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Posted on: September 1, 2020

Coronavirus: News Updates September 2020

COVID-19 Updates

September 21, 2020

  • BH has 4 active community cases
  • The transmission rate has risen to 1.12

There are now 4 active cases in Berkeley Heights. Please wear masks in Berkeley Heights AND when travelling, and practice proper health protocols. 

By the Numbers:

  • 396 new cases in New Jersey; 200,154 totalBH now has 4 Active Cases
  • 21 new cases in Union County; 17,466 total
  • 5 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,278 total
  • 1 new death in Union County; 1,191 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.12
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 4 active cases (0 VPI, 4 community)
    • 298 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 302 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 349 people remain hospitalized
  • 87 people are in critical condition
  • 32 people are on ventilators

Coronavirus Cases in NJ Surpass 200,000 - The total number of coronavirus cases in NJ has now surpassed 200,000. However, NJ also maintains one of the lowest positivity rates and one of the best testing capacities in the nation.

Governor Livingston to Launch Fall Sports Season Next Week - Next week, the boys and girls soccer, field hockey, girls tennis, and football seasons are slated to begin. Tickets will still be sold, allowing parents to watch their children compete. Spectators will be required to wear face masks and should follow social distancing guidelines. 

New Jersey School-Age Tuition Assistance Program - For families that earn $75,000 or less, they will be eligible to apply for the New Jersey School-Age Tuition Assistance Program. With a $150M budget, the tuition will help pay for the childcare costs for students between 5 and 13. Families can apply now at ChildCareNJ.gov.

Transmission Rate Highest Level in 7 Weeks - The transmission rate has risen to 1.12, the highest since August 7th. To stop the outbreak from expanding, it needs to drop below 1.

NJ Companies Fined for Price-Gouging - With consumers complaining about companies price gouging, false advertising, and exploiting the coronavirus pandemic for financial gain, the state has levied fines against them. To report business violations, visit the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs. 

See How Your Town Fared - For comprehensive data on the deaths from the coronavirus pandemic by town, check out the following article.

How to Volunteer and Donate - For a list of places to volunteer and donate to during this pandemic, please read the article. 

September 19, 2020

  • BH now has 4 active community cases
  • The transmission rate has risen to 1.10

There are now 4 active cases in Berkeley Heights. The two newest cases involve a female in her 60s and a young adult male. Please wear masks in Berkeley Heights AND when travelling, and practice proper health protocols. 

BH now has 4 Active Cases

By the Numbers:

  • 489 new cases in New Jersey; 199,309 total
  • 19 new cases in Union County; 17,415 total
  • 7 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,273 total
  • 0 new deaths in Union County; 1,190 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.10
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 4 active cases (0 VPI, 4 community)
    • 298 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 302 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 412 people remain hospitalized
  • 89 people are in critical condition
  • 27 people are on ventilators

Bill Advanced to Impose Fines on Non-Maskers in Stores - The NJ appropriations committee has approved a bill that would send a $50 to $500 fine to people who refuse to wear masks in stores. The bill still needs to pass the NJ Assembly and Senate, which are both controlled by Democrats.

COVID-19 Found in Sewage at College - Traces of COVID-19 were found in the sewage at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, resulting in 300 students at campus having to quarantine. Water testing is an early signal for COVID-19, as asymptomatic individuals can have it show up in their urine.

Rising Transmission Rate - NJ’s COVID-19 transmission rate has ticked up again to 1.1. For the virus’s presence to decrease, it needs to drop below 1. Additionally, the COVID-19 breakdown by age is highest among residents 30-49.

More than 200K in NJ to Receive Letter on Stimulus Payment - The IRS is sending out letters to over 200K in NJ to encourage people to complete the steps to see if they qualify for a stimulus payment from the CARES Act. These people are those who don’t typically file tax returns. The IRS asks that people register by October 15th.

September 17, 2020

  • BH has 2 active cases

There are now 2 active cases in Berkeley Heights. Please wear masks in Berkeley Heights AND when travelling, and practice proper health protocols. 

By the Numbers:

  • 617 new cases in New Jersey; 198,361 total
  • 15 new cases in Union County; 17,367 totalBig Ten Football To Play This Fall
  • 24 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,266 total
  • 0 new deaths in Union County; 1,190 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.07
  • Berkeley Heights: 
    • 2 active cases (0 VPI, 2 community)
    • 298 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 300 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 431 people remain hospitalized
  • 85 people are in critical condition
  • 40 people are on ventilators

Big Ten to Play Football This Season - Despite initially postponing the football season, the Big Ten has now decided to play this fall. The season will start on October 24th, intending for a eight-game regular season with a conference championship.

Reforms to NJ Nursing Homes - Nearly half of lab-confirmed deaths have been in nursing homes in NJ. Given the high death toll in nursing homes, more money will be provided to nursing homes to help with staffing, raise worker wages, and purchase protective equipment.

COVID-19 Cases Nearly Double Since Rowan U. Reopening - With over 4,000 students on campus, even more than Rutgers, Rowan University has witnessed a spike in coronavirus cases. Residents in Glassboro in Gloucester County have expressed their unease over the spike in cases in their town.

What’s Reopening - For a summary of the arts/entertainment venues and other recreational destinations throughout NJ, please read the following article. 

Where is the Coronavirus in NJ? - For specific numbers on coronavirus cases in each county and town, check out the following article.

September 15, 2020

  • BH has 3 active cases
  • California, Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada, and Ohio has been removed from the quarantine advisory list

There are now 3 active cases in Berkeley Heights. The newest cases involve a young adult male and a preschool age female not enrolled in school. Please wear masks in Berkeley Heights AND when travelling, and practice proper health protocols. 

By the Numbers:BH now has 3 Active Cases

  • 498 new cases in New Jersey; 197,404 total
  • 20 new cases in Union County; 17,337 total
  • 13 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,242 total
  • 1 new death in Union County; 1,190 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.06
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 3 active cases (0 VPI, 2 community)
    • 297 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 300 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 406 people remain hospitalized
  • 90 people are in critical condition
  • 35 people are on ventilators

No Evidence of In-Classroom Transmission - Governor Murphy has stated that despite new coronavirus cases among students and faculty in schools, there is no evidence of in-classroom transmission.

Updated Quarantine Advisory - Governor Murphy has removed California, Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada, and Ohio from the quarantine advisory. The new state list: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Iowa, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. All individuals travelling to NJ from these states should self-quarantine for 14 days.

NJ Transit to Release Ride Capacity Feature on App - NJ Transit will be releasing a “how full is my ride” feature on its transit app. NJ Transit hopes to dissuade people from entering packed trains or buses, which inhibits social distancing.

NJ Unlikely to Close All Schools - Several schools have suspended in-person classes due to coronavirus cases among students or faculty. However, there is currently no evidence they were transmitted in the classroom, and Governor Murphy does not expect to implement all-remote learning in all schools.

Murphy Extends Workers Compensation - Governor Murphy has signed a bill that permits essential workers who contract the coronavirus to qualify for workers compensation without having to prove they contracted it during their job. Business groups have condemned the decision.

September 13, 2020

  • BH has 2 active cases
  • NJ MVC Wait Times Reduced

There are now 2 active cases in Berkeley Heights. One case is a female in her 20s, and the other is a female in her 50s. Please wear masks in Berkeley Heights AND when travelling, and practice proper health protocols. 

NJ MVC Wait Times Reduced

By the Numbers:

  • 306 new cases in New Jersey; 196,634 total
  • 17 new cases in Union County; 17,315 total
  • 13 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,242 total
  • 0 new deaths in Union County; 1,189 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.06
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 2 active cases (0 VPI, 2 community)
    • 296 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 298 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 444 people remain hospitalized
  • 98 people are in critical condition
  • 37 people are on ventilators 

Murphy Signs Bills to Reduce Long MVC Lines - Governor Murphy has signed a bill that would let seniors renew their licenses online and another bill that would provide new state residents 120 days to register their vehicle and receive a NJ license. This will reduce the wait times at the MVC.

NJ Schools to Unveil “Start Strong” Exam - As many students may have fallen behind on their learning, the state’s Department of Education is introducing a “Start Strong” exam for public schools. Schools will have the option to provide a 60 minute exam to determine if a student has fallen behind.

Respondents Refuse To Cooperate With Contact Tracer Call - 59% of people who receive contact tracer calls are refusing to cooperate. Governor Murphy asks that everyone cooperate in order to save people’s lives.

Hospitals Ready Duel-Testing for “Twindemic” - With flu season coming up, hospitals in NJ are preparing for both COVID-19 and the flu. People should continue their current health practices, like wearing a mask, to also mitigate the severity of the flu season. 

September 9, 2020

  • BH has 1 new active case
  • Delaware, Maryland, Ohio, and West Virginia are now on the quarantine list. There are now 35 states on the list.

There is now 1 active case in Berkeley Heights. The case is a female who is in her 20s. Please wear masks in Berkeley Heights AND when travelling, and practice proper health protocols. 

Berkeley Heights has 1 new active case

By the Numbers:

  • 600 new cases in New Jersey; 194,990 total
  • 12 new cases in Union County; 17,248 total
  • 12 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,220 total
  • 7 new deaths in Union County; 1,189 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.10
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 1 active case (0 VPI, 1 community)
    • 296 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 297 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 423 people remain hospitalized
  • 63 people are in critical condition
  • 31 people are on ventilators 

Halloween Trick-o-Treating Is Still On - Despite counties like Los Angeles in California canceling Halloween, Governor Murphy still intends to have trick-o-treating this Halloween. 

Here’s What Schools Look Like Across NJ - Many schools have reopened this past Tuesday.  354 school districts are hybrid, 172 are all-remote,  and 59 are all in-person. For images of school districts across the state, read the following article.

Gyms at Hotels to Reopen - Gyms located in hotels, motels, condominiums, and office complexes can now reopen. They are expected to follow the same rules as public gyms. For a list of rules, please check out the following article.

Updated Quarantine Advisory - Governor Murphy has added Delaware, Maryland, Ohio, and West Virginia to the quarantine advisory. The new quarantine list: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. All individuals travelling to NJ from these states should self-quarantine for 14 days.

September 7, 2020

  • NO CHANGES in BH active cases!

By the Numbers:

  • 968 new cases in New Jersey; 194,390 total
  • 8 new cases in Union County; 17,218 total
  • 13 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,208 total
  • 2 new deaths in Union County; 1,182 totalNO CHANGES in BH Active Cases!
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.09
  • Berkeley Heights: 
    • NO CHANGES
    • 0 active cases 
    • 296 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 296 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 389 people remain hospitalized
  • 79 people are in critical condition
  • 29 people are on ventilators

How New Jersey Looks Different in 2020 - No doubt, NJ looks starkly different because of the coronavirus pandemic. To compare places like the beach then and now, check out the following article that features interactive pictures.

New Jersey Approved for $300 Unemployment Benefit - NJ was approved for the $300 unemployment benefit created by President Trump. It will act as a partial replacement to the $600 benefit from the CARES Act. Since the state applied late for the benefit, it will take some time before unemployed individuals can receive the assistance.

Governor Murphy Issues 58 Rules for Indoor Dining - Indoor dining has reopened. Rules for customers include wearing face masks until the food arrives, eating only when seated, and recommending that they provide their phone number if needed for contact tracing. For further rules, check out the following article.

HS Football in New Jersey - With many high schools in NJ allowing football, the season will undoubtedly look different to ensure students’ safety. NJ will likely look to other states, which already have started their football seasons. For an idea of how that will look like, check out the following article.

Reporting COVID-19 Violations - If you believe that an individual, group, or business may be seriously violating COVID-19 rules which put others in danger, please check out the form here.

How to Volunteer and Donate - For a comprehensive list of places to volunteer and donate to during this pandemic, please read the article. 

September 4, 2020

  • Indoor dining, movie theatres, indoor music venues have resumed!

By the Numbers:

  • 827 new cases in New Jersey; 193,422 total
  • 22 new cases in Union County; 17,187 totalIndoor Dining Resumes
  • 14 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,195 total
  • 1 new death in Union County; 1,186 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 1.03
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 0 active cases 
    • 296 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 296 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 466 people remain hospitalized
  • 95 people are in critical condition
  • 40 people are on ventilators

Follow the Rules at Indoor Dining - Governor Murphy urges restaurants and residents to follow proper health guidelines when dining indoors. Despite rising numbers, the state does not plan to backtrack on indoor dining. However, the 25% capacity limit will only be increased when the state’s COVID-19 numbers fall.

Cooperate with Contact Tracers - Contact tracers are having difficulty contacting people who may have been exposed to the virus. Please take the phone call to prevent the spread of the virus and help reopen the NJ economy.

Promising Numbers for HS Sports - A survey of athletic trainers at high schools has indicated low positivity rates among high school athletes. While these low numbers are promising, current fall athletes should still practice cautiously.

Reporting COVID-19 Violations - If you believe that an individual, group, or business may be seriously violating COVID-19 rules which put others in danger, please check out the form here.

School Districts Plan to Go Remote - More than 240 school districts have planned to start the school year all-remote. Over 400 schools plan for a hybrid model, while 68 plan for in-person classes. For specific school districts in each county, check out the following article. 

What’s Reopening - For a summary of the arts/entertainment venues and other recreational destinations throughout NJ, please read the following article. 


September 2, 2020

  • BH active cases are now 0!
  • Indoor dining to resume Friday
  • Movie theatres, indoor music venues to reopen Friday
  • Montana and Alaska added to NJ quarantine advisory list

Berkeley Heights now has 0 ACTIVE CASES

By the Numbers:

  • 635 new cases in New Jersey; 192,595 total
  • 7 new cases in Union County;  17,137 total
  • 16 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,181 total
  • 0 new deaths in Union County; 1,185 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 0.96
  • Berkeley Heights: 
    • 0 active cases 
    • 293 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 296 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 489 people remain hospitalized
  • 101 people are in critical condition
  • 36 people are on ventilators

Updated Quarantine Advisory - Governor Murphy has readded Montana and Alaska on the quarantine advisory. The new state list: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, Nevada, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Virgin Islands, and Wisconsin. All individuals travelling to NJ from these states should self-quarantine for 14 days.

Could Indoor Dining be Banned Again? - According to Governor Murphy, if COVID-19 boomerangs, indoor dining could be banned again. The transmission rate has now risen to 0.96.  Please continue to exercise proper health protocols by wearing a mask and socially distancing to ensure indoor dining is not banned again.

Reopening Summary - With Governor Murphy reopening indoor dining, movie theatres, and other facilities, as well as expanding capacity limits, check out the following article for a summary of everything that’s happening.

Guide to Rules for NJ Gyms - Gyms have reopened. All visitors must wear a mask and take a temperature check. For more rules, check out the following article for a guide to the rules.

School Districts Plan to Go Remote - More than 190 school districts have planned to start the school year all-remote. For specific school districts in each county, check out the following article. 

August 31, 2020

  • Indoor dining to resume Friday
  • Movie theatres, indoor music venues to reopen Friday
  • Capacity limits for weddings, funerals, religious services increased

By the Numbers:

  • 640 new cases in New Jersey; 191,960 total
  • 24 new cases in Union County;  17,103 totalIndoor Dining to Resume Friday
  • 12 new deaths in New Jersey; 14,165 total
  • 1 new death in Union County; 1,185 total
  • Rate of Transmission: 0.90
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • NO CHANGES
    • 3 active cases (0 VPI, 3 community)
    • 293 closed cases (137 recovered from LTC, 55 LTC deaths, 4 community deaths)
    • Total of 296 cases

Hospitalizations:

  • 484 people remain hospitalized
  • 103 people are in critical condition
  • 36 people are on ventilators

Indoor Dining to Resume Friday - Restaurants will be able to reopen for indoor dining at 25% capacity on Friday.

Movie Theatres to Reopen Friday - Movie theatres will be able to reopen on Friday. They will operate at the lesser of either 25% capacity or 150 moviegoers. Families/groups that purchase tickets will be able to sit together, but other moviegoers must remain socially distanced. Except when eating or drinking, moviegoers should be wearing masks.

Indoor Music Venues to Reopen Friday - Indoor music venues will be able to reopen on Friday with the same capacity restrictions as movie theatres. Venues can serve food, and patrons should wear masks and socially distance. However, no standing-room or general admission shows will be permitted.

Increased Capacity Limits for Indoor Services - NJ has increased the capacity limit for religious services, weddings, funerals, memorial services, and political activities. Indoor gatherings will be capped at the lesser of either 25% or 150 people. Guests are expected to socially distance and wear masks at all times except when sitting down.

Guide to Rules for NJ Gyms - With gyms reopening on September 1st, check out the following article for a guide to the rules.

School Districts Plan to Go Remote - More than 180 school districts have planned to start the school year all-remote. For specific school districts in each county, check out the following article. 

Click here for the updates from August 2020

Governor Livingston student Desmond Lam contributed to these reports. 

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