By Joan Murray

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – South Florida is seeing improvement in the number of COVID-19 cases but Broward County leaders are being cautious about lifting restrictions too soon.

On Friday, Broward County Mayor Dale Holness said, “The trend is in the right direction and we feel less pressure.”

Holness said Broward Health is sending back traveling nurses who have been assisting
their hospitals when the pandemic was spiking. He said the Memorial Health System will do the same next week.

Still, Holness admits we are not out of the woods and there is more work ahead.

Friday, he said county code enforcers will start issuing citations to individuals who are not wearing masks in public. The fine is $100.

Holness said the number one complaint is people not wearing masks in restaurants. He says sometimes the staff is in violation.

He said to date Broward County has received 10,000 complaints and issued over 2,500 citations.

Most of the citations were at restaurants according to the mayor. Holness said while there have been some crowds spotted at Broward beaches there has been a decline in the number of ‘private’ parties where no social distancing was in place.

In general, you must wear a mask anytime you are in public but there is confusion.
Broward resident Amy Aristotelous says when she is out half the time people walking down the public are wearing masks, half the time they are not.

She says ‘indoors’ it’s clearer you should wear a mask although in her building there’s often conflict between tenants who wear a mask and those who refuse.

Others refuse to wear a mask altogether. “It’s an absurd response to the virus proven not to be a threat,” maintains Broward’s Samantha Ramen.

In Miami-Dade, they have been fining individuals who are not wearing masks.

The county is getting ready Monday to resume indoor table service at restaurants.

The number of COVID cases has also been on a downward trend there

The Labor Day holiday is approaching and beaches will be open in South Florida and while there is talk of Broward cities extending the time beaches close at night,
there are no plans to further lift restrictions in Broward.

“If we don’t obey the orders the economy is closed for a longer time,” said Mayor Holness