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Florida governor suspends collection of fines for violating local mask rules

"All outstanding fines and penalties that have been applied against individuals are suspended," Gov. Ron DeSantis said.

Florida does not have a statewide mask mandate, although many local governments have implemented their own restrictions.

While the governor doesn't plan to preempt local rules regarding masks, he is stepping in when it comes to fines. Speaking Friday in St. Petersburg, Gov. Ron DeSantis said all outstanding fines and penalties that have been applied against individuals for failing to follow local mask rules are suspended.

"I think we need to get away from trying to penalize people for social distancing and just work with people constructively," the governor said.

The announcement came in response to a question about masks. The governor said he hopes the state and local governments can work with people in a way that's more collaborative when it comes to encouraging mask use.

The governor's primary announcement Friday was that the state would be moving into Phase 3 of its reopening plan and lifting state-level capacity restrictions on bars and restaurants. Click here to read more about what that means.

RELATED: Gov. DeSantis will lift state-level restaurant and bar capacity restrictions, allow Florida to move to Phase 3 of reopening

RELATED: 14,083 people have died in Florida from COVID-19

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