Governor Murphy Eases COVID Gathering Rules

During a Monday afternoon press briefing, Governor Phil Murphy announced an easing of more gathering restrictions for the state.  Murphy did not, however, expand capacity numbers at restaurants and bars despite saying over the weekend he had “a major announcement” coming Monday.

Beginning on May 10, the following will have their capacity limits increased to 50-percent, with a maximum capacity of 250 people:

  • Private catered events (including weddings and school proms)
  • Political events
  • Funerals
  • Memorial services
  • Performances

In addition, Murphy said dance floors will be permitted to open at privately, catered events (including weddings and school proms).  Attendees must wear mask and social distancing in place.  However, these expansions will not include bars and nightclubs, Murphy said. The Governor said the virus spreads too easily in those types of settings.

“This allowance for dance floors is only applicable to these closed, closely supervised events. Dance floors for instance at bars and other businesses such at night clubs will remain closed at this time. As we know they are less controlled and more hospitable, unfortunately, for this virus,” Murphy said.

The Governor said catered events are easier to police COVID issues than bars and restaurants, although he added, he hopes to be able to expand those operations “sooner rather than later.”

New Jersey is expected to announce guidelines for proms and graduations later today.

Outdoor amusement businesses, which includes carnivals and fairs such as the New Jersey State Fair and Six Flags Great Adventure, will be able to operate at 50 percent capacity beginning May 10.