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Legislative Updates

Governor Murphy Signs Legislation Ending COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

219th Legislative Session COVID-19 Legislative Updates Health Issues Updates Legislative Updates
On June 4, Governor Phil Murphy signed legislation that allows for the end of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency that has been in place since March 9, 2020 while also allowing the Administration to retain the tools necessary to manage the ongoing threat posed by the pandemic. 

The bill, A-5820/S-3866, was negotiated with legislative leadership and sponsored by Senate President Steve Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin. Republicans have been vocal in their criticism of the drafting process of the legislation, as well as the content arguing that the measure does not go far enough to reign in the Governor’s powers and previous Executive Orders.
While the CCSNJ is supportive of measures to safely return New Jersey to pre-pandemic normalcy, the CCSNJ opposed A-5820/S-3866 as it keeps in place certain Executive Orders that will impede the economic recovery of many essential New Jersey businesses. Specifically, the new law maintains 14 executive orders, including Executive Order No. 229which extended a moratorium preventing New Jersey residents from having their utilities disconnected through June 30, 2021. Cable and utility companies stepped up during the pandemic to ensure that as essential services, residents were able to adapt to the changes caused by the pandemic and must be able to resume normal operations to get New Jersey’s economy back on track. 
Additionally, under the bill, the Administration is authorized to issue orders, directives, and waivers under the authority in the Emergency Health Powers Act that are related to:
  • vaccination efforts;
  • testing;
  • health resource and personnel allocation;
  • data collection, retention, sharing, and access;
  • coordination of local health departments;
  • and implementation of any CDC recommendations to prevent the transmission of COVID-19.
This authority lasts until January 11, 2022, and can be extended for 90 days with the passage of a concurrent resolution by the Legislature.
Immediately following the signing of the legislation, Governor Murphy signed Executive Order No. 244, ending the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. Under the legislation, the majority of executive orders issued pursuant to the Public Health Emergency will expire 30 days from today.
To read A-5820/S-3866 (Coughlin/Sweeney), click here.
To read the CCSNJ position on A-5820/S-3866 (Coughlin/Sweeney), click here.
To read Executive Order No. 244, click here.
Should you have any questions, please contact Hilary Chebra, Manager of Government Affairs at  
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