News Flash

Emergency Management & Public Health

Posted on: March 20, 2020

Update on Murphy Administration Actions on COVID-19

On Monday, March 16 Governor Murphy held a joint press conference with Governor Cuomo of New York and Governor LaMont of Connecticut. There they announced that gatherings larger than 50 people will be prohibited. Gyms were closed at 8 PM and remain closed moving forward. Bars and Restaurants were also closed at 8 PM moving forward, with the ability to re-open each day to offer take-out and delivery services. Food establishments will be prohibited from offering eat-in services.

Pursuant to Executive Order 104, the Governor also took the following action.

  • Closure of ALL pre-K, K-12 schools, higher education institutions beginning March 18.
  • Closure of ALL casinos, racetracks, theaters, gyms
  • Closure of ALL non-essential retail, recreational and entertainment businesses after 8pm
  • Ban gatherings of over 50 people
  • Our March 17 correspondence summarizes Executive Order 104.

On Tuesday, March 17 The Division of Local Government Services issued Local Finance Notice 2020-06 on emergency procurement and use of storm recovery reserves in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency and strongly recommended the cancellation of bid openings for non-essential goods and services. The Local Finance Notice also noted that municipalities and counties with storm recovery reserves may use those funds for the COVID-19 response. Our March 15 correspondence summarizes Local Finance Notice 2020-06.

On Thursday, March 19 Governor Murphy signed Executive Order 105 regarding upcoming elections against the backdrop of the State of Emergency in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To summarize, all March and April elections will be moved to Tuesday, May 12. Nominating petitions may still be filed in person if complete but going forward the nominating petition process will be moved online using an online petition form. The March 30 deadline will remain in place. The May elections will be conducted through Vote-By-Mail (VBM) with VBM ballots automatically sent to all voters. More details are at Elections.NJ.Gov.

The June primary is not impacted, except for the petition process.

The Governor also announced the closure of personal care businesses at 8 pm last night, such as barbershops, hair salons, nail salons, tattoo parlors and massage parlors.

The League’s March 19 Town Crier blog post provides greater detail about Executive Order 105.

On Friday, a COVID-19 testing site will open at Bergen County College. A second location is expected to open soon in Monmouth County at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, with additional sites added in the upcoming days and weeks.

As of Thursday, November 19 there were 742 confirmed positive individuals who have contracted the virus, with 9 fatalities. Unfortunately, these numbers are expected to increase significantly in the upcoming weeks.

In the meanwhile, we urge you to follow the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the State Department of Health. Please share that guidance with your residents. Links to those resources and more are available at the League COVID 19 Resource page.

Contact: Michael F. Cerra, Assistant Executive Director,, 609-695-3481 x120.

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