CRANFORD - Indoor dining, which was set to resume in New Jersey on Thursday at 25% capacity, has been postponed, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Monday.
“We have seen spikes in other states driven, in part, by the return of patrons to indoor dining establishments, where they are seated, and without face coverings,” he said. “We are also moved to take this step because of what we have seen in some establishments across the state.”
Minority Leader in the New Jersey State Assembly minority leader Jon Bramnick was quick to speak out.
"I am very disappointed that the Governor without any consultation of the elected legislature stopped reopening of indoor dining scheduled for this Thursday," said Bramnick via Twitter. "This should not be decided by one person. No transparency, no discussion and no debate."
Christos Zavolas, owner of Ambeli Greek Taverna in Cranford said that while he is ok with the return of indoor seating getting postponed, he is fearful some restaurants won't survive the delay. Cranford's Pairings Palate + Plate announced on Sunday they have permanently closed due to COVID-19 hardships.
"Whatever is good for the community, I'm for it," said Zavolas. "I'm doing ok because my guests are so loyal. They kept us going. I didn't have to let anybody go from my kitchen staff. But I'm the exception. One of the best restaurants in Cranford had to close its doors. Why? Because the people on top decided to keep restaurants closed. It's not fair. Businesses are being singled out. Can we do anything about it? No. So we just shut up and hope we survive."
TAPinto Westfield's Jackie Lieberman TAPinto Scotch Plains/Fanwood's John Mooney contributed to this article.