This morning Okaloosa County Board of Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution to reopen the county beaches 6:30AM - 9:00AM in the morning and 4:30PM - 7:00PM afternoons starting May 1, 2020. “We gotta start somewhere and I think it’s time to make a move.”, stated Commissioner Kelly Windes, after proposing opening the county beaches for everyone next month.
Following the anticipated actions of surrounding counties and states heavily weighed the commission’s decision. Carolyn Ketchel said she will go along with reopening the beaches for financial and political reasons but from a health standpoint, she has “grave issues” with the decision.
After initially proposing using a three-phase approach to reopen county beaches, it was decided starting with limited hours would discourage vacationers from traveling to the area. The decision will be reviewed for changes and improvements at next week’s meeting.
The Florida state "Safer at Home" directive and vacation rental ban is still in effect until April 30th.
We are now waiting for the City of Destin's vote on if they will follow suite with the County. That vote is still pending.