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Mayor Curry: Annual Jacksonville Memorial Day ceremony will be held virtually, continue practicing social distancing

Jacksonville Mayor Curry held a virtual news conference Thursday where he discussed the status of vacation rentals, Memorial Day plans and latest COVID-19 numbers.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla — During a Thursday update briefing on the city's response to the coronavirus, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry stressed the importance of social responsibility as the city starts to reopen.

Curry started the virtual meeting by giving the latest COVID-19 numbers for Duval County according to the Florida Department of Health.

As of 11:30 a.m. Thursday, there are 1,355 positive COVID-19 cases in Duval County,  229 hospitalizations and seven deaths, Curry said. The county has a 3% positive testing rate.

"We may not have a vaccine for this virus for quite some time but we can't afford to quarantine indefinitely, it's not sustainable," Curry said. "Doing so puts to great a strain financial and otherwise on our neighbors and their families, therefore we must find a way to move forward."

Curry said that some days numbers may be lower than others but overall the downward curve is continuing.

He said that when you are in public you should consider wearing a mask when in enclosed spaces to reduce the spread of the virus.

Yesterday, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis approved the city's plan to safely reopen vacation rentals in Duval County effective immediately.

Curry said that this will be done safely with guidelines in place for proper social distancing, advanced sanitization and limit person to person contact.

With Memorial Day quickly approaching, Curry also detailed the city's plans for the upcoming week.

A Virtual Memorial Day observance will be streamed on the City of Jacksonville's YouTube page and other social media accounts at 8 a.m. Monday.

It will feature remarks from local officials, military leadership, musical selections from the Voices of Jacksonville, Navy Band Southeast, Jacksonville Pipes and Drums and many more, Curry said.

CVS is opening three new drive-thru COVID-19 testing locations. They will be at the CVS' located on San Juan Avenue, State Highway 13 and Southside Boulevard. Patients must register in advance at CVS.com beginning Friday.

Also in attendance at the update briefing was Steven Woodard, Director of the Emergency Preparedness Division and Keith Powers, Chief of the Jacksonville Fire & Rescue Department.

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