Jersey City and Hoboken will follow Gov. Phil Murphy’s lead and opt to eliminate local and bar restaurant curfews starting on Friday at 8 a.m., according to Mayors Steven Fulop and Ravi Bhalla.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“Based on guidance provided by Governor Murphy and the State of New Jersey, we have made the joint decision to allow bars and restaurants to operate during normal, regular business hours without a local curfew,” Fulop and Bhalla began in a lengthy joint statement.
” … We trust that if Governor Murphy believed a curfew was necessary, it would still be in effect. But recent analysis from our health departments, as well as information provided by the New Jersey Health Department, suggests that a curfew at this time may no longer be necessary. This time around, we believe that a coordinated regional approach is the best way to implement safety measures, when necessary.”
They continued that city workers will continue to aggressively monitor bars and restaurants to ensure that COVID-19 safety precautions are still in effect and that anyone who violates those rules will be held accountable – also thanking those businesses who have been safe through the duration of the pandemic.
This morning, Murphy revealed that New Jersey bars and restaurants would be able to have indoor dining at 35 percent capacity, up from 25 percent, with a 10 p.m. curfew lifted starting Friday.
While he is allowing municipalities to impose their own local regulations, it does not appear that any major cities will be doing that thus far.
Assemblyman Nick Chiaravalloti (D-31) was the first state legislator to ask Murphy to extend the curfew for Super Bowl Sunday, though the governor said today that the annual major sports spectacle did not factor into his decision.
Bhalla and Fulop haven’t always been on the same page when it comes to COVID-19 restrictions.
While Hoboken implemented a midnight bar and restaurant curfew in October, Fulop said that Jersey City wouldn’t be bringing one back any time soon since “it isn’t as if you can only get Covid at night.”
Murphy then implemented a statewide 10 p.m. curfew on indoor dining the following month.