MIAMI (CBSMiami) – With the rising number of positive coronavirus cases in Miami-Dade, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez says he’s alarmed by the dramatic increase.

Suarez appeared on ABC “This Week” on Sunday to talk about the growing number of cases in his city.

“Well, it’s clear that the growth is exponential at this point. You know we’ve been breaking record after record after record all in the last couple of weeks. We instituted about a week ago a mask in public rule and we also increased the severity of penalties for businesses that don’t follow the rules,” he said.

Suarez pointed out the county closed down the beaches for the July 4th weekend in the hopes that all these rules will have a positive impact.

“It takes a little bit of time to find out exactly but we’re obviously very closely monitoring hospitalizations and we’re very, very closely monitoring the death rate, which are lagging indicators that give us the impression that we have to take much stricter, much stricter measures,” he said.

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  • The mayor was then asked about how residents are reacting to the new restrictions.

    “They’ve been, obviously, they’re a little bit upset to some extent, but we’ve seen compliance, at least in Miami-Dade County. I know that there are maybe other places where there haven’t been perfect compliance but we seem to have seen compliance over the weekend. So we’re hopeful that the measures that we’re putting into place will prevent us from having to put in more dramatic measures over the course of this week,” he said.

    “You said the city mandated face coverings in public on June 25th with fines to enforce it. But how does that work? And have any fines been issued,” asked host Martha Raddatz.

    ‘Yes, you know the way it works is, it’s similar to when we did a stay at home order. You know, we don’t actually go door to door and knock on people’s homes,” he said.

    “In terms of enforcement, you know, we — we have a — the first violation is a warning. The second violation is a $50 fine, then $150, and a $500 fine. You know, we still haven’t done massive amounts of enforcement, but we’re hoping to see if people comply. And, if not, we’re going to have to go out there and do that enforcement,” he added.

    On Sunday, the state’s health department reported there were an additional 2,282 positive cases in Miami-Dade for a total of 47,011 cases. There were 5 new deaths for a total of 1,043. The overall percentage of positive tests for the county is 13.2 percent which is above the target range.

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