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New Jersey Enters Stage 2 Of Reopening, Murphy Says Stage 3 Could Come In A Month

WCBS Radio New York logo WCBS Radio New York 6/15/2020 Sean Adams
a bench on a sidewalk © Provided by WCBS Radio New York TRENTON, N.J. (WCBS 880) -- More restrictions are being lifted in New Jersey as the state enters Stage 2 of its reopening Monday.

Restaurants across the state can begin offering outdoor dining and non-essential retailers can also allow customers back indoors.

Both businesses must follow safety and sanitizing protocols. Tables at restaurants must be spaced six feet apart and stores are limited to 50% capacity. Customers and employees must also wear masks or face coverings.

Gov. Phil Murphy says he plans on celebrating by going out to dinner with his wife and three of their four kids.

"I cannot wait to get there," Murphy said. "Slowly but surely we're getting back on our feet."

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Stage 2 also includes library curbside pick-up and outdoor areas open to patrons, the Motor Vehicle Commission is offering drop-off and pick-up service, child care centers are open, parents and children can enter schools to clean out lockers, and real estate open houses can resume. Bike shops, car and boat dealers are back as well as the car wash. Yard and garage sales are permitted and fireworks displays are also a go.

Residents in Ridgewood were both eager and cautious to enter this new phase.

"I'm looking forward to being out again," one man said.

"Probably going outside to eat, hanging outside, it's going to be great, I can't wait," one woman said.

"Actually I'm going to probably stay inside a little bit more, get my coffee, my husband has diabetes, so I might kind of keep my distance," another woman said.

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Houses of worship were allowed to reopen for public services across the state this weekend, with capacity limits. Worshippers are also required to wear face coverings and keep 6 feet apart unless they are family members.

Starting June 22, beauty salons, barber shops, cosmetology shops, day and medical spas, hair braiding shops, massage parlors, nail salons, tanning salons, tattoo parlors and electrology facilities will be allowed to reopen. Pools as well as all outdoor recreational and entertainment businesses that were previously closed - with the exceptions of amusement parks, water parks, and arcades -- will also be allowed to reopen.

Also on June 22, low-risk outdoor sports, including tennis and golf, will be able to resume competitions and medium-risk and high-risk outdoor sports, including basketball and soccer, will be able to resume non-contact drills and practices.

Medium-risk outdoor sports will likely be able to resume competitions on July 6. High-risk outdoor sports, like football, will most likely be able to resume full practices and competitions on July 20, the governor said.

Medium-risk outdoor sports will likely be able to resume competitions on July 6. High-risk outdoor sports, like football, will most likely be able to resume full practices and competitions on July 20, he said.

Summer camps will be allowed to reopen on July 6, which is when outdoor graduations will also be allowed.

Gyms and health clubs are expected to be able to reopen soon after, but an exact date has not been set.

a book shelf filled with books: Sean Adams/WCBS 880 © Provided by WCBS Radio New York Sean Adams/WCBS 880

Looking ahead, Murphy told WCBS 880 that Stage 3 could come next month.

"I'm not going to necessarily give you a date, but I think a month from now if we keep making the progress that we've made over the past month on the health care data I think you're going to see us comfortably getting into Stage 3," Murphy told WCBS 880 anchor Wayne Cabot.

Murphy tweeted Monday that there were 274 new cases of COVID-19 reported since Sunday, bringing the state's total number of cases to 167,103.

Of those cases, 1,351 patients are in hospitals, 402 are in critical or intensive care and 267 are on ventilators.

Murphy said another 52 residents of the state had died from the coronavirus. New Jersey's death toll is now 12,676.

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