No Word on NJ Gyms After NY Moves Forward with Reopening Theirs

Gov. Phil Murphy said today that New Jersey is “trying to get there” on the reopening of gyms and indoor dining, but that “we are not there yet.”

“We are trying to get to ‘yes’ on things like gyms, indoor dining and theaters,” Murphy said. “I can’t tell you when, but we are working our tails off.”

He continued, stating that, “We are keenly aware that we had to make an abrupt decision,” referencing the original reversal of indoor dining reopening. “To the extent in which we get to yes, I don’t think any of us will sign onto it unless we believe, at that point, we are full speed ahead.”

When asked why a regional color-coded COVID-19 monitoring system, similar to the one implemented to better track local spikes when kids go back to school, couldn’t be used for the state’s businesses, Murphy said, “Put aside the differences between how vital it is to get kids educated versus the option that you have to go out to eat. … We can not ‘put the car in reverse’ once we make a decision.”

This all comes on the same day that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that gyms in his state will be allowed to open again as soon as Aug. 24, with limited capacity and a facemask requirement. 

Indoor dining is currently not allowed in New York City, however it is allowed in the rest of the state.

Fall Sports Update

Separately, Murphy announced today that the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) will make the final decision on whether high school sports will be played this year. A determination is expected to be made in the coming days.

“The NJSIAA will only pursue a sports schedule if they feel the proper health and safety requirements can be met,” Murphy said. “Some districts have already given notice that their teams will not be playing, as is their right, and we are not going to overrule them.”

Murphy also said that, if sports were to be played, a student’s choice to participate in remote learning or in-person instruction will have no bearing on their ability to play their respective sport.

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