ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. (WCJB)-- COVID-19 has had officials in North Central Florida in uncharted territory as they shut down schools and close businesses indefinitely in some cases. In Alachua county today, commissioners met to review the current emergency order that tells people to stay home. Many are adjusting to the change to everyday life.
Drastic changes may be on their way to Alachua County after commissioners met via zoom today to discuss concerns about grocery stores and businesses that violate the order.
Commissioner Hutch Hutchinson said that after the second amendment to the order comes out that he's going to start working on a complete shutdown order if things continue to get worse and the number of confirmed cases rise.
"You know groceries, pharmacies and health care and that's it. Everybody else is home."
Language is being added to provide protections like masks and gloves for grocery store workers.
Some county commissioners think the lines outside are still an issue.
Resident Elizabeth Wilson said, "just passing by I noticed there's a long line." She adds that things have gotten better at grocery stores.
"People are actually really good about being away from each other, if they saw somebody coming down the aisle they kinda waited their turn and let them go. So I didn't really find that that was a problem."
The current occupancy restriction of one person per 1000 square feet will stay the same but commissioners will meet at least once a week to discuss revisions.
While Wilson is stocked up with groceries and feels like people are following the order another resident still has worries.
Tracy Marinello said, "and just the whole not knowing when this is going to end is sort of stressful"
The Alachua County resident added, "especially a couple of weeks ago when this first started there was a lot of people not concerned. You know if you stopped into the local store, people were joking about it. And you know, that added to my stress because I knew this wasn't a joke. It took a while for people to really start paying attention."
Commissioner Hutchinson says the current order is plan "B" and he's working on plan "A" if people don't follow it.
"That more stringent plan is what you would call a complete shut down"
Instead of adding guidelines for each essential business to use to combat COVID-19, the county will use a guide provided by the occupational safety and health administration on protecting people from the virus.