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The Villages
Saturday, May 8, 2021

3 more local COVID-19 deaths as DeSantis kills local emergency mandates

On the day when three more local residents lost their battle with COVID-19 and 41 more virus-related fatalities were reported across Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an order putting an end to all local Coronavirus emergency orders put in place across the Sunshine State.

All three of the latest local fatalities were in Marion County. They are among the 1,866 deaths across the tri-county area, the 36,009 in Florida and the 577,402 across the country since the pandemic hit the United States in March 2020, statistics provided by the Florida Department of Health and Johns Hopkins University show.

Gov. Ron DeSantis ends local COVID 19 mandates
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an order on Monday that puts an end to all local COVID-19 emergency orders put in place across the Sunshine State. It doesn’t affect mask orders and other restrictions imposed by businesses in Florida.

DeSantis’ latest bill and executive order immediately halts all local COVID-19 orders, such as those requiring masks and stricter restrictions. The order applies to government mandates but won’t affect businesses that have mask rules in place.

In signing the order, DeSantis declared that Florida was no longer in a state of emergency. He cited widespread availability of vaccines as one of the key reasons for the directive and made the case that those who still want restrictions are actually saying they don’t believe in vaccines.

All told, Florida is reporting 2,245,853 COVID-19 cases – an increase of 3,075 from Sunday to Monday. Of those, 2,203,807 are residents. A total of 84,804 COVID-19 cases have been reported in long-term care centers and 32,402 in correctional facilities. Across the state, 90,889 people have been hospitalized.

Locally, eight new COVID-19 cases were reported Monday in and around The Villages. Those include:

  • The Villages (Sumter, Lake and Marion counties) up 1 for a total of 4,619;
  • Leesburg up 5 for a total of 4,415;
  • Wildwood up 1 for a total of 1,088; and
  • Belleview up 1 for a total of 1,366.

Below is a breakdown of other COVID-19 activity in the local area:


  • Cases: 69,711 – increase of 88
  • Deaths: 1,866
  • Hospitalizations: 4,251


  • Cases: 9,294 – increase of 13
  • Deaths: 275
  • Hospitalizations: 578
  • Vaccinations: 83,464 (70,739 both doses)
  • Areas/cities with most cases: The Villages (4,251), Wildwood (1,088), Bushnell (1,031), Coleman (852) and Oxford (541).


  • Cases: 29,468 – increase of 39
  • Deaths: 633
  • Hospitalizations: 1,524
  • Vaccinations: 165,218 (128,230 both doses)
  • Cities with most cases: Clermont (7,898), Leesburg (4,415), Eustis (2,575), Mount Dora (2,151) and Tavares (2,032). The Villages also is reporting 185 cases.


  • Cases: 30,949 – increase of 36
  • Deaths: 958
  • Hospitalizations: 2,149
  • Vaccinations: 133,156 (101,988 both doses)
  • Cities with most cases: Ocala (22,629), Summerfield (1,920), Dunnellon (1,432), Belleview (1,366) and Silver Springs (681). The Villages also is reporting 183 cases.

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Stories in and around The Villages, Florida

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Letters to the Editor
Opinions submitted by residents in and around The Villages

A reset for respecting restaurant workers

In a Letter to the Editor, a Village of Caroline resident contends the current labor shortage should give us a reason to pause and reflect on how we got here.

Pravda published the party line

A Village of Fenney resident, in a Letter to the Editor, remembers that Pravda provided the party line in the Soviet Union. Why does that somehow seem familiar today?

Apartments and parking at Spanish Springs

A Village of Chatham resident is wondering how parking will be handled when apartments go in at Spanish Springs Town Square. Read his Letter to the Editor.

We can take our revenge at the ballot box

In a Letter to the Editor, a Village of Sabal Chase resident mourns the loss of the impact fees issue, but says voters can take their revenge at the ballot box.

Shame on The Villages for welcoming hateful voices

A Village of Liberty Park resident, in a Letter to the Editor, says shame on The Villages for welcoming voices that promote white power and hypocrisy.

The Villages, Florida