Governor Phil Murphy

This Week in New Jersey: June 19, 2020


Governor Murphy Announces Support for Key Environmental Justice Legislation

Standing alongside Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver, Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine McCabe, Senator Troy Singleton, Assemblyman John McKeon, and environmental advocates Kim Gaddy, Dr. Nicky Sheats, and Dr. Ana Baptiste, Governor Phil Murphy announced his support for key environmental justice legislation for overburdened communities. The legislation (S232) requires the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to evaluate environmental and public health impacts of certain facilities on overburdened communities when reviewing certain permit applications.

“Pursuing an aggressive environmental justice agenda has been a top priority of my Administration,” said Governor Murphy. “Decades of inaction have led to environmental disparities throughout the state, creating overburdened communities that are unjustly exposed to significant air and water pollutants. We must prevent further environmental burdens on residents in our urban, rural, and low-income areas, which are predominantly communities of color. By supporting this legislation, we are taking a momentous step forward in achieving that goal.”

“Despite New Jersey's many environmental gains, our state has a long history of environmental pollutants disproportionately affecting our disadvantaged communities. It has been weighing them down for decades,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver, who serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs. “We have seen the impact that environmental inequality has had on our residents’ quality of life and health. The legislation proposed by Senator Singleton, Assemblyman McKeon and our Administration would create a new layer of protection for the communities that have paid the price for pollution that is created by us all.”

“In the last fifty years, many federal and state environmental laws have enabled us to make great strides in improving the quality of our air, land and water, but gaps in the law too often prevent us from ensuring environmental justice for our low-income and minority communities,” said New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe. “While environmental laws broadly protect public health and the environment, they too often fail to account for the fact that facilities that cause some of the worst pollution tend to be concentrated in low-income and minority communities, leading to disparities in exposure and in public health in those communities. I applaud Senator Singleton and Assemblyman McKeon for their leadership and attention to this injustice. Nowhere else in the country has a commitment to environmental justice been this strong. I hope others will follow New Jersey’s lead, and pledge my support to our communities to help bring this law to Governor Murphy’s desk.”


Governor Murphy Announces Plan to Develop the New Jersey Wind Port: First Purpose-Built Offshore Wind Port in the U.S.

Governor Phil Murphy announced plans to develop the New Jersey Wind Port, a first-in-the-nation infrastructure investment that will provide a location for essential staging, assembly, and manufacturing activities related to offshore wind projects on the East Coast. The Wind Port has the potential to create up to 1,500 manufacturing, assembly, and operations jobs, as well as hundreds of construction jobs in New Jersey. Manufacturing and marshalling projects supported by the Wind Port will drive economic growth in Salem County, in South Jersey, and throughout the state. The State is committed to using union labor to construct the Wind Port and intends to set a new standard for inclusion of minority and women workers and business owners. Construction is targeted to begin in 2021. 

“Offshore wind is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to not only protect our environment but also greatly expand our state economy in a way that has immediate impacts and paves the way for long-term growth,” said Governor Murphy. “The New Jersey Wind Port will create thousands of high-quality jobs, bring millions of investment dollars to our state, and establish New Jersey as the national capital of offshore wind. This is a vital step forward in achieving our goal of reaching 7,500 megawatts of offshore wind power by 2035 and 100 percent clean energy by 2050.” 


Governor Murphy Signs Executive Order Allowing Personal Care Service Facilities to Open Effective June 22

Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order No. 154, allowing personal care service facilities to reopen to the public on Monday, June 22 at 6:00 a.m., provided the facilities comply with standards issued by the Division of Consumer Affairs and Department of Health.  

“We’re able to confidently announce this important step in our restart and recovery because the health metrics tell us we can,” said Governor Murphy. “With the proper health and safety protocols in place, personal care business owners who are anxious get back to serving their customers and communities will have the opportunity to do so.” 

Under the Governor’s Executive Order, personal care service facilities include:  

  • Cosmetology shops;
  • Barber shops;
  • Beauty salons;
  • Hair braiding shops;
  • Nail salons;
  • Electrology facilities;
  • Spas, including day spas and medical spas, at which solely elective and cosmetic medical procedures are performed;
  • Massage parlors;
  • Tanning salons; and
  • Tattoo parlors.  

Governor Murphy Signs Executive Order Allowing for Limited In-Person Instruction at Institutions of Higher Education and Trade and Training Schools Beginning July 1

Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order No. 155, which will allow in-person clinical, lab, and hands-on programming at institutions of higher education to resume as of July 1, 2020 with enhanced health and safety protocols. Executive Order No. 155 will also allow trade and training schools to reopen on July 1 provided specific health and safety polices are in place.  As part of this process, the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education has issued Restart Standards for all New Jersey Institutions of Higher Education that can guide the reopening and assist institutions as they prepare for next steps.

“As we move forward in our restart and recovery, these institutions will play a huge role. They are where our future workforce is being created,” said Governor Murphy. “While New Jersey continues to face the impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, I am pleased that we are able to take this step forward for our students and educators.”

“Sustained positive public health trends have allowed New Jersey to enter stage two on the road back to our ‘new normal,’ and after a period of uncertainty, we are pleased to be at a point where we can safely begin restarting campus operations for students, faculty and staff,” said Dr. Zakiya Smith Ellis, Secretary of Higher Education. “An equitable restart of operations must be done carefully through an iterative, staged process that balances the desire to move forward with concerns for public health. We know many students prefer learning in-person, particularly those who experience hardship and whose home environments are not conducive to online education. As we seek to ensure appropriate measures are in place so educational activity can continue, the health and safety of the entire campus community will remain our priority.”


AG Grewal Issues Statewide Order Requiring Law Enforcement Agencies to Identify Officers Who Commit Serious Disciplinary Violations

Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal ordered all law enforcement agencies in New Jersey to begin publicly identifying officers who commit serious disciplinary violations. Under the order, going forward every state, county, and local law enforcement agency in New Jersey will be required to annually publish a list of officers who were fired, demoted, or suspended for more than five days due to a disciplinary violation, with the first list to be published no later than December 31, 2020.  

“For decades, New Jersey has not disclosed the identities of law enforcement officers who commit serious disciplinary violations,” said Attorney General Grewal. “Today, we end the practice of protecting the few to the detriment of the many. Today, we recommit ourselves to building a culture of transparency and accountability in law enforcement.”