Murphy (again) teases ‘major’ announcement on reopening is coming Monday

N.J. reports more than 3M residents are now fully vaccinated, rate of transmission has dropped to stunningly low 0.46

Gov. Phil Murphy, in a Sunday afternoon tweet, again teased a “major announcement on easing restrictions” Monday afternoon.

Murphy said the state’s COVID-19 metrics are “trending decisively in the right direction.”

In fact, on a weekend in which the state reported 3 million residents have been fully vaccinated, the state’s rate of transmission has dropped to 0.46 — well below the 1.0 mark that has been set as a goal.

Murphy could be ready to remove all indoor dining restrictions, as some other states have done, or greatly increase capacities for outdoor events, such as high school graduations.

Regardless, Monday will offer a redo from the previous week, when promises of a big announcement resulted in capacity changes that few seemed to notice.

New Jersey reached two COVID-19 vaccination milestones this weekend. In addition to the 3 million fully vaccinated, the state said it has now administered more than 7 million shots.

The state currently is on pace to reach its goal of having 4.7 million residents vaccinated, but all health officials acknowledge the challenge is getting more difficult, as the process is now reaching segments of the population that are unwilling to get vaccinated or are having difficulty getting to vaccine sites.

With this in mind, the state announced late last week that all six of its vaccine megasites are open for walk-in vaccinations during select times. Here are more details:

  • Atlantic County Megasite: Atlantic City Convention Center (1 Convention Blvd., Atlantic City): 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.;
  • Bergen County Megasite: Racetrack at Meadowlands (1 Racetrack Drive, East Rutherford): 8 a.m. to noon;
  • Burlington County Megasite: Moorestown Mall (400 Route 38, Moorestown): 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.;
  • Gloucester County Megasite: Rowan College of South Jersey (1400 Tanyard Road, Sewell): 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.;
  • Middlesex County Megasite: New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center (97 Sunfield Ave., Edison): 8 a.m. to noon.;
  • Morris County Megasite: Rockaway Townsquare Mall (301 Mt. Hope Ave., Rockaway): 8 a.m. to 12 noon.

In addition, Rite Aid announced last week that it is taking walk-ins at its 129 New Jersey locations (though appointments are the only way of ensuring there will be a shot available). CVS said it has same-day appointments available at its more than 250 locations.