Movie theaters, tattoo and massage parlors allowed to reopen in Pinellas County

Posted at 8:29 PM, May 18, 2020

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. -- Pinellas County leaders are giving movie theaters, tattoo shops and massage parlors the green light to reopen.

The announcement on Monday comes as all of Florida is under "Full Phase 1" of Governor Ron DeSantis' plan to reopen Florida.

In the current iteration of Gov. DeSantis' plan, gyms, hair and nail salons are allowed to reopen but the state order does not have movie theaters reopening.

But in Pinellas County's "Additional Guidance for Phase 1 Reopening" order, movie theaters, concert halls, auditoriums, bowling alleys, arcades, playhouses, and casinos are allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity.

Pinellas County added in its order that the only businesses that can not yet reopen are bars, pubs and nightclubs that "derive more than 50% gross revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages."

Video from last Thursday captured a shutdown standoff between a Pinellas County deputy and Atomic Tattoos owner Clay Montgomery.

"He asked if there was anything he could do to persuade me to close and I told him that since my staff had gotten no help, the only thing that would stop me is taking me to jail," said Montgomery.

ABC Action News has heard from tattoo artists from across Tampa Bay, many complaining they were wrongly left out of the state's plan as barbers and salons were allowed to reopen last week.

"I feel like we got overlooked," said Montgomery. "I think it was an oversight on the government’s side."

Jaclyn Bergantino, owner of The Ivy Fine Art and Tattoo in Largo, said Monday's announcement is a major relief for her industry.

"It’s our grand opening all over again," said Bergantino. "We’re super excited."

Below is the full list of Pinellas County-based businesses that are allowed to reopen under certain restrictions:

Below is the list of businesses allowed to reopen in the state of Florida:

According to a spokesperson with the Tampa Police Department, tattoo shops in Tampa are to remain closed.