April 14, 2020

Coronavirus Update #26

Dear Resident,

I hope that everyone who celebrates had a meaningful holiday weekend.  Thank you to those who shared their pictures and stories.  Many said they were able to share a ‘virtual’ table with relatives, including ones who live far away and are not normally seated at the holiday dinner table.  Although this may have been a far cry from our “normal” celebrations, perhaps we will all come away with a greater appreciation for the precious time we do get to spend in-person with friends and family.

Because Mother Nature does not pause for Coronavirus, the National Weather Service released a High Wind Warning and then a Tornado Watch for our area.  Sunday afternoon, the Marlboro Office of Emergency Management led by Chief Pezzullo and my staff were in contact with County OEM and JCP&L and residents were sent a letter on how to prepare and important numbers to keep at hand. High winds brought power outages across the County and in Marlboro, but they were restored fairly quickly and there was no significant property damage. We are very thankful.  However, this serves as a reminder that all households should have an emergency kit ready at all times.   Visit https://www.ready.gov/kit to ensure your family is prepared. 

Testing and Current Cases –

  • Today Governor Murphy reported that there are 4,059 new positives in the state with a total of 68,824 positives.
  • 3,990 cases in Monmouth County
  • 285 cases in Marlboro
  • PNC will open for testing at 8am tomorrow morning.  You will only be tested if you are a NJ resident and have respiratory symptoms. The PNC site in Holmdel has not been reaching their daily testing capacity of 500 tests. 
  • There are 66 public testing sites in NJ.  The list is available www.covid19.nj.gov/testing

Marlboro Bulk/Spring Pickup – I remind all residents that due to the COVID-19 State of Emergency restrictions, the Spring Curbside Bulk pickup is delayed.  The pick-up which is performed by a Township contractor will be rescheduled.  The new dates will be sent to residents via email, posted on the website, social media, and sent via SWIFT 911 once the State of Emergency is lifted and / or distancing restrictions are relaxed.  Please do not place any bulk items curbside until further notice. 

Internet and Phone Service – Governor Murphy signed Executive Order 126 declaring that no cable company can shut-off for non-payment or downgrade service while the State of Emergency remains in effect.   Further, any customer whose service was disconnected due to non-payment after March 16 must be reconnected upon request. 

NJ Labor Department – Record unemployment claims continue to flood the NJ Labor Department.  They have expanded the call center capacity, automated more processes, and provided laptops for an additional 500 employees to work from home.  The update is HERE. How to file a claim https://myunemployment.nj.gov/ .

A bill will be signed today to allow employees forced to take care of family members due to COVID get up to 12 weeks of Family Leave in a 24 month period without losing their job.  

New Guidelines for Essential Retail Stores – New rules went into effect Friday.  We are in contact with our stores and are updating the Grocery Store list on our website as information is received.  The rules, in part, state:

  • Stores must limit the number of people in the store to 50% of their capacity.
  • All customers and employees must wear face coverings.  Please note that face coverings do not have to be surgical or N95 as they remain in short supply for first responders and medical professionals.  Instructions to make a mask from cloth, both sew and no-sew options, as well as how to use and keep clean is available on the CDC Website.   
  • Stores must provide special shopping hours for high-risk individuals, erect physical barriers between customers and cashiers and baggers where practicable, and regularly sanitize areas used by their employees.

NJ Department of Children and Families – These are uncomfortable conversations, but it is necessary should one or both parents get sick and is a vital part of disaster/pandemic preparedness.  Power of Attorney guidance is provided HERE. 

Multi-State Council – Yesterday the Governors of 6 surrounding states,  including New Jersey, joined to form a Council with the goal of getting people back to work and restoring the economy.  The Council will include one health expert, one economic development expert and Respective Chiefs of Staff from Each State. The Council will develop a fully integrated regional framework to gradually lift the stay at home orders while minimizing the risk of spreading the virus.  In addition to New Jersey the states are, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Connecticut. Today Massachusetts joined the Council. 

Thank you - We are so very grateful to the people on the front lines.  Our first responders, nurses, doctors, and medical personnel, people who work in grocery stores and restaurants, those in essential businesses that go to work every day. They are our heroes and we cannot thank them enough.  But we are going to try.  We will be putting together a video comprised of Marlboro residents’ thanks yous.  Take a picture or a make a short video.  It can be about a particular person, a group or a general thank you.  Many thanks to Councilwoman Randi Marder for spearheading this program.  Instructions: Marlboro Thanks Our Heroes

I look forward to seeing everyone’s submissions.  Have a good night. 

Mayor Jon Hornik