Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 210576
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File Number: 210576 File Type: Resolution Status: Amended
Version: 0 Reference: Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: RESOLUTION RELATED TO COVID-19 Introduced: 3/9/2021
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action:
Agenda Date: 3/16/2021 Agenda Item Number: 11A14
Notes: SEE 210857 FOR FINAL VERSION AS ADOPTED. ALSO SEE 210476 Title: RESOLUTION RELATED TO THE CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19); DIRECTING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO: (I) STUDY THE FEASIBILITY OF PROCURING AND USING ROBOTICS TO STERILIZE COUNTY FACILITIES AND USING GENOMIC TESTING TO TRACK COVID-19 REINFECTION RATES AND VARIANT PREVALENCE, (II) ESTABLISH A CALL CENTER AND TEXTING SERVICE FOR COUNTY RESIDENTS TO OBTAIN INFORMATION REGARDING COVID-19 AND VACCINATION, (III) PROCURE COVID-19 DETECTING CANINES AND DEVELOP A PLAN FOR THE DEPLOYMENT OF SUCH CANINES AT COUNTY FACILITIES, AND (IV) PROVIDE FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH TRUST; DIRECTING THE PUBLIC HEALTH TRUST TO, WHERE AUTHORIZED BY LAW AND SUBJECT TO FUNDING LIMITATIONS, CONDUCT COVID-19 EDUCATION AND OUTREACH CAMPAIGNS AMONG ITS PATIENTS AND FOR COUNTY RESIDENTS; URGING THE FEDERAL AND STATE GOVERNMENTS TO PROVIDE ADDITIONAL VACCINE SUPPLY TO MIAMI-DADE COUNTY; URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE AND THE FLORIDA GOVERNOR TO RESCIND THE PORTION OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 20-244 LIMITING THE ABILITY OF THE COUNTY TO COLLECT FINES AND PENALTIES FROM INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE VIOLATED ANY COUNTY EMERGENCY ORDER; DIRECTING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO BROADCAST MESSAGES REGARDING COVID-19 VACCINATIONS; AND REQUIRING REPORTS [SEE ORIGINAL ITEM UNDER FILE NO. 210476]
Indexes: NONE
Sponsors: Kionne L. McGhee, Prime Sponsor
  Oliver G. Gilbert, III, Co-Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
  Danielle Cohen Higgins, Co-Sponsor
  Jean Monestime, Co-Sponsor
  Rebeca Sosa, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 3/16/2021 11A14 Amended
REPORT: See Agenda Item 11A14 Amended, Legislative File Number 210857, for the amended version.

Office of the Chairperson 3/12/2021 Scrivener's Errors
REPORT: The history line to this item indicating that the BCC Chair placed this item on the agenda pursuant to ordinance no. 20-38 was inadvertently placed on the agenda. The Chairman did not use authority pursuant to ordinance no. 20-38 to place this item on the agenda. The history line has been removed.

Health, Emergency Mgmt & Intergov. Affairs Cmte 3/9/2021 2A AMENDED Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation with committee amendment(s) 3/16/2021 P
REPORT: The members of the Health, Emergency Management and Intergovernmental Affairs Committee (HEMIC) amended this resolution to exclude section 9 and add language to have the County Administration use available resources to establish a campaign to promote throughout Miami-Dade County the administration of vaccinations. SPECIAL NOTE: The Clerk of the Board received an e-mail from the County Attorney’s Office regarding the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) Chairman Jose “Pepe” Diaz’s approval of the request to waive the Board’s Rules of Procedure to allow the foregoing proposed resolution to be heard at the County Commission meeting scheduled for March 16, 2021.

County Attorney 3/9/2021 Assigned David M. Murray 3/9/2021

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION RELATED TO THE CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19); DIRECTING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO: (I) STUDY THE FEASIBILITY OF PROCURING AND USING ROBOTICS TO STERILIZE COUNTY FACILITIES AND USING GENOMIC TESTING TO TRACK COVID-19 REINFECTION RATES AND VARIANT PREVALENCE, (II) ESTABLISH A CALL CENTER AND TEXTING SERVICE FOR COUNTY RESIDENTS TO OBTAIN INFORMATION REGARDING COVID-19 AND VACCINATION, (III) PROCURE COVID-19 DETECTING CANINES AND DEVELOP A PLAN FOR THE DEPLOYMENT OF SUCH CANINES AT COUNTY FACILITIES, AND (IV) PROVIDE FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH TRUST; DIRECTING THE PUBLIC HEALTH TRUST TO, WHERE AUTHORIZED BY LAW AND SUBJECT TO FUNDING LIMITATIONS, CONDUCT COVID-19 EDUCATION AND OUTREACH CAMPAIGNS AMONG ITS PATIENTS AND FOR COUNTY RESIDENTS; URGING THE FEDERAL AND STATE GOVERNMENTS TO PROVIDE ADDITIONAL VACCINE SUPPLY TO MIAMI-DADE COUNTY; URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE AND THE FLORIDA GOVERNOR TO RESCIND THE PORTION OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 20-244 LIMITING THE ABILITY OF THE COUNTY TO COLLECT FINES AND PENALTIES FROM INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE VIOLATED ANY COUNTY EMERGENCY ORDER; DIRECTING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO BROADCAST MESSAGES REGARDING COVID-19 VACCINATIONS; AND REQUIRING REPORTS

BODY

WHEREAS, the 2019 novel coronavirus, called SARS-CoV-2, caused an outbreak of illness (COVID-19) that began in December 2019 and quickly spread throughout the world; and
WHEREAS, on January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a global health emergency and later declared it a pandemic; and

WHEREAS, on March 1, 2020, Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order No. 20-51, directing the State Health Officer and Surgeon General to declare a public health emergency in the State of Florida and directing the State Health Officer to take any action necessary to protect the public health; and
WHEREAS, on March 9, 2020, Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order No. 20-52, declaring a state of emergency for the State of Florida due to COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, on March 11, 2020, the Mayor of Miami-Dade County declared a state of emergency for Miami-Dade County as a result of COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, these orders have since been extended; and
WHEREAS, COVID-19 remains an ongoing threat to Miami-Dade County residents; and
WHEREAS, Miami-Dade County has suffered more COVID-19 cases, and more COVID-19 deaths, than any other county in Florida; and
WHEREAS, ensuring that the virus is controlled locally is of critical importance to the future of Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, there are numerous actions which can be taken to ensure local control of the virus; and
WHEREAS, the County can invest in tools to limit the spread of the disease, which include the procurement of dogs that have been trained to detect COVID-19 by smelling infected persons, which are currently being used to screen entrants into American Airlines Arena, and which could be deployed by the County to screen entrants at Miami International Airport, the Port of Miami, and other County facilities with extensive public utilization or which otherwise present unique risks related to COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, the County can also invest in autonomous robots with the capability of killing pathogens such as COVID-19 in the air and on surfaces through high-intensity ultraviolet UV-C wavelength light, which are currently used at Key West International Airport to sterilize its terminals overnight and which could be applied to Miami International Airport, the Seaport, and other County facilities; and
WHEREAS, continuing to educate the community with respect to availability of resources and measures to protect themselves can help individual residents make better choices to keep their families safe; and
WHEREAS, the County does not currently have a single point of contact for residents with questions regarding the pandemic, which could include questions as to testing or vaccine availability, questions about symptoms, questions about the virus, or questions about County responses to the pandemic; and
WHEREAS, establishing a single phone number where residents can get answers to these questions will assist residents in protecting themselves and other residents; and
WHEREAS, additional outreach and education can be performed by the Public Health Trust (“Trust”), Miami-Dade County’s most vital health care resource, which operates the Jackson Health System, including Jackson Memorial Hospital, Jackson North Medical Center and Jackson South Medical Center; and
WHEREAS, it is the mission of the Trust to build the health of the community by providing a single, high standard of quality health care for the residents of Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, the Trust can use its relationships with its patients to encourage vaccination, to provide follow-up to infected individuals, and to provide medical advice to the community; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 25A-4(j) of the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida (the “Code”), the Trust shall comply with any Commission directive, as set forth from time to time by resolution of the Commission; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 25A-4(b)(4) of the Code, if any such directive will result in a financial impact to the Trust, then this Board shall provide County funding to the Trust for implementation of and compliance with the directive for the period of time necessary for implementation or compliance; and
WHEREAS, enhancing the County’s understanding of local conditions will also assist in recovery, especially as there is still much about COVID-19 that is not understood; and
WHEREAS, for example, it is critical to know which COVID-19 variants are prevalent locally, which can only be determined by genomic testing; and
WHEREAS, it is unclear how long persons who have recovered from COVID-19 enjoy immunity to the disease, or whether or not any variants are more capable of reinfecting recovered persons; and
WHEREAS, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests laboratory testing, particularly the genomic sequencing of paired specimens from each infection episode, as a means of investigating possible reinfection with SARS-CoV-2; and
WHEREAS, additional information about the nature and extent of reinfection with SARS-CoV-2 could inform Miami-Dade County’s ongoing COVID-19 response efforts; and
WHEREAS, the County could utilize additional assistance by the Federal and state governments in ending the crisis; and
WHEREAS, vaccines are a critical resource to contain the spread of COVID-19, but presently only a limited supply is available; and
WHEREAS, in December 2020, the United States Food and Drug Administration issued Emergency Use Authorizations for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for individuals 16 years of age and older, and for the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for individuals 18 years of age and older; and
WHEREAS, the allocation of vaccine supplies both as between states and intrastate is controlled by the federal government and Governor DeSantis, respectively; and
WHEREAS, additional vaccine supplies for Miami-Dade County are needed, as Miami-Dade County continues to have the highest rates of COVID-19 infections in the state, and in the nation; and
WHEREAS, in light of these rates of infections, the County should also be allowed to utilize its police powers to enforce local masking and social distancing requirements, which may be necessary locally due to the unique spread of disease in Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, on September 25, 2020, Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order Number 20-244, directing, in Section 4, that the collection of fines and penalties associated with COVID-19 enforcement on individuals be suspended during the State of Florida’s declared COVID-19 state of emergency; and 
WHEREAS, the Miami-Dade County Home Rule Amendment expressly authorizes the County to pass ordinances relating to the affairs, property and government of Dade County and provide suitable penalties for the violation thereof; and
WHEREAS, Executive Order 20-244 does not prohibit the issuance of fines or penalties on businesses or individuals associated with COVID-19 enforcement, but merely delays the collection of such fines and penalties until the expiration of Executive Order 20-244 or the State of Florida’s COVID-19 State of Emergency; and
WHEREAS, this Board believes that the ability to timely collect fines and penalties from individuals is a critical element in ensuring compliance with local ordinances and emergency orders necessary to stem the spread of this deadly pandemic; and  
WHEREAS, this Board believes that the suspension of the collection of fines and penalties in Executive Order Number 20-244 needlessly impedes upon the ability of local governments to adjust rules and restrictions necessary to combat the COVID-19 pandemic in their local jurisdictions; and 
WHEREAS, this Board believes that the suspension of the collection of fines and penalties in Executive Order Number 20-244 may increase the risk to the health and safety of Miami-Dade County residents and visitors by preventing the County from timely enforcing necessary COVID-19 restrictions on individuals; and
WHEREAS, the suspension of the collection of fines and penalties in Executive Order Number 20-244 violates the spirit of the Miami-Dade County Home Rule Amendment to the Florida  Constitution which should be liberally construed to grant local government control of local affairs; and
WHEREAS, this Board desires to provide for the continuing health, safety and well-being of the residents of Miami-Dade County,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that:
Section 1. This Board adopts the foregoing recitals as if fully set forth herein.



Section 2. This Board directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to examine the use of artificial intelligence or robotics to assist in preventing the spread of COVID-19 by disinfecting County airports, seaports, and all points of travel. This Board further directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to provide a report to this Board with the results of said examination.
Section 3. This Board directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to take all appropriate actions to procure dogs trained to detect COVID-19 positive persons, and to develop and implement a plan for deployment of dogs trained to detect COVID-19 positive persons at Miami International Airport, the Port of Miami, and other County facilities with extensive public utilization or which otherwise present unique risks related to COVID-19.
Section 4. This Board directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to examine the feasibility of implementing procedures to study COVID-19 reinfection rates in Miami-Dade County through use of genomic sequencing or other testing of specimens and by using other legally available means to collect and analyze data, and to provide a report. Such report shall indicate, at a minimum, the capability of Miami-Dade County to retain specimens and perform genomic sequencing or other testing to investigate COVID-19 reinfection countywide, as well as the costs of doing so.
Section 5. This Board directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to create a COVID-19 call center and texting service whereby Miami-Dade residents can obtain information regarding COVID-19. In creating the call center and texting service, the Mayor or Mayor’s designees shall consider, at a minimum, the feasibility of : (1) service staff able to provide residents with information related to COVID-19, including general symptoms associated with the COVID-19 virus, the County’s general COVID-19 policies and procedures, locations within the County offering the COVID-19 vaccines, the methods available to set an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine, and lodging options for residents who are seeking to quarantine; (2) staffing the call center and texting service with retired and active healthcare professionals; (3) staffing the call center with medical students and volunteers; and (4) Miami-Dade County residents being able to use the call center and texting service by dialing 311 or a different three digit number.
Section 6. This Board directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to provide a report on the actions referenced in Section 5 above. In addition to addressing the considerations required in Section 5 above, such report shall also include, at a minimum, an analysis of: (a) the required costs to create a COVID-19 call center and texting service including, but not limited to, equipment, and staffing costs; (b) the available funding source(s) to create the call center and texting service; and (c) the time frame needed to begin operating the call center and texting service.
Section 7. This Board urges the federal and state governments to provide additional vaccine supply to Miami-Dade County and to distribution sites within Miami-Dade County.
Section 8. This Board urges the Florida Legislature and Governor Ron DeSantis to rescind Section 4 of Executive Order 20-244 which suspends the collection of fines and penalties associated with COVID-19 enforcement upon individuals until the expiration of Executive Order 20-244 or the State of Florida COVID-19 State of Emergency.
[[Section 9. This Board hereby authorizes the County Attorney to pursue or defend any lawsuits the County Attorney deems necessary to defend Miami-Dade County’s home rule authority related to the authority of the Board of County Commissioners to provide suitable penalties for the violation of County Ordinances as set forth in the Florida Constitution.]]1
Section >>9.<<[[10.]] This Board directs the Public Health Trust to: (1) take all legally available measures to contact persons who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for available vaccine appointments at Public Health Trust designated facilities; (2) educate the public on the efficacy and availability of the COVID-19 vaccine countywide; (3) take all legally available measures to contact persons who have tested positive for COVID-19 for purposes of educational outreach; and (4) take all actions necessary to carry out the purposes of this resolution. The Public Health Trust shall cease carrying out the foregoing directives when any legally available funds allocated pursuant to section 11 below of this resolution are unavailable or otherwise exhausted.
Section >>10.<<[[11.]]. This Board directs the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to: (1) take all actions necessary to achieve the purpose of section 10 above; and (2) allocate and use legally available funds to achieve the purpose of section 10 above to the maximum extent possible.
Section >>11.<<[[12.]] This Board directs the Public Health Trust, together with the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee, to provide a written report regarding section 10 above to this Board. Such report shall update this Board on the progress and achievements of the directives set forth in this resolution and shall include, at a minimum: (1) the number of eligible persons who have been contacted for available COVID-19 vaccination appointments; (2) the means of educating the public on the efficacy and availability of the COVID-19 vaccine countywide; (3) the measures taken to contact persons who have tested positive for COVID-19 for purposes of educational outreach and the number of persons contacted; and (4) how much funding has been allocated and expended to achieve the directives set forth in this resolution.


Section >>12<<[[13]]. This Board directs the County’s state lobbyists to advocate for the legislative or other action set forth in sections 7 and 8 above, and authorizes and directs the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to amend the 2021 State Legislative Package to include this item.
Section >>13.<<[[14.]] This Board directs the County’s federal lobbyists to advocate for the legislative or other action set forth in section 7 above, and authorizes and directs the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to amend the 2021 federal legislative package to include this item.
Section >>14.<<[[15]] This Board directs the Clerk of the Board to transmit a certified copy of this resolution to the President of the United States, the Members of the Florida Congressional Delegation, the Governor, Senate President, and House Speaker of the State of Florida, the Chair and Members of the Miami-Dade County State Legislative Delegation, and the Secretary of the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
Section>>15.<<[[16.]] Unless otherwise specified herein, all reports required by this resolution shall be provided to this Board within 30 days of the effective date of this resolution, and shall be placed on an agenda of the Board pursuant to Ordinance No. 14-65.
>>Section 16. The County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee is directed to use internal media resources currently available to the County, such as MDTV and other County controlled media sources, to broadcast messages encouraging COVID-19 vaccination and providing information on vaccine and testing availability.<<


1 Committee amendments are indicated as follows: Words stricken through and/or [[double bracketed]] are deleted, words underscored and/or >>double arrowed<< are added.



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