Group of senators offers advice for Murphy commission, including call for reopening of outdoor activities

(Editor’s Note: Later Wednesday, Gov. Phil Murphy announced he would reopen parks and golf courses starting Saturday.)

A bipartisan group of state senators, led by Senate President Steve Sweeney, offered up some suggestions for Gov. Phil Murphy’s new Restart and Recovery Commission aimed at planning the reopening of the New Jersey economy after the COVID-19 pandemic.

A joint statement was issued by:

  • Sweeney (D-West Deptford);
  • Steve Oroho (R-Sparta);
  • Declan O’Scanlon (R-Holmdel);
  • M. Teresa Ruiz (D-Newark);
  • Paul Sarlo (D-Wood-Ridge);
  • Troy Singleton (D-Moorestown).

The group said they have been consulting with the business community regarding reopening strategies, urging advance planning for the best possible rollout.

“We implore the governor’s commission to move swiftly with advancing a plan to support economic recovery for New Jersey,” the group said in a statement. “The Senate has been engaged in conversations with business owners and organizations who are experiencing this crisis, and we have been communicating their needs with the Governor’s Office and our legislative colleagues.”

The group suggested planning for immediate reopening or restarting of:

  • Construction;
  • Car sales;
  • Outdoor recreation such as parks and golf courses;
  • Beach activities (if social distancing can be maintained);
  • Elective surgeries and other medical needs.

The senators noted that these reopenings would be consistent with neighboring states New York and Pennsylvania.

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