Last Week’s Unemployment Numbers In: Nearly 4 Million More Americans Filed 

Yesterday, the Department of Labor announced that 3.8 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits within the last week. The previous week saw a total of 4.4. million filers. Florida was the state with the most new claims: 326,000. See the report here.  

Governor DeSantis: Parks to Reopen 

Governor DeSantis has announced that state parks will reopen on Monday along with the nonessential businesses allowed to reopen at reduced capacity as part of “Phase 1” of his reopening plan. Local parks also continue to be reopened. Polk County parks, preserves, and trails reopened today. Social distancing recommendations remain in place and large gatherings remain discouraged. Hillsborough County preserves will reopen Saturday and some parks and trails will reopen on Monday.  

Remote Meetings Remain an Option for Local Governments  

As part of the “Phase 1” reopening order, Governor DeSantis is continuing to allow local governments to meet remotely. The governor’s March 20 order initially provided local government bodies with an exception to the requirement that they meet in person.  

Hillsborough County Ends Stay-at-Home Order 

Yesterday, the Hillsborough Emergency Policy Group voted to bring an end to its stay-at-home order. The order will officially expire on Monday when Governor DeSantis’ “Phase 1” Reopening Plan comes into effect. The local state of emergency was extended by an additional week.  

Baseball Fans: Rays Tickets Can Be Refunded 

Yesterday, the Tampa Bay Rays announced that fans will be able to obtain a refund or credit for games from March through May. Those who opt for a credit will receive an extra 25% for concessions or merchandise. Those who want a refund must request one by May 8 or will receive the credit. More details can be found here

Updated Numbers   

There have now been 34,728 cases throughout the state of Florida and 1,314 deaths. In Duval County, there have been 1,025 cases and 22 deaths. In Hillsborough County, there have been 1,163 cases and 24 deaths. In Orange County, there have been 1,413 cases and 34 deaths. In Pasco County, there have been 252 cases and 8 deaths. In Pinellas County, there have been 707 cases and 38 deaths. In Polk County, there have been 500 cases and 24 deaths. For updated data, visit:  




Florida Department of Health:    

U.S. Chamber of Commerce:    

Florida Chamber of Commerce: 

Tampa Chamber of Commerce: 

Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce: 
Lakeland Chamber of Commerce: 

St. Pete Chamber of Commerce: