New Jersey Gives Local Governments Power to Limit Short-Term Rentals

new jersey coronavirus
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy tours a field medical station at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus last week. (Edwin J. Torres for Governor’s Office).

New powers for New Jersey’s local and county governments to restrict short-term rentals are taking effect Sunday night, part of the effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The state’s emergency management director, state police Col. Patrick Callahan, issued an administrative order aimed at hotels, motels, guest houses and private residences.

The additional local authority does not extend to people housed under a state-led shelter effort, to those in temporary residence under emergency or other housing assistance, or to health-care workers staying somewhere on a temporary basis.

Gov. Phil Murphy said shore communities have reported people trying to temporarily relocate there from areas hard-hit by the coronavirus spread, but those communities can lack the health-care infrastructure that a surge in patients would require.

Murphy urged state residents to remain in their primary residences during the COVID-19 crisis.

There were nearly 3,500 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New Jersey over the prior day, pushing the total past 37,500, Murphy announced Sunday. The governor said 71 people died, bringing the state’s death toll to 917, which Murphy tweeted were “917 reasons to stay home and do your part” to slow the spread of infection.

Murphy also tweeted Sunday that the state secured 500 more ventilators after “multiple conversations” with the White House.

The Democratic governor said the machines are New Jersey’s biggest pressing need, and he vowed he would not “stop fighting to get us the equipment we need to save every life.”

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