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Fla. To Fine Businesses $5K If They Ask A Customer For Proof Of COVID-19 Vaccination

Local resident Stephanie Hernandez takes a selfie in front of Carnival's Mardi Gras cruise ship, docked in the bay of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021, marking the first time a cruise ship visits the U.S. territory since the COVID-19 pandemic
Carlos Giusti
/
Associated Press
Local resident Stephanie Hernandez takes a selfie in front of Carnival's Mardi Gras cruise ship, docked in the bay of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021, marking the first time a cruise ship visits the U.S. territory since the COVID-19 pandemic

Starting this month the state of Florida will fine businesses that require proof of COVID-19 vaccination from customers.

The new rule filed by the Florida Department of Health imposes $5,000 fines for each violation.

The business, government entity or educational institution will get a notice of violation and will have the right to a hearing before any final action is taken.

The rule takes effect on September 16 and will be in place for five years. After five years, the rule will have to be reviewed and repealed, modified or renewed through the rulemaking process.

The rule does not apply to businesses that require employees to be vaccinated.

Related: Disney Bucks DeSantis, Announcing It Will Require Vaccinations For Bahama Cruises

Meanwhile Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration is battling in court with Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings over whether the company can require passengers to prove that they’ve been vaccinated. 

Disney, Carnival, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean cruise lines have all also announced vaccination requirements for eligible passengers traveling to the Bahamas. Exceptions will be made for adults with medical conditions that prohibit vaccination.

The Carnival Ecstasy sails from Jacksonville to the Bahamas.

A federal district judge last month sided with Norwegian, granting a preliminary injunction against the “vaccine passport” ban, but the state has challenged that ruling in the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Brendan Rivers can be reached at brivers@wjct.org, 904-358-6396 or on Twitter at @BrendanRivers.