JERSEY CITY – Mayor Steven M. Fulop declared a state of emergency today due to the threat of spreading the deadly Covid-19 (coronavirus), closing most commercial businesses except food providers and trimming down the government workforce to minimal staffing levels.
In an Executive Orders signed just before noon, Mayor Fulop declared the emergency a week after Jersey City took the national lead in mandating preventive measures to combat the spread of the pandemic Coronavirus by evoking a curfew on liquor establishments and requiring businesses with more than 25 persons keep records that identified each patron.
The new order will significantly reduce non-emergency governmental staffing levels, whereas non-essential employees will be allowed to stay home on a rotational basis and work from home. While each office will remain open, residents are still required to make appointments to visit city buildings or sites to receive services.
“With the threat if this virus spreading throughout the state, I believe it is necessary to do whatever makes good health sense for the community at large, limit the opportunity for the virus to spread while still finding a balance for people to live their lives in a safe and healthy manner,” Fulop said.
The work schedule of the city’s uniformed workforce is deemed essential, and their schedules will remain unchanged with their staffing totals completely intact.
Last Friday, the first confirmed case of a resident with the coronavirus was identified. As of today, there are five confirmed cases in the city, three whom are recovering at home and two non-residents who are hospitalized. Anyone who believes they have been infected with the virus or come into contact with someone infected is urged to contact their health care provider. Jersey City also established a hotline for those who have been exposed where health officials can provide guidance at 201 547-5208.
The emergency mandates that by midnight tonight the closure of movie theaters, performance centers, gyms, fitness center, barber shops, day care centers, nail salons, and bars and nightclubs that don’t serve food. These restrictions do not apply to grocery stores; however, supermarkets have reserved 7 am to 8 am only for senior residents’ shopping; general public from 8 am to 9 am; and 9 am to 11 am for disabled, pregnant women, and senior residents. The rest of the day is open to all residents.
Other initiatives the city instituted to thwart the spread of the virus are allowing restaurants to remain open but only for takeout orders and deliveries, while also encouraging medical offices to focus on urgent appointments where possible and to exercise social distancing. None of the restrictions apply to grocery stores, cafeterias within nursing homes or similar facilities. Also, all schools in Jersey are closed or until further notice.
Mayor Fulop is keeping residents informed by daily updates at 3 pm via Facebook Live on the Jersey City Facebook Page. If you have specific questions you want us to answer, please email email@example.com
All media inquiries should be directed to Kimberly Scalcione, Press Secretary to Mayor Steven M. Fulop at KScalcione@jcnj.org or 201-376-0699. ////
Do you have a news-tip or want to share a story with us? Please Fill out the following form. Anonymous tips are also welcome.