As New Jersey continues under a state of emergency due to the coronavirus, please know that our district office remains available to serve constituents by phone and email. Included below are links to information that you may find helpful, along with important state and national news updates related to COVID-19.
Important State & Federal News:
- Daily Briefing: Gov. Murphy will deliver a coronavirus briefing at 1 p.m. in Trenton. Click here to watch the livestream.
- Clarity on Reopening: We have heard repeatedly from our constituents that the manner in which reopenings have been announced appears to be arbitrary and inconsistent, with no clear communication from the governor regarding the metrics or benchmarks that must be met for executive orders to be loosened or lifted. Other states, including New York, have set trackable metrics for reopening. In the absence of specific benchmarks for reopening from his administration, we have urged Gov. Murphy to review the many thoughtful reopening plans that have been submitted to him by counties, trade groups, and chambers of commerce. If those plans meet CDC guidelines, we believe he should authorize them to be enacted immediately.
- Graduation Ceremonies in July: The governor has announced that modified in-person outdoor commencement ceremonies will be permitted starting July 6th. The NJDOE has issued guidance that outlines three options for K-12 commencement ceremonies: 1) virtual; 2) drive-through/drive-in; or 3) modified in-person, outdoor ceremonies. Similarly, the Secretary of Higher Education has issued guidance for college graduations. No indication was given by the governor how the July 6th date was selected.
- Outdoor Gatherings of Up to 25 People Permitted: An executive order was signed increasing the limit on outdoor gatherings from 10 to 25 people and allowing recreational campgrounds to reopen with social distancing measures in place. The limit on indoor gatherings remains at 10 people. The order also recommends, but does not order, that people wear a face covering while at outdoor gatherings and recreational campgrounds when social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. The order also covers:
- Charter Boats and Recreational Businesses: The order rescinds the 10-person capacity limit on charter boats and recreational businesses opened under Executive Order No. 147, including archery ranges, batting cages, golf driving ranges, horseback riding, tennis clubs, and shooting ranges, and imposes a new 25-person capacity limitation with a requirement that individuals can remain six feet apart at all times.
- Parks, Beaches, Boardwalks, and Lakeshores: The order allows gatherings of no more than 25 people at State Parks and Forests, county and municipal parks, public and private beaches, boardwalks, lakes, and lakeshores, but continues to prohibit special events such as festivals, concerts, fireworks, and movies.
- Recreational Campgrounds: The order permits private and public recreational campgrounds to reopen to the public. The following shall remain closed at recreational campgrounds: picnic areas; playgrounds; pavilions; and other buildings amenities, or facilities, except restrooms and showers. Recreational campgrounds that are open to the public must comply with the same restrictions required for recreational businesses. The Department of Environmental Protection is required to prepare a phased-in reopening plan for all campgrounds located on State Parks and Forests within fifteen days.
- Professional Sports: An executive order was signed allowing professional sports teams that train or play in New Jersey to practice and engage in games or matches, if their leagues resume competition. The order explicitly allows professional athletes who train and/or play in New Jersey to fulfill their job duties. It allows for teams to utilize their New Jersey-based facilities for practice, training, and other purposes where team personnel have to be on location and cannot work remotely.
- The latest data on coronavirus infections in New Jersey are available on the New Jersey COVID-19 Dashboard. The dashboard has been updated to provide more information on long-term care facilities, State psychiatric hospitals, and overall demographics on COVID-19 deaths.
- New Jersey’s COVID-19 Information Hub includes valuable resources and information for families, workers, and employers who have questions or needs arising from the current crisis.