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libraries curbside pickup
COURTESY STATE OF NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil Murphy speaks during a Friday, June 12 press briefing in Trenton.

By ERIN ROLL
roll@montclairlocal.news

Libraries will be able to offer curbside pickup service starting on Monday, June 15, and in July, schools will be able to offer in-person summer educational programs.

The Department of Health has specified what personal care businesses, including salons and barber shops, will be able to reopen starting on June 22.

Gov. Phil Murphy made those announcements during a Friday press briefing, as the state prepares to enter the second phase of its reopening on Monday. That day, June 15, child care centers will be able to reopen, restaurants can offer outdoor dining, and non-essential retail can begin offering in-store service with limited capacity.

The library curbside pickup will be authorized by an administrative order from Pat Callahan, superintendent of the New Jersey State Police.

Following the governor’s announcement today, Montclair Public Library Director Peter Coyl said library officials have been discussing the possibility of curbside pickup for several weeks. Library officials are awaiting specific guidance from the state on what regulations will need to be followed, and training for staff on the safe handling of materials. Once that has been determined, the library will release information to the public about curbside pickup, Coyl said.

Schools will be allowed to offer in-person summer programs starting on July 6.

Department of Education officials will be sending guidance to school districts on how they can offer programs, and what safety measures should be in place. However, Murphy said it will be for the school districts to decide what best meets the needs of their students, including whether their programs should be in-person, virtual, or a hybrid program.

Murphy also acknowledged that many families with special needs children had been having difficulty during the distance learning period.

On June 22, personal care businesses — salons, barber shops, cosmetology shops, day and medical spas, electrology facilities, hair braiding studios, massage studios, nail salons, tanning salons and tattoo parlors — will reopen.

Client and beautician work stations must be at latest six feet apart. Both clients and service providers must wear masks at all times. However, for work in which the customer cannot wear a mask, the staff member must wear not only a mask but also a face shield.

New Jersey is one of only five states, in addition to New York, Connecticut, Illinois and Wisconsin, that are showing positive trends in COVID-19 rates. Across the country, health officials are reporting spikes in COVID-19 cases in states that reopened too quickly. “The foolhardiness of their actions is now being seen,” Murphy said.

Today’s numbers

Today, Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli reported one additional case of multisystem inflammatory syndrome, bringing the state total to 40 cases. The condition has been observed in children and teens who have either tested positive for COVID-19 or for its antibodies, and three children are in the hospital as of Friday. No deaths have been reported.

On Friday, June 12, health officials reported 495 new cases, down from 539 on Thursday, bringing the state total to 166,164.

Officials also reported 48 new deaths, down from 70 deaths on Thursday, bringing the state total to 12,489.

Thursday evening, 1,480 people were in the hospital, down from 1,512 on Wednesday. Of those, 415 people were in critical care and 300 ventilators were in use, compared to the 445 critical care patients and 342 ventilators on Wednesday. Hospitals discharged 135 patients and admitted 117 new patients, compared to 169 discharges and 27 new admissions.

On Friday morning, Essex County officials reported 32 new cases and seven new deaths, down from the 67 cases and 13 deaths reported on Thursday, bringing the county total to 18,268 cases and 1,733 deaths.

Montclair health officials reported 450 cases and 50 deaths as of Friday, the same numbers that had been reported on Wednesday and Thursday.