Gov. Phil Murphy today signed an executive order that requires face coverings be worn outdoors at all times where social distancing is not possible.
“This is absolutely vital when walking down a packed boardwalk, or standing in a line that is not properly spaced apart,” Murphy said. “[Wearing a face covering] is about life and death. It is about showing your community what side you are on in the fight against COVID-19.”
Exceptions to the mandate include those eating at an outdoor dining establishment, individuals whose health would be compromised by wearing a mask, and children under 2 years old.
“Requiring masks outdoors is a step that I had hoped we would not have to take,” Murphy said. “Unfortunately, we have been seeing a backslide in compliance as the weather has gotten warmer, and not surprisingly, as a result, our rate of transmission has crept up.”
New Jersey’s current rate of transmission now sits at 1.10, the highest that it has been since April.
“This means that every new case we report is leading to [more than] one new case,” Murphy said.
More Outdoor Dining
In an effort to increase the number of restaurants that can provide outdoor dining, Murphy said that areas of restaurants with at least two open sides will now be considered outdoors and be allowed to re-open for in-person service.
Motor Vehicle Commission Backlog
Murphy announced that he is exempting all Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) personnel from any work furloughs in an effort to accommodate the large backlog of motorists seeking MVC related service.
Beginning on Monday, MVC offices will be open six days a week (Monday through Saturday).
Murphy urged residents to visit NJMVC.gov and utilize the commission’s online services for any transactions that can be completed online.
Yesterday marked the first time that MVC offices were open in nearly three months, and Murphy said that the long wait times that many motorists experienced were not unexpected.
“After a three-month layoff we knew that countless New Jerseyans needed to get their new licenses, register new vehicles, or renew their paperwork,” Murphy said, while encouraging people to take advantage of the early pandemic extensions on expiration dates of drivers licenses, registrations and other documents, in order to alleviate some of the pressure on the agencies.
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