North Jersey News Roundup for July 14, 2020

Young adults are the fastest-growing age group of residents testing positive for the coronavirus in New Jersey, said Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. In April, residents aged 18 to 29 represented 12% of New Jersey’s cases, rising to to 22% of the state’s cases in June.

Areas of the state with higher nonwhite populations, higher density, lower access to health insurance and lower household income have higher COVID-19 infection rates. COVID-19 infection rates in majority nonwhite ZIP codes are double that of the New Jersey’s primarily white ZIP codes. While mostly nonwhite communities saw about 26 people per 1,000 residents infected, majority white communities saw nearly 15 out of 1,000 people test positive for the virus. The Record

As coronavirus cases in the U.S. continued to surge, more states instituted new measures to stem transmission. California imposed new restrictions, including an immediate halt to indoor activities in restaurants, bars, museums, zoos and movie theaters, Oregon banned most indoor social gatherings of more than 10 people and will require people to wear masks outside when they can’t properly social distance and Florida placed restrictions on bars. The Wall Street Journal

The length of time to get coronavirus test results in New Jersey has been increasing steadily for three weeks because of a national demand and a supply shortage as numerous other states are seeing surges in new cases. Turnaround times in New Jersey have risen to more than five days, with CVS test turnaround taking five and seven days to learn results and Walmart at four to six days.

Big crowds and a lack of social distancing at Jersey Shore beaches have state officials concerned about the coronavirus spreading in those settings. Gov. Phil Murphy said many New Jersey residents are not traveling out-of-state for vacations this summer due to the outbreak and are hitting the state’s beaches instead.

New Jersey is delaying all elections scheduled for the next few months until the Nov. 3 general election and postponed reorganization meetings for both local and county political parties because of coronavirus pandemic. The governor’s executive order suspends the state’s requirement that municipal and county political parties hold their reorganizational meetings, instead requiring them be held after the certification of last week’s primary election results.

Two North Jersey Assemblymen pushed back on a plan by state Democrats to delay legislative redistricting in New Jersey. Assemblyman Robert Auth and Chris DePhillips decried changes to delay the drawing of new legislative districts if 2020 census data is not available, with Auth charartising it as a “nothing more than a shameful power grab by Democrat politicians in Trenton.”

NJ Transit trains, buses and light rail may resume operating with full capacity starting July 15, though face coverings will remain required for all staff and passengers. The lifting of the 50% capacity limits will take effect at 8 p.m. In addition to NJ Transit trains and buses, they include private-carrier buses, trains, light rail vehicles and Access Link vehicles. The Daily Record

All 39 state Motor Vehicle agencies closed their lines to new customers on July 13 before noon. The locations hit capacity by 10 a.m, and closed lines, accepting only customers already in line who had a blue numbered ticket.

Assemblymen Brian Bergen (R-25) and Gordon Johnson (D-37) are co-sponsoring a bill to nearly quadruple how many hours recruits spend on self-defense training at police academies. The bill would increase training to 148 hours from 40 at the police academy and require officers to participate in training of 104 hours per year for the remainder of their careers.

The Jersey City Public Schools plan to rotate students between remote learning and in-school instruction when schools reopen in September. Students will return to the classrooms in the fall using a five-day hybrid model in which children will alternate between in-school instruction and remote learning. Parents who wish to keep their children home during the coronavirus pandemic for remote learning will have that option. The Jersey Journal

The Montague School District’s petition to terminate its send-receive relationship with High Point Regional High School will be decided by New Jersey’s education commissioner rather than an administrative law judge. The Montague school board wants to cease sending its high school students to High Point, as it has since September 2014, and resume its former decades-old relationship with Port Jervis High School in New York. New Jersey Herald

And finally… The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey has scheduled eight nights of “Backyard Stage” outdoor productions to take place at its Florham Park home base from July 30-Aug. 9.

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