Pro wrestling is "essential" to the State of Florida -- says the state governor which has allowed WWE to remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic.
No joke. This is real.
Jerry Demings -- mayor of Orange County, Florida -- was asked Monday how the WWE Performance Center in Orlando has been allowed to stay in business while non-essential companies have been forced to close their doors.
As we previously reported, WWE has been taping at the Performance Center and plans to shoot "Raw" later today.
So, why exactly?
"I think initially there was a review that was done and they were not initially deemed an essential business,” Demings said.
"With some conversation with the Governor’s office regarding the Governor’s order, they were deemed an essential business. And so, therefore, they were allowed to remain open."
Demings did not go into detail about why the Governor's office changed its stance on WWE.
For their part, WWE tells us the health and safety of talent and staff is their top priority, saying ... “We believe it is now more important than ever to provide people with a diversion from these hard times."
"We are producing content on a closed set with only essential personnel in attendance following appropriate guidelines while taking additional precautions to ensure the health and wellness of our performers and staff. As a brand that has been woven into the fabric of society, WWE and its Superstars bring families together and deliver a sense of hope, determination and perseverance.”
Remember, WWE confirmed a performer hastested positive for COVID-19 -- but they believe that person caught it from medical workers. WWE also says the performer has recovered and they do not believe he or she spread it to other WWE personnel.
Demings addressed that situation on Monday.
“In terms of the specifics associated with the wrestling personality who tested positive, I don’t know any of the details of that obviously because of HIPAA laws," Demings said.
"But, that’s like a little family. A small family of professional athletes that wrestle. And, if one of my family members tested positive in my house, that would be concerning to me."
"We would have to make some provisions in our house to make sure that the rest of us not get infected. So, I would assume that, from a business perspective, the WWE is doing that type of analysis of its own family."