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Gov. Phil Murphy. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe)

Murphy lifts stay at home order, raises gathering limits

By Nikita Biryukov, June 09 2020 2:21 pm

Gov. Phil Murphy rescinded his March stay at home order and raised capacity limits on indoor and outdoor gatherings Tuesday, signaling New Jersey’s continued movement toward the second stage of its phased reopening.

“We are no longer requiring you to stay at home, but we are asking you to continue to be responsible and safe,” Murphy said.

The March 21 order required employees who could work remotely be allowed to do so, though Tuesday’s developments did not include lifting of restrictions imposed on businesses.

The governor said the state would raise limits on indoor gatherings from 10 to 25% of a given establishment’s capacity, to a maximum of 50.

The limit on outdoor gatherings was increased from 25 to 100. Political protests and religious services may exceed those limits, the governor said.

Murphy said he anticipates further raising the gathering limit on outdoor activities in the coming days.

On June 22, the limit is expected to be raised to 250, and it is projected to double again, to 500, on July 3, though Murphy cautioned that a spike in COVID-19 cases would change that timeline.

Along with the increased gathering limits, Murphy on Tuesday announced he was authorizing some outdoor recreational and entertainment businesses to open June 22.

Water parks, amusement parks and arcades will remain closed for now, as will public playgrounds, the governor said.

The state also released guidance on pool re-openings Tuesday. Public and private pools will be allowed to resume operation at half capacity on June 22. They must post signage advising attendees to social distance, and residents are encouraged to wear masks while not in the water.

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