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Decision to Open Palm Beach County Beaches Happening Later Today

Posted by Gerald Lombardo on Friday, May 8th, 2020 at 8:00am.

The Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners are holding a special meeting Friday morning. Commissioners will discuss a plan to reopen beaches in Palm Beach County.

They will also consider how to spend $261 million dollars awarded to the county by the federal government as part of the $2 trillion relief package.

"We have many miles of beaches on our eastern coast. It stands all the way from the Broward County line all the way up to Highland Beach," Boca Raton City Councilman Andy Thomson said.

On March 20, Gov. Ron DeSantis ordered all beaches in Palm Beach County to close.

Thomson thinks Boca Raton has to be careful in its approach to allowing people back on beaches.

"Given our proximity to Broward and in particular Dade too, given how nice our beaches, are we have to be very careful we don't get inundated by a surge of people wanting to go out and enjoy the beach," Thomson said.

Thomson believes the city can regulate the number of people on the beaches by limiting parking spaces.

"Spanish River Park and Red Reef Park where that is the vast majority of parking for people who are going to go use those beaches. And the plan, I think, is for us to have those parking facilities in those parks closed. And that will, I think, will be able to minimize the number of people," he said.

According to county documents, when Palm Beach County does decide to reopen beach access, commissioners are looking at restrictions in place for what you can bring to the beach.

Beach access would be geared toward exercise, including activities such as walking, swimming, fishing and surfing. Items like chairs, blankets and coolers would be prohibited, so no sunbathing would be allowed.

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