Governor Murphy Escalates COVID-19 Crackdown Against Small Businesses in Violation of Executive Orders

TRENTON, NJ – Inspectors from the New Jersey Division of the ABC have been dispatched across the state by Governor Phil Murphy to issue fines and if necessary shut down small businesses found to be in violation of his executive orders regarding indoor dining, social distancing and other executive orders aimed at New Jersey’s restaurant and hospitality industry.

New Jersey State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan updated the Governor on the progress of the sweeping enforcement effort.

“Newark Police responded to a house party where there was more than 100 people in a relatively small house. That homeowner was cited,” Callahan said. “Also over the weekend, ABC investigators conducted compliance operations. One establishment in Vineland was cited. They also visited 76 licensed establishments in Middlesex County; 10 were found to be in violation of the Executive Order. On Saturday, an establishment in Manahawkin and Ocean also found to be in violation.”

In Elizabeth, city officials initiated their own crackdown, citing many businesses with executive order violations ranging from social distancing infractions to employees not wearing facial coverings.

“The City of Elizabeth has its own local task force with health officials, fire prevention officials as well as licensing inspectors. They went out on compliance checks and issued multiple summonses to various locations. Some were local code violations, others related to compliance, social distancing, employees not wearing facial coverings. I would refer anybody with specifics in the City of Elizabeth to contact Elizabeth for those details as far as those establishments,” Callahan said.

The effort will continue through the holiday season as state inspectors are looking to catch and fine businesses who are in violation of the Governor’s strict policies.