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How will counties enforce new mask mandates?

Most of the responsibility falls on business owners to make sure employees and customers wear a mask inside their business.

TAMPA, Fla. — Florida saw its highest spike in confirmed COVID-19 cases with 5,508 on Wednesday. 

The worrisome trend of recent spikes has county leaders jumping into action to try and help combat further spread of COVID-19. Despite encouraging everyone to wear a mask, Gov. Ron DeSantis said he will leave it up to local governments to decide and not issue a statewide order on wearing a face covering.

Pinellas County commissioners said not wearing a mask would be a "non-criminal violation," meaning you could get a warning, a citation with a fine from $100-500 and if there are repeated violations, then a misdemeanor arrest.

The Hillsborough County Emergency Policy Group released a similar message, specifically writing, "business operators are responsible for ensuring compliance." The business owners are able to deny a person from coming in if they're not wearing a mask. 

RELATED: Coronavirus in Florida: State reports another 5,508 new cases

RELATED: Pinellas County mandates face coverings inside most public buildings

Pasco County leaders declared the responsibility to enforce the new mask mandate also falls on business owners. If they don't enforce these rules in their businesses they could face a fine of up to $250. 

Later in the day on Wednesday, Manatee County commissioners approved a statement endorsing recommendations from state Surgeon General Dr. Scott Rivkees, who urged Floridians to wear a mask when social distancing isn't possible.

The few exceptions being kids under the age of 2 and if masks make a health issue worse from wearing one.

RELATED: Hillsborough County makes masks mandatory inside businesses

RELATED: Florida's surgeon general says all Floridians should wear masks when social distancing isn't possible

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