TRENTON, NJ — Charter and rental boats will return to New Jersey’s waterways, beginning Sunday, May 17, at sunrise.

This latest Executive Order signed by Governor Phil Murphy to restart the state’s economy comes two days after he announced that Jersey shore beaches would reopen for the Memorial Day weekend.

“In addition to enjoying our beaches, our shore-goers will also be able to enjoy some time on the water as well,” he said during his May 16 press briefing.  

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These steps are being taken to restart the state’s economy “because the data says it is possible,” Murphy said, referring to statistics during the past month that show a continued flattering of the curve of the coronavirus.

Under the new order, boat operators will be required to implement social distancing and sanitation measures. They also will need to take all payments online or by telephone to reduce direct person-to-person contact, as well as maintain passenger and customer logs for “contact tracing” purposes, if warranted.