Businesses violating the COVID-19 order beware: the Gainesville City Commission revealed its new order violation tracker Thursday.
The online dashboard will use mapping technology so residents can track businesses’ current and former violations and inspections, said City Manager Lee Feldman. The order requires residents to wear face masks where social distancing is not possible and for businesses to post signs about the requirement.
Violations, complaints and warnings will be uploaded to the map in real time, said Assistant City Manager Dan Hoffman. Red dots on the tracker represent active violations, or reported complaints from the 311 hotline. The map has two layers: a historical layer dating back to March and a current inspections layer.
The city also developed an app for code enforcement officers to use to appropriately address violations based on a business’ history, Hoffman said.
Code enforcers have made more than 10,500 routine business inspections since March 16, Feldman said. Many enforcers have also stood in front of businesses to encourage residents to wear masks. They’ve made 6,177 contacts with residents, Feldman said. All residents wore masks except 15 who claimed a medical exemption and another 11 who refused and were issued warnings.
Feldman said he doesn’t have information about how many citations were issued to order violations.
About 80,000 masks were also distributed on RTS buses, Feldman added. Sanitization stations are available on the buses, and drivers now have plexiglass dividing them from riders.
The city is also collaborating with UF to find ways for bars and restaurants to move gatherings outdoors, Feldman said. The goal is to avoid students going to indoor gatherings like house and fraternity parties, where spreading COVID-19 is more likely.
“We have to recognize that students are students, and they will go somewhere,” Feldman said.