BRIDGEWATER, NJ — New Jersey mayors, along with Bridgewater Mayor, have teamed up and sent a letter to Governor Phil Murphy Thursday urging him to increase the indoor dining capacity.
The Mayors for "Main Street" Alliance is asking for the capacity to increase from the current 25 to 66 percent as colder months approach.
The letter states, "...restaurants have made it to this point through their ingenuity and sheer force of will but we fear that, with cold weather approaching, many will lack the facilities to host a feasible outdoor dining arrangement."
"Restaurant in our towns are closing left and right," said Bridgewater Mayor Matthew Moench. "We need action now so restaurants can begin their planning process and their livelihood will not be left hanging in the balance."
"I believe we are at the point where the evidence shows we can follow successful indoor dining practices, follow good hygiene, and keep people safe," said Scotch Plains Mayor Alexander Smith. "I know that Scotch Plains restaurants are faithfully following the States rules outlined in the Governor's executive orders."
The letter also points to Dr. Anthony Fauci's recent statements about the flattening of the curve across local municipalities and across the State. According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, in your conversation with him last week,
"According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, in your conversation with him last week, New Jersey is in a good position to continue to reopen the economy over the Fall and Winter months," the letter states. "Restaurants, in the main, have acted in good faith and have shown us all that, if done correctly, the threat of increased spread of the virus can be mitigated... We urge you to consider this request and move with expediency to address these concerns before it is too late."
The alliance launched in May initially began with five Somerset County Mayors including Moench, Bernards Mayor James Baldassare, Bedminster Mayor Larry Jacobs, Bernardsville Mayor Mary Jane Canose, and Far Hills Mayor Paul Vallone. Read More: 5 Somerset County Mayors Join Forces To Reopen Businesses
It has since expanded to more than 20 mayors across the state. The group mission is to advocate for the swift and safe reopening of businesses within their communities. Businesses that that alliance says have been drastically and negativity impacted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It also serves as a platform for local elected officials to share experiences, ideas and best practices.
This alliance consists of the following New Jersey Mayors (mostly Republican):
Mayor Marcia Asdal, Chester Township, Morris County
Mayor James Baldassare, Bernards Township, Somerset County
Mayor Zachery Bray, Raritan Borough, Somerset County
Mayor Mary Jane Canose, Borough of Bernardsville, Somerset County
Mayor Jason Cilento, Dunellen Borough, Middlesex County
Mayor Christine Serrano Glassner, Mendham Borough, Morris County
Mayor Jeff Herb, White Township, Warren County
Mayor Janet Hoven, Chester Borough, Morris County
Mayor Larry Jacobs, Township of Bedminster, Somerset County
Mayor Jim Mengucci, Lopatcong Township. Warren County
Mayor Matthew Moench, Bridgewater Township
Mayor Michael "Mick" Marion, Warren Township, Somerset County
Mayor Matthew Murello, Washington Township, Morris County
Mayor Sarah Neibart, Mendham Township, Morris County
Mayor Richard Onderko, Manville Borough, Somerset County
Mayor Gregory Skinner, Borough of Peapack & Gladstone, Somerset County
Mayor Al Smith, Scotch Plains, Union County
Mayor Todd Tersigni, Phillipsburg, Warren County
Mayor Brian Tipton, Harmony Township, Warren County
Mayor Doug Tomson, Hillsborough Township, Somerset County
Mayor Paul Vallone, Far Hills Borough, Somerset County
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