Economy

New Jersey reported 973 new cases of coronavirus on Thursday, bringing the state’s cumulative total to 216,994 lab-confirmed cases since the pandemic began.

Another six people died from complications of COVID-19. The state has now reported 14,408 confirmed deaths and another 1,789 probable fatalities resulting from the virus.

The state’s testing positivity rate was 4.35% on October 11.

The statewide rate of transmission was 1.16, which means for every 100 people who caught the virus they spread it to another 116 residents.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced Tuesday that the state was doling out another $100 million in aid to help residents and business owners recover from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

“All of this will help us keep our economy moving ahead and our families working even as we continue our work to not only defeat the virus, but to deliver even more critical aid to our families and our small businesses,” Murphy said.

The money will be distributed through several existing programs:

Consumer advocates in New Jersey are raising the alarm just days before a moratorium on utility shut-offs is set to expire.

Scores of residents financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic could find themselves again having to pay their utility bills when the shut-off ban ends on Thursday, even as the state continues to see record unemployment.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has signed a state budget that he and top Democratic lawmakers say will help the state recover from the devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic and prepare for a possible second wave of the virus.

The $32.7 billion, nine-month spending plan also includes Murphy’s long-sought tax hike on millionaires, which he said will allow the state to help low-income and middle-class families.

A budget for the remaining nine months of New Jersey’s fiscal year will include a tax hike on millionaires but scrap other proposals by Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, including his “baby bonds” initiative.

The budget agreed to by Murphy and top lawmakers in the Democrat-controlled Legislature became public Tuesday, the same day budget committees in both houses voted on the $32.7 billion plan.

New Jersey millionaires are in for a tax hike.

Gov. Phil Murphy and top lawmakers in the Democrat-controlled state legislature on Thursday announced a deal to raise the income tax rate on people making more than $1 million and give $500 rebates to middle-class families.

New Jersey reported another 478 cases of coronavirus Friday, bringing the state’s cumulative total to 193,422 cases over the last six months.

Another 7 residents died from COVID-19, which means there have now been 14,195 lab-confirmed deaths and 1,783 probable deaths attributed to the outbreak.

The state’s rate of transmission was 1.03, which means everyone who tests positive for the disease was spreading it to at least one other person, and the spot positivity rate for coronavirus tests was 1.81.

Dinner reservations for this weekend are already filling up at Mr. Shrimp, a seafood restaurant and market in Belmar.

Like countless others across the Garden State, the restaurant will open to customers for indoor dining for the first time in more than five months on Friday as the state lifts a major restriction put in place in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Estrella Rivas has always wanted to be a doctor. But Rivas, who came to the United States from El Salvador when she was 5 years old, knew that her immigration status could prevent her from obtaining a professional license in her chosen field.

Rivas said the frustration at not being able to join the medical profession grew even stronger during the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Monday, New Jersey reported 352 new positive cases, pushing the cumulative total to 191,960. The state also reported 8 new confirmed COVID-19 deaths for a total of 14,165 lives lost. The number of probable deaths remains 1,780. The rate of transmission is at .90, meaning for every new COVID-19 case documented, on average it spreads to fewer than one additional person.

Indoor dining to return

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Tuesday proposed a new $32 billion budget that revised the state’s financial plan in light of the economic turmoil caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The “new future” Murphy laid out included a mix of spending cuts, new taxes, and a record-high borrowing request to the legislature. He said it was a recognition of the need for belt-tightening as well as an investment in the state’s recovery from the COVID-19 outbreak, which has sickened nearly 190,000 New Jerseyans.

A New Jersey law that would let the state borrow $9.9 billion to stave off the fiscal emergency caused by the coronavirus pandemic is constitutional, the state Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.

The opinion will allow Gov. Phil Murphy to borrow billions of dollars to spend on recovering from the COVID-19 outbreak, which caused state tax revenues to nosedive and produced record-high unemployment in the state.

The New Jersey Supreme Court heard arguments Wednesday in a case about whether Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration should be allowed to borrow as much as $9.9 billion in response to revenue shortfalls caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The lawsuit pits the Democratic governor and top Democratic state lawmakers against the state’s Republican party and several Republican legislators, who sued to block a plan they say would permit the administration to borrow for expenses unrelated to the pandemic and saddle future generations with a mountain of debt.

New Jersey reported another 699 cases of coronavirus Friday, adding up to a total of 181,660 cumulative cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.

Officials also announced another 10 deaths related to coronavirus. The outbreak has caused 13,944 lab-confirmed fatalities and another 1,875 probable deaths.

Jump in positive cases sets off ‘alarms’

The New Jersey task force formed by Gov. Phil Murphy to look into the state’s generous tax break programs released its final report Thursday, which contains new allegations of lax oversight among regulators and impropriety on the part of hired consultants.

“The [Economic Development Authority] has fostered a permissive culture of ‘getting to yes’ with applicant companies,” said Ron Chen, a Rutgers Law professor and chair of the task force, “which resulted in a predisposition of EDA personnel to approve awards for tax incentives and at higher amounts when possible.”

New Jersey officials on Monday reported 216 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the statewide total to 173,611.

The toll of confirmed deaths increased by 20 to 13,773, with 1,856 probable deaths.

Uptick in infection rate concerns officials

Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday that New Jersey’s rate of infection has gone above 1.0 for the first time in ten weeks.

As of July 4, the rate was at 1.03; meaning for every one person infected, it leads to at least one person getting infected.

N.J. Coronavirus Recovery: Casinos, Amusement Parks Reopen For Business

Jul 2, 2020

New Jersey reported another 539 cases of coronavirus Thursday, bringing the cumulative total over the course of the pandemic to 172,356.

The state also announced another 27 deaths. All told there have been 13,251 confirmed fatalities and 1,854 probable deaths due to COVID-19.

Open for business

Casinos are among several businesses reopening across New Jersey Thursday amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Though casinos can welcome gamblers, they won’t be able to serve alcohol or let patrons smoke. They must also cap admittance at 25% of capacity.

On Wednesday, New Jersey reported an additional 423 positive tests for COVID-19. The total number of positive cases now stands at 171,928.

An additional 45 deaths were reported, raising the toll to 13,224 confirmed deaths. There are also 1,854 probable deaths.

Despite language, Murphy says no private development at Liberty State Park

N.J. coronavirus recovery: Indoor dining is on pause

Jun 30, 2020

New Jersey reported 156 new COVID-19 cases and an additional 18 confirmed deaths from the coronavirus on Monday.

The state has recorded a total of 171,272 cases and 14,992 deaths.

Currently, there are 978 people in hospitals across the state and 225 in intensive care.

Indoor dining on pause until ‘a later date’

New Jersey reported another 406 cases of coronavirus Thursday, bringing the state’s total number of residents who tested positive for COVID-19 to 170,196.

Another 26 people were confirmed to have died from complications of the virus. The state also reported 1,854 probable deaths throughout the course of the pandemic, the first time it has released such a figure. It means New Jersey’s death toll now stands at 14,872.

Deaths spike as state begins counting ‘probable’ fatalities

Should the coronavirus pandemic devastate state revenues across the country, as is widely expected, New Jersey will be among the states most dependent on federal aid to keep itself running.

That precarious position — relying on a president and Congress who have been willing to let New Jersey bleed money in the past — is the product of decades of poor financial planning and spending instead of saving.

People wanting to be anything from an accountant to an acupuncturist in New Jersey need to obtain professional licenses before they can ply their trade.

A proposal in the state Legislature would make certain immigrants living in the state eligible to apply for and obtain those licenses, which supporters said would invigorate the economy and bring some immigrants out of the shadows.

Democratic lawmakers in New Jersey are proposing a law to make work schedules more predictable for low-wage employees and give them a guaranteed 12-hour break between shifts.

It comes as cities and states across the country consider similar “fair work week” legislation to help workers in the retail and hospitality industries better plan their work schedules while leaving enough time in the day for their personal lives.

Bernice McClain, of Lindenwold, is enjoying retirement.

“I don’t watch the clock,” she said. “The clock watches me.”

But now the former caseworker is applying for a job with the U.S. Census.

“I still enjoy talking to people and working with people. And like I said, I’m retired. Extra money,” she added.

McClain was one of many people who took part in census job fairs in Camden County on Thursday, where residents could apply to be census takers.

It’s not all about the trains.

A survey of people who regularly take New Jersey Transit buses found they often show up late because of heavy traffic, and that bus stops frequently lack amenities that protect riders from the elements.

The survey of 250 bus riders was released Tuesday by the Tri-State Transportation Campaign, a transit-advocacy nonprofit focused on New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut.

“In 20 years of being in the legislature, I find this bill the most confusing,” said state Sen. Linda Greenstein, D-Middlesex, during a Trenton hearing Thursday.

Yet just a few hours later, she and other lawmakers on the Senate Labor Committee voted 3-1 in favor of legislation that critics say would take money out of the pockets of some freelance workers and put others out of business altogether. Greenstein said she hoped additional amendments would address their concerns.

Greeted by throngs of vocal protesters, South Jersey Democratic power broker George Norcross told legislators at the Statehouse in Trenton on Monday that the state’s generous tax incentive program has succeeded in revitalizing distressed areas, particularly Camden.

The controversial insurance executive testified that, despite what critics say, Camden has turned a corner, in large part due to investment spurred by state tax breaks.

An association representing consumer reporting agencies filed a lawsuit in federal court Thursday seeking to block a New Jersey state law that requires credit reports be made available in Spanish and 10 other languages.

The Washington, D.C.-based Consumer Data Industry Association claims the new state law is preempted by the federal credit reporting statute, and that it violates the First Amendment by “compelling speech” in other languages.

Companies that had been sued for workplace issues or were facing regulatory penalties still routinely received tax incentive awards from New Jersey, according to one of the top legal officials at the state’s Economic Development Authority.

Marcus Saldutti, senior legislative officer at the regulatory body, made the comments Thursday during the fourth public meeting of a task force set up to look into the state’s $11 billion tax break system.

State officials say New Jersey Transit will restore continuous service to midtown Manhattan on a popular rail line, thanks to an increased number of qualified engineers and strides in installing positive train control, a federally-mandated automatic braking system.

At a Monday press conference, Gov. Phil Murphy said the so-called one-seat rides would resume during off-peak hours on the Raritan Valley Line on November 4.

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