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(732) 222-8221
Address
315 E. Main Street
Oceanport, NJ 07757

Office of the Mayor - COVID-19 Update No. 2

MARCH 15, 2020                 COVID-19 UPDATE NO. 2            

All:

Given the fact that the news media and social media provide us with non-stop, up to the minute accounts of what is transpiring around the world, we are going to try to use these updates to serve as (a) a summary of the latest COVID-19 developments as they relate to municipal services and (b) a source document from which the latest information being provided to our municipality by Federal, State and County agencies can be summarized and/or accessed.

 BOROUGH OF OCEANPORT UPDATE INFORMATION

As previously stated, the Borough is in a unique situation being a provider of social and other public services, and therefore must act with an abundance of caution. To that end, in coordination with the Borough Administrator and the Finance and Administration Committee, I am directing that the following actions be taken so as to not unreasonably expose our residents and municipal workforce to the risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic:

  1. Effective Monday, March 16, 2020 all municipal buildings and independent emergency service buildings shall be closed to the public until further notice.

 

  1. This specifically includes:
  • Oceanport Borough Hall*
  • Oceanport Police Department (except emergency and public safety operations)
  • Port Au Peck Fire House (except emergency and public safety operations)
  • Oceanport Hook & Ladder (except emergency and public safety operations)
  • Oceanport First Aid Building (except emergency & public safety operations)
  • Community Center Library
  • Blackberry Bay Pavilion
  • Oceanport Department of Public Works

 *Oceanport Borough Hall (at 315 East Main Street) will have drop boxes and contact instruction forms located in the front hallway of the building for use by the general public to facilitate document filings, payments, and all other transactions necessary for the Borough and the public to keep the daily business of government moving forward. 

 

  1. All municipal employees will continue to report to work as regularly scheduled. Departments should await further guidance before enacting any scheduling changes. Health-related guidance on necessary and appropriate hygienic practices will be provided and/or reinforced with each department.

 

  1. Visits to the police department by the general public should be limited to emergent and substantial matters. Minor complaints, reports or paperwork requests can be handled over the phone.

 

  1. All municipal public events, recreational activities and programs are cancelled until further notice.

This will specifically include:

  • All public activities or previously reserved private events taking place at the Port Au Peck Fire House, Oceanport Hook & Ladder, Oceanport First Aid Building, Community Center Library and/or Blackberry Bay Pavilion; and,
  • Public activities hosted by the Oceanport Recreation Committee.

 

  1. Parks and recreation areas (e.g., Gatta Park, Blackberry Bay, Community Center Park, Trinity Park, Evergreen Park) will remain open for use by the public until further notice.

 

  1. Committees of the Borough of Oceanport are permitted to hold their meetings in the Borough’s public buildings until further notice. Members of the general public, however, will not be permitted to attend those meetings.

 

  1. As for our upcoming Municipal Council meeting, currently scheduled for Thursday, March 19th at 7:00 pm in the Maple Place School Library, we intend to hold this meeting and public attendance will problematic. With the assistance and guidance of the Division of Local Government Services regarding compliance with the mandates of the Open Public Meeting Act, however, we will be live streaming and/or televising the meeting and also providing a mechanism by which public hearings in connection with ordinances and the statutorily required public comment section can be facilitated by allowing remote access by the general public. We hope to have the logistics of the remote public access finalized by Wednesday, March 18th.    

These actions and programming amendments are subject to change based upon the ongoing, fluid situation and updated health-related information as it is received by the Borough. Obviously, these changes to our operations are going to inconvenience everyone involved and we will need to work collegially to make the best of this bad situation.

 

 

  1. FEDERAL UPDATE INFORMATION
  • On March 13, 2020 the President signed an emergency declaration in connection with the COVID-19 virus.
  • Based upon all available information, it would be prudent that all those who have drug prescriptions ensure that they have a 90 day supply on hand or on order.

  

  1. STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH UPDATE INFORMATION
  • If you believe you are sick with the novel Coronavirus, please call the 24-hour hotline currently operated by the State of New Jersey at 1-800-222-1222.

 

  1. MONMOUTH COUNTY UPDATE INFORMATION

 

  • Beginning Saturday, March 14, and through Sunday, March 22, all Monmouth County Library branches and the Monmouth County Park System buildings will be closed to the public. County golf courses and park spaces will remain open.

 

  • Beginning Monday, March 16, public access will be restricted from all Monmouth County owned or operated buildings with the exception of the Monmouth County Division of Social Services (MCDSS). For MCDSS, protections will be put into place to ensure that there is no physical contact between Monmouth County employees and the residents seeking services.

 

  • Freeholder Deputy Director Susan M. Kiley, liaison to the Monmouth County Department of Health and Human Services, has advised that the Monmouth County Health Department’s phone bank (732-845-2070) will open Monday, March 16th at 9 a.m. for residents who have any questions and concerns about COVID-19, or need to talk to someone about how this situation is affecting them. Crisis Counselors from the Monmouth County Division of Behavioral Health are available through the phone banks to help residents who may be experiencing stress or anxiety due to the evolving situation.

 

Folks, we are facing a great number of unknowns on many, many different levels and the next few weeks will test the mettle of our small community and the country at large.  Your municipal employees are committed to working with the general public to keep municipal operations running as smoothly as possible.

We will continue our regular, daily practice of communication and conference calls with all levels of government to ensure that the Borough of Oceanport receives and acts upon the best and most updated information about COVID-19 and the associated risk factors. Right now, the best we can offer is that you should be washing your hands, limiting personal contact and keeping yourself aware of the latest COVID-19 related developments by accessing the CDC’s and the State Department of Health’s websites.  Again, if you believe you are sick with the novel Coronavirus, please call the 24-hour hotline currently operated by the State of New Jersey at 1-800-222-1222.

 

Jay Coffey

Mayor of Oceanport

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