New Jersey Delays Indoor Dining At Restaurants, NYC May As Well After Spike In COVID-19 Cases Across Country
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- New Jersey is postponing its plan to allow restaurants to resume indoor dining in Stage 3.
Gov. Phil Murphy made the announcement Monday afternoon.
Murphy said, given the national uptick in coronavirus cases and noncompliance by some in New Jersey, indoor dining is postponed for the foreseeable future.
"It brings me no joy to do this, but we have no choice," said Murphy. "The carelessness of one establishment can completely undo the good work of many others...We will not tolerate outlier bars and restaurants and, frankly, patrons who think the rules don't apply to them."
Murphy noted a handful of businesses have not been following state guidelines concerning social distancing and face coverings.
It comes after Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio both said they were reconsidering what to do about indoor dining in New York City, expressing concern about the spike in cases across the country.
"We are now going to re-examine the indoor dining rules for Phase 3," the mayor said Monday.
Phase 3 is set to start on Monday, July 6. De Blasio said the rest of the phase will move forward, but indoor dining may be paused or modified.
"The most important thing is to keep us healthy and safe and not allow a resurgence," he said.
WATCH: Mayor Bill de Blasio Gives Daily Briefing
Cuomo said the conditions in the city are complicated, because of a lack of compliance and enforcement and because of the volume of travelers.
"There's a lack of compliance with social distancing. You can see it in pictures. You can see it if you walk down the street. You can see the crowds in front of bars. You can see the crowds on street corners," he said. "It is undeniable."
He said he will have a final decision about indoor dining by Wednesday.
"Indoor dining has shown that it has been problematic, that a virus spreads in closed indoor areas that have air condition systems," he said. "The state's going to be reviewing the data and consulting with stakeholders in New York City. I've started speaking with restaurant owners, business owners about the risk-reward on indoor dining."
WATCH: Gov. Andrew Cuomo Gives Daily Briefing
Shane Hathaway runs Hold Fast Kitchen and Spirits. As he sets up for outdoor dining on Monday, CBS2's Natalie Duddridge broke the news to him that indoor dining could be delayed.
"That would be horrible, a blow to the gut, because we've been pushing ourselves to the max," Hathaway said.
Both Cuomo and de Blasio said outdoor dining has been overwhelmingly successful.
"I wouldn't go to indoor dining. I'm comfortable with outdoor dining, I'm fine with that. I just don't feel the need to be inside a restaurant right now," one woman said.
"I think maybe one week more," a man added.
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For now, along Restaurant Row cleaning and mask wearing is the mandate.
"We do have this thing where we have to clean every 45 minutes," Bareburger employee Jacqueline Perez said. "I think whatever they decide is for the best. Obviously, we are all scared to get infected with COVID. If they think they should push it back, then I agree."
So far, 6,100 restaurants have applied for outdoor seating in New York City.
The mayor also said the city will reopen barbecue areas in parks in time for the Fourth of July weekend.
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"It's time for barbecuing to come back in our parks, and they will be opened in the coming days for this weekend," de Blasio said.
He urged people to continue to wear face coverings and maintain social distance.
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