Navigating Through COVID-19--As a Village
Thursday, April 16, 2020
COVID-19 - Your Thursday Update
Good Afternoon, VKB Residents,
Today is Thursday, April 16, 2020 and we are in week five of the Village of Key Biscayne's COVID-19 Response.
We all need to do our part as we continue to work together
Individual decisions about “essential services” have a collective impact upon all of us. That is why we are asking each—and every—resident to truly evaluate what services and whose help is really essential to you. The personal decisions you make as to who comes into our community affects the community as a whole. Could you do without certain services? Could you utilize them less often? Do you really need to go outside of your home or property? We have heard from you, our residents, that you want us, your government, to limit the amount of people coming onto our island. We have been exercising our governmental authority, but much of that responsibility is in your hands. Please, do your part. We ask you to think about your loved ones and neighbors who may be more vulnerable to this virus, even if their underlying immune system vulnerability is invisible to the naked eye. If we all work together, then we can succeed together.
Every day the Village of Key Biscayne Incident Command practices the same response priorities:
- To exercise an abundance of caution to PROTECT our community: Our number one priority is to protect the health and safety of everyone in the Village of Key Biscayne.
- To continue to COMMUNICATE Village-wide efforts at containing the spread of the virus: We strive to deliver updated information to maintain awareness and public readiness, and to combat misinformation.
- To take necessary ACTION to keep the Village of Key Biscayne safe and healthy. Our primary goal is to encourage Village residents to engage in behavior that limits the spread of the virus.
COVID-19 Pilot Drive-Thru Testing Site
After much work and a collaborative effort between the Village of Key Biscayne and the Key Biscayne Community Foundation, a COVID-19 pilot drive-thru testing site for Key Biscayne residents was established earlier this week.
The purpose of the pilot drive-thru testing site is fourfold: to meet expectations of our community, help residents as a public service, inform policy decisions and steer response efforts, including ways to mitigate and control the spread of the virus.
On Tuesday morning the pilot drive-thru testing site at St. Agnes Catholic Church opened for eligible Key Biscayne residents, by appointment only. Upon arrival at St. Agnes, residents were greeted by an officer from the Key Biscayne Police Department, personnel from the Key Biscayne Community Center and/or the Key Biscayne Community Foundation, and guided to proceed through the pilot drive-thru test collection site.
To make an appointment and find out if you are eligible for COVID-19 testing, residents should visit the Foundation’s testing portal at kbcovidtesting.org and complete the application. This portal was created to facilitate the COVID-19 testing process on Key Biscayne. Submission of the application form does not guarantee a test. Residents will be contacted via email for an appointment, if you qualify.
If residents have COVID-19 related questions and wish to speak to someone, the Village of Key Biscayne COVID-19 Call Center (305-365-8910) is up and running Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Within the last 72 hours, we received 383 total requests for COVID-19 testing and we have been able to test 149 residents. In the coming days we will test the remaining 234 residents and additional eligible residents. Due to the increased availability of local testing, residents should expect to see a corresponding increase in reported positive cases, which will be reflected in future State FDOH reports.
Current Village of Key Biscayne COVID-19 Status
The Chart above illustrates current number of positive cases on Key Biscayne, from Florida Division of Emergency Management's daily COVID-19 Data Reports.
Village of Key Biscayne Cases as Percentage of the Population
The chart above compares Village of Key Biscayne's COVID-19 Cases with other Florida communities.
Cases on the Key
Case numbers are provided by the Florida Department of Health. We are aware of challenges to the integrity of the FDOH data. As we have been stating, data in their reports are provisional and subject to change. As we learn more about the issue, we will act accordingly. As of 10:00 a.m. today, the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) report indicates 59 positive COVID-19 cases on the Key. Data in this report are provisional and subject to change.
- We do not receive personal information about i3nfected residents from the Department of Health.
- Click here for the latest FDOH data. The above graphs reflect data from these reports.
Key Biscayne Fire Rescue Team is Resilient
Our Key Biscayne Fire Rescue team was prepared for last week’s impact, when firefighter paramedics were tested and isolated due to potential COVID-19 exposure. KBFR responded to the impact responsibly following health authority protocol. As Village family, the Fire Rescue team cared for 10 of their team members. Key Biscayne Fire Rescue core and COVID-19 incident services were not interrupted. Safety drives the COVID-19 mission and our KBFR team is driven by their capacity for resilience and renewal in the face of unprecedented challenges affecting our community. All Key Biscayne Fire Rescue members, who were tested and isolated, are healthy, prepared and cleared for duty. We are thankful for the community’s support and concern for Key Biscayne’s frontline responders.
Construction Site Compliance
Five construction sites were shut down because of noncompliance with the Village's Emergency Order 20-5, which required workers to wear protective gear consistent with industry standards. Our Code Compliance officer along with KBPD officers enforced the cease and desist order that shut down the sites. This is a good example of #ItTakesAVillage. Residents saw something and said something, helping to inform the Village of noncompliance and the results are a perfect example of what happens when we all work together.
If you are outside of your home, we encourage you to wear a facial covering. If you are entering an Essential Business you must wear a facial covering while inside.
The Village Manager executed Emergency Order 20-6 effective 8:00 a.m. Monday, April 13, 2020, in effect through Sunday, May 3, 2020.
Emergency Order 20-6 Mandates facial covering for employees and customers at all times while inside Essential Businesses.
Emergency Order 20-6 Encourages facial covering for all persons that are outside of their homes.
Remember, the general public should not acquire or utilize N95 or equivalent/higher rated masks, as those are critical supplies for health care workers, police, fire, emergency management, or other persons engaged in life/safety activities.
Effective April 9, 2020, persons working in or visiting grocery stores, restaurants, pharmacies, construction sites, public transit vehicles, vehicles for hire, and locations where social distancing measures are not possible shall wear facial coverings as defined by the CDC.
Filing for Reemployment
The Florida Reemployment Assistance Application can be found on the State’s website, from which it can be printed and mailed to: The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity at P.O. Box 5350 in Tallahassee, FL 32314-5350. It will take longer for the state to process paper applications than electronic ones, but this option bypasses the overloaded website server.
- The application is available to download in Spanish, Creole and English.
- All FedEx locations are offering to print an unemployment application for you and mail it, free of charge.
It Takes a Village
Watch the lovely video above from KBPD. We love our Village of Key Biscayne community and we are here for you during these strange times, just as we always have been. Thank you for your cooperation and adherence to the new rules. As you can see in the video, our beaches and communal gathering spaces are empty. Our beautiful island community will get through this difficult time. We are all in this together, or to quote The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, “all for one and one for all, united we stand divided we fall.”
Village of Key Biscayne Department Updates:
Key Biscayne Police Department:
See Something, Say Something
Public safety is one of the core pillars of our community. We encourage you to join the Village in our efforts to keep Key Biscayners home and safe #KBStayHome. If you see someone not practicing social distance, please report it to KBPD by calling (305) 365-5555. Failure to follow Emergency Orders puts us all at greater risk. #ItTakesAVillage
Building, Planning and Zoning/Public Works Department:
Permit Applications Allowed
The Village of Key Biscayne’s Building, Zoning and Planning Department will be allowing new permit applications for emergency repairs. To learn how the Department is currently operating and to learn more about new permits being issued at this time click here. To open the Building Application Permit form click here.
- Applications (with licenses/insurance) along with plan in .pdf form should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Payments can be accepted over the phone. Permit Clerk will contact customer when ready to obtain credit card information.
Connecting to Sanitary Sewer
The Department of Environmental Resources (DERM) is intending to grant an extension to the deadline to abandon septic and connect to sanitary sewer. DERM is still determining how long the deadline should be extended. We will let residents know what their determination is for the extended deadline when that information becomes available.
Did you know that Miami-Dade County has permanent water restrictions? Click here to view the guidelines.
From the Village of Key Biscayne Horticulturist
Watch Episode 2 of “My Backyard” on the Village’s YouTube channel. If you missed Episode 1, you can watch it here.