Welcome to two leading Voices of the Business Community in Essex County:
LOCAL BUSINESSES'
"CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC RESOURCE CENTER"
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-May 13, 2020

Governor Murphy Signs Executive Order Permitting Resumption of Non-Essential Construction, Curbside Pickup at Non-Essential Retail Businesses, and Gatherings in Cars

TRENTON
 – As part of New Jersey’s Road Back, Governor Phil Murphy today signed Executive Order No. 142, permitting the resumption of non-essential construction, curbside pickup at non-essential retail businesses, and car gatherings for the purpose of drive-through and drive-in events. The construction and non-essential retail provisions will take effect at 6:00 a.m. on Monday, May 18, while the car gatherings provision will take effect immediately. “I’ve been clear that data will determine dates, and what we are seeing gives us confidence that we can begin the careful restart of our economy,” said Governor Murphy. “Over the past eight weeks, New Jerseyans have taken our stay-at-home order seriously and have created the conditions that make this next phase possible. The steps we are taking allow for important standards of social distancing to continue with the return of safe, responsible business operations.” 

Non-Essential Construction: The Order permits non-essential construction projects to resume effective at 6:00 a.m. on Monday, May 18. All construction projects must abide by the social distancing, safety, and sanitization requirements that are described in detail in the Governor’s Executive Order.

Curbside Pickup at Non-Essential Retail Businesses: The Order also permits non-essential retail businesses to allow curbside pickup of goods, beginning at 6:00 a.m. on Monday, May 18, but businesses must continue to have their in-store operations closed to customers.  Businesses who choose to offer curbside pickup must abide by the requirements in the Order, which include but are not limited to the following:
In-store operations should be limited to those employees who are responsible for the operations required for curbside pickup;
Customer transactions should be handled in advance by phone, email, facsimile or other means that avoid person-to-person contact;
Customers shall notify the retailer by text message, email, or phone once they arrive, or make best efforts to schedule their arrival time in advance.  The customer should be asked to remain in their vehicle, if arriving by car, until store staff delivers the purchase;
Designated employees should bring goods outside of the retail establishment and place goods directly in a customer’s vehicle when possible, avoiding person-to-person contact; and
Such businesses must follow social distancing and mitigation practices outlined in previous orders, including requiring workers to wear cloth face coverings when in contact with other workers or customers and gloves when in contact with goods or customers. 

Car Gatherings:  The Order states that car gatherings do not violate the Governor’s ban on gatherings under Executive Order No. 107.  Examples of such car gatherings include but are not limited to drive-in movies, religious services, or drive-through farms or safaris.  Car gatherings will be subject to the restrictions in the Order, which include but are not limited to the following:
Attendees must remain in their same car throughout the gathering, unless 1) an occupant needs to get out of the vehicle for their health or safety or 2) an occupant needs to use the restroom;
The vehicle must remain closed at all times unless 1) there is six feet of distance between other vehicles or individuals or 2) an officer, public official or guard requires the vehicle to open. There is a further exception allowing the opening of the vehicle if necessary for health or safety;
Individuals organizing the gathering who are not in vehicles must follow social distancing and wear cloth face coverings; and
To the degree that a gathering requires pre-payment, or seeks donations of any kind, contactless options for pre-payment or donation, such as online or by telephone, must be offered wherever feasible.

Retail businesses operating in shopping malls are permitted to operate by curbside pickup, in accordance with the other requirements of this paragraph, but staff must bring the goods to customers at the exterior of the mall.  The indoor portions of shopping malls must remain closed, as required by the Governor's previous orders.
 HOW TO APPLY FOR A NJEDA SMALL BUSINESS EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE GRANT 
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Helpful COVID-19 Website Links: 

#COVID19 is impacting all of us, but #SmallBiz are the hardest hit. The NJEDA is helping with a suite of seven (7) new #SmallBizRelief initiatives. Learn more about how these programs can help your business by clicking the NJEDA link above.
March 26 Update from NJ Assemblyman Erik Peterson
Governor Murphy's Executive Orders:
The following retail stores may continue to stay open: grocery stores, pharmacies, take-out restaurants, farmer's markets and farm stands, gas stations and their retail stores, liquor stores, hardware stores, banks, healthcare stores, dry-cleaners, pet stores, childcare stores, auto-repair shops, printers, office-supply stores, and mail delivery stores, like UPS and FedEx.
All other businesses and non-profits must create telework options, if feasible. If a business cannot establish a work-from-home option, it must reduce on-site staff to the minimal number necessary to ensure operations can continue.
The order does not apply to law enforcement, first responders, essential retail employees, construction, utility, home repair, warehouse, lab techs, IT staff, or cleaners.
The following have been added to the list of essential businesses (3-24):
Mobile phone retail and repair shops.
Bicycle shops, but only to provide service and repair.
Livestock feed stores.
Nurseries and garden centers.
Farming equipment stores.


“Stay at home” order: All residents are to stay at home or at their place of residence unless they are leaving for the following reasons:
1) Obtaining goods or services from essential retail businesses;
2) Obtaining takeout or food beverages from restaurants;
3) Seeking medical attention, essential social services, or assistance from law enforcement;
4) Visiting family or close friends, caretakers, or romantic partners;
5) Reporting to or performing their job;
6) Walking, running, or engaging in outdoor activities with immediate family, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners;
7) Leaving for an educational, religious, or political reason;
8) Leaving because of a reasonable fear for health or safety; or
9) Leaving at the direction of law enforcement or other government agency.
ATTENTION, BUSINESSES IN THE ORANGES:
We are creating a list of "OPEN FOR BUSINESS" establishments for our readers. Please call Jessica at (973) 666-8072 and leave a voicemail with your business name, address, phone number, hours of operation, and any restrictions so shoppers/clients will have your information. You can also email the information to: firsteamgt@aol.com. Stay safe, and thank you!
ANNOUNCING OUR 2020
"FAVORITE BUSINESS CONTEST" WINNERS
Fourteen local businesses have been chosen by customers as their “2020 Favorite Businesses” according to an annual contest conducted by two local business organizations in East Orange and Orange. The Business and Professional Association of the Oranges (BPAO) and the Orange Chamber of Commerce (OCC) distributed ballots to customers during January and February and collected 184 ballots that cast 306 votes for 77 businesses in 28 categories. The 14 businesses that reached the minimum threshold of votes to win their categories are:

AUTO SERVICE: Friendly Auto Service, 528 Main Street, Orange
BANK: PNC Bank, 565 Main Street, East Orange, and 410 Main Street, Orange
CHILD CARE: Zadie’s Early Childcare Center, 280 S. Harrison Street, East Orange
CLOTHING STORE: Pure Charisma Boutique, 560 Main Street, East Orange
CONVENIENCE STORE: 7-Eleven, 247 Freeway Drive, East Orange
DELI: Sandwiches Unlimited, 405 Central Avenue, East Orange and 23 N. Center Street, Orange
ELECTRONICS/CELL PHONES: RK Wireless, 229 Main Street, Orange
FURNITURE: HD Furniture, 623 Central Avenue, East Orange
MEDIA: East Orange Record/Orange Transcript
PHARMACY: E&M Pharmacy, 205 S. Essex Avenue, Orange
RESTAURANT-FULL SERVICE: Dominy Restaurant, 432 Central Avenue, East Orange
RESTAURANT-QUICK SERVICE: Papa John’s, 466 Central Avenue, East Orange
SNEAKERS/SHOES: Snipes, 548 Central Avenue, East Orange
SUPERMARKET: Shop Rite Supermarket, 533 Main Street, East Orange

The 14 “favorite businesses” will be recognized at an awards banquet when the coronavirus pandemic has ended. Meanwhile, ballots from two lucky voters, Adrian Ballot of Elizabeth and Bibi Stewart of East Orange, were drawn that qualified each of them for $100 Shopping Sprees at participating BPAO and OCC businesses.
For more information about the BPAO and the OCC, call (973) 666-8072.
2019 HOLIDAY RECEPTION
Orange Mayor Dwayne Warren (left) offered an overview of new projects and programs in his city during the Holiday Reception, which was sponsored by the BPAO and OCC on December 12, 2019, at Sandwiches Unlimited in Orange. At right, OCC President Robert Masoud enjoys the buffet.
Exhibitors at the Holiday Reception included HANDS (left), Investors Bank (right) and E&M Pharmacy.
 Business & Professional Association of the Oranges (Click here to enter website) 
 Orange Chamber of Commerce