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Tough Questions For Businesses That Want To Reopen

Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said officers are concerned specifically about places where people usually are in close contact such as hair and nail salons.
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Under phase one of the plan announced Wednesday by Governor Ron DeSantis, a number of businesses in Florida will be allowed to reopen Monday. But one analyst says there are still lots of unknowns.

Rob Hooker is an associate professor at the University of South Florida’s Muma College of Business. He says reopening brings risks to workers and business owners alike.  

“Do they have a safe workforce? And how do we know? So there are some things that maybe they want to consider there and some larger sociological issues, perhaps, tied to that as well. How do we certify that people are indeed safe in the workforce, without perhaps violating their privacy," he said.

Restaurants and retail operations will be allowed to operate - but only at 25% capacity. Hooker says that might not be enough for some businesses to turn a profit, so owners might wait until restrictions are relaxed further.  

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Bradley George comes to WUSF from Atlanta, where he was a reporter, host, and editor at Georgia Public Broadcasting. While in Atlanta, he reported for NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and The Takeaway. His work has been recognized by , the Georgia Associated Press, and the Atlanta Press Club. Prior to his time in Georgia, Bradley worked at public radio stations in Tennessee, Alabama, and North Carolina.