TAMPA, Fla. — Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister on Wednesday announced the immediate suspension of evictions in the county amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"These decisions, which are essential to stop the spread of coronavirus and protect the health and welfare of everyone, will have a significant impact on how individuals live their lives and provide for themselves and their loved ones," Chronister said.
Chronister said the suspension will remain in place until April 20.
Chronister added that he understands the decision will have a great impact on landlords and property owners, but he asked for understanding and cooperation during the pandemic.
"How do we ask people to shelter in place when we take their shelter from them," Chronister said.
The announcement comes a day after Governor Ron DeSantis announced the closure of all bars and nightclubs in the state for at least 30 days.
DeSantis also announced changes to social distancing guidelines at Florida beaches and an extension of school closures.
The governor said Florida students wouldn't be returning to school until April 15. he also said all required testing remaining for the 2019-2020 school year is canceled.
"All remaining testing for school readiness, voluntary pre-K and K through 12 will be canceled for the school year," DeSantis said during Tuesday's press conference.
"Requirement for graduation and promotion and final course grades will be evaluated as those assessments did not exist," he added.
While some Florida cities are closing their beaches, DeSantis said he’s applying CDC guidelines to all beaches in the state. That means no groups of more than 10 people allowed on beaches, and everyone must stay six feet apart.