’s health what the city is doing. We need to go to the dentist, regular checkups, eye doctor, haircuts, shopping, etc.. All year round we use the parks and beaches regularly. We have never ever been crowded. We have been able to go do our thing and come home without even seeing people most weekends.
Our local control freak government needs to be overthrown for infringing on our sovereignty and our basic human rights.
What kind of ignorant human being thinks it’s safer to be home all day or only in supermarkets or gas stations, than out at the beach or a local park?
We are not owned by the city officials. We pay the taxes, we pay your salaries.
Our children are NOT learning at home. They will be the ones To suffer the most, you have no idea the damage you are causing to them.
In the words Of Ben Franklin:
Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
william sikes says
All the tyrants need to voted out.
Get one free red maga-lignancy hat when you purchase a 1$ shot of bleach.
Meet on the beach.
Don’t forget the internal sun lamp. 😳
Thelma McFarland says
I left pc 3 yrs ago coming back in June just bought a house today. I am so glad to read this i feal much safer here now. If you are one that does not worry about this virus i hope you do leave.
Concerned Citizen says
I refuse to wear a mask on a day to day basis. Unless I am sick. So there. I have spent the bulk of my adult life in public safety. And even though I was a lowly Fire Fighter/EMT I have a pretty good understanding of how these type of things work. We have gotten mixed messages from day one in regards to masks. Unless you are wearing a certain type they are useless.
Finally there’s a thing called the Constitution. I swore an oath to it when I enlisted and then spent 16 years in the military. Until they propose a new amendment and ratify it what they are doing locally is illegal. So try to enforce it and let us band together and sue them for everything they have.
And if that makes me Un American then you and Joe Mullins can load me up on that bus or cattle car under armed escort and ship me off to that internment camp for Un American citizens
By the way.
I’m also noticing that there has been no mention of penalties for big box stores and Hammock Beach Resort disregarding CDC guidelines and Executive Orders. To date only our local busniesses have been affected. And we have been denied the right to worship in our respective churches.
Wake up Palm Coast! People need you to listen stop being so tone-deaf! we need everything opened up and back to normal! We are well informed people. We read data and know that this is only dangerous for those with pre-existing health issues and weak immune systems. The measures you are taking and the slowness of the pace you are choosing is killing Palm Coast businesses, families with bills to pay and mental health. The data does not support your incredibly draconian leadership style. You are making this more painful unnecessarily. Other states and countries even that did not do the lockdown aren’t doing any worse in terms of infections even when adjusting for population differences. There is no justification for stifling the life vibrance and energy and not to mention business of Palm Coast like you are doing! Enough is enough! Open up everything and stop this nonsense!
Only the elderly and the immunocompromised need to be sheltered up. For the rest of us these measures are not necessary. You’ve been telling us to stay at home and we now know that you should have been telling us to go out in the sun where the virus is killed in 2 minutes instead of 18 hours. Get with the current data and update you thinking!
You’ve got some people buying into this nonsensical fear-based way of living, but most of us have awoken and can see that this is the wrong way to proceed. You will be punished at the ballot box if you don’t become more responsive and positive in your thinking and decision-making. Reopen everything in Palm Coast now!
Paul, you could’ve gone outside in your own yard or even walked your own street and got sunshine and a little exercise. We weren’t told not to go outside our home into our own yards, only to go to other places if it was essential, like food, prescription, etc.
Tulip, where have you been this past month? Go through the comments on here. Whining about people having the audacity to ride their bikes or walk a trail. One comment describing people who take a drive by themselves as terrorists. I’m concerned for the mental health of this community, with or without a quarantine.
I am an Essential worker, so,since this whole show began……I have been going to work every single day……it is ‘Mind Boggling’ to me that 90% of the people that are coming into our ‘Essential’ business are all over the very vulnerable age (or so the guidelines say) of at least 65-90 years old folks!!!!! They wear no masks, no gloves, and come in to purchase something as ‘ un-essential’ as a $2.99 plant, or they need to replace a tile, or a paver, or to buy ridiculous items that are definitely not ‘Essential’…..and they all act like they are entitled……..it appears they ‘do not know what STAY AT HOME means……..and these are the people that the State is trying to protect by having businesses closed…….it would make sense to me that in order to make progress you would have to issue a MANDATE that forces these ‘at risk’ people to STAY HOME,and let the people that are not at risk or have a lower risk factor get back to normalcy and return to work and gain their dignity back.
So you want to essentially forcefully imprison anyone unfortunate enough to be considered at risk? They don’t have any rights?
Good idea says
That’s what we can do to help the ones at risk. We can keep the economy going while they stay home!!!!
I’m shocked that our City Officials have not weighed all sides of safely trying to figure out a way to “get Flagler moving again.”
With all of the data, Phases, and science that is readily available, how can your PLAN of action be to stay locked down until the fall?
I am one of the many people furloughed in Flagler County, and I need to get back to work!
Here’s an idea soft open with safe distancing, mask’s, sanitizing, etc. Limit the number of people at any given time in an establishment…BE SMART, and use common sense, which every small business owner would do.
Do you think that our local businesses can withstand several more months of closure?
Our officials are elected to find common sense, pragmatic solutions not to perpetuate panic.
Finding solutions to re-open the local economy, rather than projecting about the unknown future in 5 or 6 months will better serve our citizens and local businesses.
So, if you’re going to require me to wear a mask does that mean you’re going to supply them? Just asking.
William M. Pierson III says
Holland, Morton and Forte need to go.
“But the Constitution…” When reading the Constitution, did people here skip over the Supreme Court section? Did they never hear of rulings by the Supreme Court of the United States?
“The Constitution does not import an absolute right in each person to be, at all times and in all circumstances, wholly freed from restraint.” Instead, “a community has the right to protect itself against an epidemic.” Its members “may at times, under the pressure of great dangers, be subjected to such restraint, to be enforced by reasonable regulations, as the safety of the general public may demand.”
-Justice John Marshall Harlan
Jacobson v Massachusetts 7-2 majority opinion
Stephen Smith says
Problem is people interpret the constitution like they interpret the Bible. Pulling bits and pieces together to support what they want to believe regardless of the totality of the document.
Gary R says
Mask or No mask?
Some states are requiring people to wear masks in certain places. There are few exceptions, though people who can’t wear masks for medial reasons are exempt. People who refuse to wear masks aren’t required to provide proof that they’re medically exempt. How does this make any sense?
There are concerns, too, that black and Latino men and women in masks may be racially profiled. Several people who spoke to CNN earlier this month said they wouldn’t wear masks in public because they feared they’d be presumed to be criminals.
If people not wearing masks offend you, you could have your food or items delivered. You be helping that self-employed person financially during these tough times.
Very sad that our leadership has come to this. The only thing consistent throughout this plan is Palm Coast Connect aka Coastal Cloud. Nothing like taking like advantage of a pandemic to increase your foot print. It is absolutely time for new leadership in Palm Coast.
Can't wait to move away from Palm Coast says
Our family moved here two years ago and we can’t wait to move away. We have never regretted a decision so much in our lives than moving to this miserable town. Epic mistake.
Georgia isn’t too far away. Still plenty warm. Business is opening rapidly there.
CB from PC says
This “town” is nothing more than a loosely connected group of individual strip malls. I have seen many run-down small towns, but at least they had a history and spirit. Not here. Tough to move again at my age…but I am tough.
The city will be facing a huge deficit and will be laying off their own just at the time the city fills up with tons of rental properties and vacant homes like not so long ago.
Looks like I’ll be going to the gym in St. Augustine, shopping in Daytona and getting haircuts somewhere else too.
Their “science” doesn’t add up. People have had this virus in this community since January. To shut the town down on the small sampling of testing they’ve had is a joke.
William Powell says
I suppose Palm Coast’s illustrious and genius leaders are going to personally dip into their own substantial bank accounts to bail out all the failing businesses that will be a result of this asinine plan. This isn’t about protection for the community any more. This is about power-mad city leaders grasping for more power so they can turn this city into their own dystopian nanny state. You fools are all going to get voted out of office this November. Your trampling of the Constitution will not be tolerated by the citizens of this county. You tyrants are hereby on notice!
We need to know how many people have had it. I know that at least Rymfire had a pretty rough sickness going around starting late January and all through February. The sickness hit the adults worse than the kids. It would be interesting to see how many adults were out for an extended period (teachers don’t like to miss school because they are sick because it’s a pain in the neck).
We have no idea how many people have already had it so we have to treat it like everyone can still get it (and maybe they can get it again) but until that is known it’s pretty tough to plan what to do.
My youngest goes to Rymfire. I caught something a the end of January and then at the end of February/beginning of March and ended up with bronchitis both times. It was horrible. My kids both got it each time but bounced back very quickly. My mother caught it from us and had some breathing trouble the second time around as well. Her doctor just told her it might actually have been covid-19, but since no one was testing for it then, no one would have known. We’re hoping the antibody tests become more widely available.
Power hungry fools run the city and county. Be prepared fir law suits, and business after business closing up fir good thought I lived in America, not Cuba. Read the constitution, and realize we have rights, that can’t be infringed on. Hope you have lots of money to fight the law suits
Great plan. Drive more money out of PC. People will just go to Flagler Beach, Daytona area, or StAugustine. You people have lost your minds. Best lawyer up. Your going to need it.
Good for Palm Coast to be so pro-active and cautious!
Just because the virus hasn’t come to you yet, doesnt mean it won’t. If you relax too soon, it will.
What some people aren’t understanding is that, as epidemiologists have been saying for years and predicted years ago, these viruses are here to stay with more dangerous ones to come, and will become the norm. Wearing masks in public will become the new norm, as it already is in other countries. We’re just late reacting, as usual. If social distancing and wearing masks is all I have to do to keep myself, my family, my community, and economy safe – I’m in.
If some people who dont take it seriously want to move away to less safe communities, fine, that will make Palm Coast that much safer without them. Those who dont take it seriously endanger the rest of us.
Being an aging senior I will not be sheltering in place for the summer here which is absurd. I will be out and about in the state of New Hampshire White Mountain region where the risk is far less and with people who have more common sense than those governing this county. I’ll be back next winter when the Flu season starts once again.
Stay home, all I see is the stupidly of MONEY taking control over peoples lives by opening to darn early. .
Someone. Anyone. Please buy my house!!
Like it or not, FB, PC and Flagler County will open up, and it’s not going to take till the end of the year. Those that think they can force everyone to follow their time frame and continue to infringe on our basic civil rights, are idiots. People will not tolerate this, and you can’t arrest everyone
For all you people complaining about others not wearing masks. There is an easy solution, STAY AT HOME. You can order everything you need delivered to your door. This way you won’t be bothered by what goes on in the real world.
How can we remain shut down when none of the Big Box stores ever closed? Think about this for just a moment. All of the grocery stores have been open, along with every CVS and Walgreens. Then add to that the ABC store, Target, Walmart, Home Depot, Lowe’s, and PetSmart. Our department stores have been selling online. The ONLY things that were shut down here WERE small businesses.
If we can safely find a way to keep all of the above open, there simply is no reason to deprive small businesses from opening. Get a grip, people.
Were a mask what’s the big F in deal
Who’s the center of the universe? says
No a single one of you yelling about your rights has a care for the rights of others. Thank God you’re not in a leadership position in this city. Also, you are not medical professionals. No educated, trained nurse, physician, respiratory therapist or anyone who cares for Covid patients would agree with your selfish rants about your rights. You have the right to help stop the spread of this virus. You do not have the right to expose others to it. Get a degree in medicine then you can talk about what should be done to care for and protect other humans. Study science. It is factual not bluster and irrational ego filled meltdowns and name calling. Stop politicizing science. Again, if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem. With all due respect, 95 goes North too. Feel free.
My brother needs heart surgery. He lives in Illinois. The surgery was scheduled the week of lockdown so it was cancelled!! He has a Long history of heart disease, in the hospital several times with AFib. He may die by not having surgery. The hospitals are half empty. Who knows how many will die due to this lockdown. So many people are being ignored, including the sick who do not have the virus along with small businesses. Time to get back to normal, take care of the sick, the cure is worse than the virus
Someone should alert Melissa Holland and the rest of the people running this City that they are NOT essential! Especially since they want to destroy the City and ruin people’s businesses.
C.J. Watson says
Sorry but this idea is ridiculous!!! How about we have a little faith in people doing the right thing and being smart about how they go about their business. You cannot control people like puppets. Give some guidelines and suggestions and let people get back to work. This is not effecting those of you still getting paid, but it is effecting the majority of us in the community!!! God Bless America
Fed up says
This plan is asinine and will ruin wayyyyyy more lives than the damn virus. Wait until the suicide rate skyrockets. Businesses will fail, lawsuits will be filed. Let the people who are afraid stay home and the rest can get back to work. If you feel you can safely go to the grocery store and Walmart then ALL businesses can reopen safely. I have a home here and also In Tennessee and they are doing it right. 4 phases, two weeks at a time leading to everything open in June. Safety measures in place, slowly getting back to normal. This is beyond overreach of government control and they can kiss their jobs goodbye come Election Day.
Donna Heiss says
Wow. Reading some of these posts really make me think a lot of people want to live under these conditions. What makes the will to live so strong in lockdown? Personally I don’t understand it. What is there to look forward to? Nothing.
Interesting to note that as a society, we have been trained to do every activity while sick and injured. People are required to go to work OR not get paid, in many instances.
If a person is out ill for longer than expected, there are consequences, such as lost wages, lost benefits, lost job. Rather than that happen, so many go to work while sick with the flu and other contagious illnesses. This is a very sad thing about our society. I know that I, personally, resent those who come in knowing they have the flu and thank you very much, share it. I’ll see you in two months when I can finally get out of bed from the voracity of your gift.
The other thing is the hand washing bit. If you’ve ever heard someone holler out from a stall: WASH YOUR HANDS – it may have been me. There are certain cultures and people who will use the restrooms and will NOT stop to wash their hands. If they aren’t washing after that, what other activities are they doing without washing their hands, leaving who-knows-what on the surfaces they touch? Societal “norms” MUST change and as a people we must adapt, if not for other peoples’ protection, than certainly for our own! Example: when leaving the ladies room, I always use a napkin or a paper towel to turn the faucet off & open the bathroom door after I’ve washed my hands with soap and water. I am protecting myself.
Having said that, this plan has some positives, but also has some negatives. Perfectly okay for those who have the income and retirement income to stay at home, for businesses to be closed, for life to go on as is. Palm Coast is no longer strictly a retirement community and there are many of us who need to earn an income in one way or another. Not many have savings they can rely on and we know many businesses rely on payments from their patrons to stay open: medical offices, rental offices, restaurants, retail, the list goes on.
How long before these people all say, sorry, no cash no food? No rent, no home? Where’s all that stimulus money then??
Something has to give – we either need to trust or give up. I’m not so certain I’m all that ready to trust, but I sure as heck am not all that ready to give up and hunker down afraid in my room for the next 6 months until someone else decides for me that I can go out.
American Patriots says
What parts of the Constitution don’t these so-called “city leaders” understand?! People’s lives are being ruined. We cannot feed our families, educate our children, or go to church to worship our God. We are in need of medical and dental care that we cannot get. No one wants death, but more people have died with the regular flu than COVID19. Stop trying to create a nanny state and open up the city before you ruin it completely.
If those that think they are in charge want to do something constructive, how about enforcing the laws and regulations that we already have. It is illegal to have nasty-looking trash cans left in view, but the city will not police this and many other laws. They need to fine people for this and having other junk around their house that depreciates the whole neighborhood. This is the worst community we have ever lived in with the high water rates and city officials that will not listen to, or protect, the taxpayers.
They need to make people follow the laws we already have instead of trying to create new ridiculous ones! WE WILL BE VOTING IN NOVEMBER!!
This is a real problem, we need to do more in SCARING THE HELL OUT OF PEOPLE AND CREATING THE PROLONGED FEELING OF DESPAIR BASED ON SPECULATION & POLITICALLY MOTIVATED AGENDAS.
This is exactly what the Liberals and Democrats want, a one world government. Are you people really falling for this?! They want to be in control of what you do and this is exactly what the article sounds like! Enough is enough, and we will put a stop to this!!!
Pissed in PC says
No that’s the republican agenda. Trump wants to be a dictator like his hero’s Putin and Kim Jong Un. Maybe you need to go to law school and learn that government can issue orders for the safety of the people during disasters. This is a pandemic disaster. They can make people wear masks to shop, go to church, or any other public place they deem necessary. Some cities in other states it’s mandatory. No mask, no service. The government has a responsibility to keep everyone safe! That includes high risk and seniors. Masks are affordable. Quit being selfish and think of others instead of just yourself.
Pissed in PC: You don’t need to go to law school to have common sense, if you don’t feel good stay home! In case you need to be reminded we live in the United States of America. If you feel more comfortable wearing a mask then that’s your freedom to do so but don’t force it on anyone else!! Trump is standing up for the people and for the constitution of the United States!! All these other people are trying to take our rights away.
Pissed in PC says
Trump has used the constitution for toilet paper. He’s a fake president that’s in way over his head. But please keep giving your money to the rich and screw everyone else. Morons among us.
Laura B says
Did Palm Coast furlough their economic development department “until Fall”. Noooo. Or how about the tourism council “Palm Coast & the Flagler Beaches” running sponsored Facebook ads these last 2 months while the beaches were F*^*ing closed or the other one promoting our closed parks for CANCELLED sporting events.
City releases like this prove how tone deaf to real business current leaders are and serves as proof why Palm Coast will never have a downtown filled with local business or any real support for the arts or families (like private schools) but instead will-and have- numerous Dollar Stores, McDonald’s & likes of Walmart…. places our Mayor so cynically deems “essential”.
Percy's mother says
After reading the comments posted here, I have only ONE thing to add:
PLEASE, Beam me up Scotty!!!!!
Me again says
WOW, where to start.! In these comments, I keep hearing everyone calling them your city leaders. City leader this, city leader that, why? These are “City followers”! They are simply waiting on instructions, or recommendations on how to handle the next step in this process. A leader will guide, and direct their Community, State, or even their country in a responsible, and well-informed direction for all involved. That is not what we have here! For all you people that want to be led in the direction that your city followers tell you you should go, think about this, you might want to sit down… diseases, bacterias, viruses, and accidents are all around us, at all times, yet somehow, without isolation, social distancing, and face masks, you have lived, at least long enough, to write your comments in this forum. Go figure! Six months ago you would have been complaining about sidewalks, or Landscaping in the median, or someone’s bumper sticking out on the road, now, because your city followers tell you you should be scared, your paranoia has no bounds! How’s all that third-party information working out for you!? Now, for anyone talking about leaving because of all this, let’s face it oh, you’ve been wanting to leave! This town is one big HOA, what brought you here, and for many of us, what will keep us here, is how cheap it is! It’s a transient town that has a higher turn around rate than a Russian basketball team! So I just don’t see a virus, City followers, or politics playing a role in why you want to leave, sounds like an excuse! Our city followers, are they trying? Of course they are, the best they can, but, so does a five-year-old building a sand castle on a public beach! Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t! Our city followers are trying to build that Sandcastle at high tide! Don’t think it’s going to work out for them! As far as the comments in this forum… Wow! This is the first time I have ever seen so many statisticians, doctors, nurses, and politicians in one place! I, for one, will continue doing what I have always done for the last half a century. Live! I have always been responsible for my actions, whether they be good, bad, or ugly! What I haven’t done, is wait for somebody to “tell” me how I should live, where I should live or how long I’m going to live, all in the name of their paranoia. So for all you “better than me’s” out there,get a grip! Realize that these are only comments, and opinions. After all, isn’t that what social media, fake book, and forums are for? Most everyone on here couldn’t bust a grape in Welch’s backyard with bare feet! Your ranting! So for all you paranoid followers out there waiting to be told when to “drink the Kool-Aid”, sip at your own risk! Good luck! Oh, and by the way, did anyone notice the city follower on the left, in the video above, wearing his mask? I’m no doctor, but I’m pretty sure that it is not being worn correctly! If that is the way they expect us to wear them, no thank you, I’ll take my chances. I’m sure your City followers Won’t Let You Down
All I see of late around town, is inconsiderate people, or those that simply don’t care about others. I just can’t wait to hear about one of these ” I don’t wear a mask” types getting extremely ill and infecting a child in their family. There ya go KARMA.