End to Florida’s State of Emergency Declaration
Steven R. Braten, Shareholder
Michael H. Casanover, Senior Associate
Paula S. Marra, Senior Associate
Florida’s COVID-19 state of emergency ended on Saturday June 26, 2021.
As many of you are aware, on March 9, 2020, Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-52 which declared a state of emergency for the entire state due to COVID-19. This Executive Order was extended several times, most recently by Executive Order Number 21-94. However, Executive Order 21-94 only extended the state of emergency for sixty days from April 27, 2021. The sixtieth day was Saturday June 26, 2021 and was not renewed by the Governor.
What does this mean for my association?
Since Florida is no longer under a state of emergency per Executive Order 20-52, your association may not avail itself of its emergency powers granted by Sections 718.1265, 719.128, or 720.316, Florida Statutes. The likely major impact for your association is that it may not conduct meetings exclusively through Zoom, or another electronic meeting platform. Rather, meetings will again have to take place at a designated location with owners having the option to attend in person. This does not preclude associations from offering owners the option of attending board and committee meetings via an electronic meeting platform. It just simply means that you have to offer both options if you wish to continue using an electronic meeting platform. Likewise, for members’ meetings, associations will need to resume utilizing a designated location to conduct such meetings.
Senate Bill 630, which goes into effect on July 1, 2021, authorizes community associations to conduct meetings exclusively via a digital platform only during a declared state of emergency. Therefore, your association likely cannot conduct meetings exclusively by telephone or videoconferencing in the absence of a declared state of emergency.
Please contact your community association’s attorney for questions on how the end of the state of emergency will impact your meetings and future operations.