Photo courtesy of Gov. Ron DeSantis' Twitter.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a statewide stay-at-home order Wednesday, set to start Friday at 12:01 a.m. — a week after Orange County’s stay-at-home went into effect — and remains in effect until April 30.

“Given the unique situation in Florida, I’m going to be doing an executive order today directing all Floridians to limit movements and personal interactions outside the home to only those necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities … ,” DeSantis said during Wednesday’s press conference.


DeSantis said the state will follow the Department of Homeland Security’s list of essential businesses, and integrate some of Mayor of Miami-Dade Carlos Gimenez’s “Safer at Home” order.

Screenshot of Dept. of Homeland Security’s Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce.

The full executive order can be read here.

Economic Opportunity

He said to lessen the economic damage the state may see over the next 30 days — and to provide economic opportunity — he told the Secretary of Transportation to accelerate the $2.1 billion in transportation projects.

  • Orlando — Sand Lake, International Drive/Universal Boulevard
    • Accelerated by four to six weeks
  • Tampa Bay area — Howard Franklin Bridge Project
    • Accelerated by almost four weeks
    • $864 million project
  • Western Palm Beach County — widening of Southern Boulevard
    • Accelerated by almost three months
  • Miami-Dade — I-395, I-95 Design-Build Project
    • Accelerated by almost four weeks
    • $802 million project

“There’s not cars on the roads like there normally is,” he said. “I think there is an opportunity to take advantage of that. We have roads that if you were to do a lot of construction on would cause massive traffic in normal situations and that may not be the case now.”

Cruise Ships

DeSantis said the counties control the ports where the ships dock — in this case, he said Broward County.

“Clearly, we’re going to be willing to accept any Floridians who are on board,” he said. “My understanding is that most of the passengers are foreign nationals.”

DeSantis said he wants to see the resources Florida has used for residents.

“My concern is simply that we have worked so hard to make sure we have adequate hospital space in the event of a COVID-19 surge that we wouldn’t want those valuable beds to be taken because of the cruise ships,” DeSantis said.

According to the Florida Department of Health’s 6:30 p.m. update, there are 7,773 positive cases of COVID-19 in Florida.

Screenshot of Florida Department of Health’s COVID-19 Dashboard.

Orange County reported 426 positive COVID-19 cases in the latest update, with Orlando reporting 332 of the positive cases.

Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties still lead in positive cases, according to the Florida Department of Health. Those three counties make up just over 55% of Florida’s cases.