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Naples city council meeting Monday to discuss beach closure

The Naples city council is meeting Monday to discuss reopening city beaches after they closed them down Sunday due to an influx of people.

A city council member said he favors a “hybrid” reopening, where the beaches are open all the time during the week but just mornings and evenings on the weekends to discourage people from coming over from the other coast.

Naples beaches were open just 10 days before being shut down again, prompting protests in the street.

“I just don’t think the ability for the government to take away through an edict or order or anything like that at the snap of the finger is something we should be OK with,” said Naples resident Joe Gonzales.

He wants everything to reopen as soon as possible.

But it’s the crowded beaches that pushed city leaders to make their decision Saturday.

People from Miami, where the beaches are still closed, were making the trip across the state to soak up the sunshine here in Southwest Florida, which is a little concerning for some neighbors and local businesses.

Some say they think the city made the right decision.

“Let’s care about business but let’s care a little bit about people too, and I feel very not secure to see all these people around,” said Giuseppe Gargiulo, manager at Bice Ristorante.

The city is holding an emergency meeting at 1 p.m. Monday to talk about the large crowds and lack of social distancing that led to the shutdown.

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