By NANETTE LoBIONDO GALLOWAY
TRENTON – New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy today signed Executive Order No. 107 directing all residents to stay in their homes until further notice and only venture out to get essential goods and services, such as food or medical attention. He urged those with homes at the Jersey shore to remain in their primary residences.
He cancelled all gatherings, including weddings and birthday parties, and ordered all non-essential businesses to close their stores to the public at 9 p.m. Saturday, March 21.
Grocery stores, farmer’s markets and farms that sell directly to customers, and other food stores, including retailers that offer a varied assortment of foods comparable to what exists at a grocery store, and food banks can remain open.
Also permitted to remain open are:
- Pharmacies and medical marijuana dispensaries
- Medical supply stores
- Gas stations
- Convenience stores
- Ancillary stores within healthcare facilities
- Hardware and home improvement stores
- Banks and other financial institutions
- Laundromats and dry-cleaning services
- Stores that principally sell supplies for children under five years
- Pet stores
- Liquor stores
- Car dealerships, but only for auto maintenance and repair, and auto mechanics
- Printing and office supply shops
- Mail and delivery stores
Murphy said residents heeding the advice will help “flatten the curve” of coronavirus infections that will stress the health care system.
“I urge those who have homes at the Jersey Shore to NOT go to them at this time. The local infrastructure, especially the health care infrastructure, is not prepared for the influx of part-time residents. Please stay at your primary residences,” he said.
BREAKING: I just signed an Executive Order directing nearly all residents to STAY AT HOME.
ALL gatherings are canceled.
ALL non-essential retail businesses must indefinitely close their physical stores to the public effective 9:00 p.m. tonight.
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) March 21, 2020
He said it’s okay to visit families or close friends, report to work or engage in outdoor activities.
“We know the virus spreads through person-to person contact, and the best way to prevent further exposure is to limit our public interactions to only the most essential purposes,” Murphy said. “This is a time for us all to come together in one mission to ‘flatten the curve’ and slow – and eventually halt – the spread of coronavirus.”
When in public, individuals must practice social distancing and stay at least 6 feet apart whenever possible, excluding immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners.
The order does not limit the operations of law enforcement, media or other government entities.
The order also mandates that all businesses or non-profits, wherever practicable, must accommodate their workforce with telework or work-from-home arrangements, or make best efforts to reduce staff on site to the minimal number necessary to ensure that essential operations can continue.
The order allows law enforcement officers, firefighters, first responders, cashiers and store clerks, construction workers, utility workers, repair workers, warehouse workers, lab researchers, IT maintenance workers, janitorial and custodial staff, and certain administrative staff to remain on the job.
The order reinforces existing bans on recreational and entertainment businesses, requirements that all restaurants operate by delivery and takeout only, and the directive that all schools cease in-person instruction.
Executive Order No 108, also signed today, does not invalidate municipal restrictions that have already been imposed, but cities and counties may not impose additional restrictions that conflict with Executive Order No. 107.
For more information, see https://covid19.nj.gov/
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