News You Should Know

6 Things to Know – South Florida Gradually Set to Reopen, Lawmakers Want Unemployment Benefits Expanded


It’s Tuesday, April 28th – and NBC 6 has the top stories you need to know for the day.

No. 1 - Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez has announced emergency orders that allows all parks, marinas and golf courses to reopen Wednesday amid the coronavirus pandemic. In a news conference at Tropical Park on Monday, Gimenez said the rules in the emergency order will follow recommendations made by medical experts.

Meanwhile, Broward County will begin a phased re-opening of parks, recreational facilities and other public spaces this week. Mayor Dale V.C. Holness said that due to the region's apparent downward trajectory of COVID-19 infections, South Florida officials were collaborating cross-county to devise a plan that would allow for the reopening of certain places.

No. 2 - Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday the state will reopen from the coronavirus economic shutdown in “baby steps” and that its regions could reopen at different times and rates. 

The governor said that for most people, the reopening's first phase will not be much different than what they are experiencing now with schools and nonessential businesses closed and people being encouraged to stay home. He is expected to begin laying out his plans this week as he reviews recommendations from a task force he appointed that looked at reopening various aspects of the economy. 

No. 3 - According to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, about 40% of unemployment claims have been determined to be ineligible

The DOE sent NBC 6 a statement stating in part, “There are numerous reasons someone could be deemed not eligible for state Reemployment Assistance benefits, including wage base period issues, lack of wage history, among others.”  The DOE also defended their progress with payments despite weeks of glitches with the site, saying they have paid more than $400 million to Floridians who were eligible. 

No. 4 - As South Florida schools require students to work online, parents are having to be extra vigilant of the time kids are spending on the internet. 

Florida State Sen. Lauren Book is a sex abuse advisor and now fights to protect children from online predators. She says one in five children who touch a digital device will be sexually solicited online, a statistic even more scary now with kids online for school. To hear more on what Book and other experts say you should do to keep your kids safe, click here for a report from NBC 6’s Derrick Lewis.

No. 5 - After being offline for several days, the state’s online unemployment portal is again allowing people to log in.

State Senator Jose Javier Rodriguez, along with U.S. Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz and U.S. Representative Kathy Castor are asking for the state Reemployment Assistance to be increased and expanded. Currently, the cap on the state benefits is $275 per week which is among the lowest amounts paid in the country. The benefits can last for up to 12 weeks. Most states allow benefits to last for up to 26 weeks. Under the CARES Act, states are permitted to extend unemployment benefits by up to 13 weeks.

No. 6 - Weatherwise, South Florida will be near perfect on Tuesday with low humidity and temperatures that will make it truly feel like spring. Keep your NBC 6 app handy for push alerts on any severe weather as well as First Alert Doppler 6000.

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