Jersey City Mayor Enacts Liquor License Curfew to Curb Coronavirus

Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

Jersey City bars and restaurants are now taking attendance at the door in an effort to track COVID-19 spread

In an effort to minimize the impact of the new coronavirus, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop is asking that bars, restaurants, and other venues that hold more than 25 people to take attendance at the door, according to a press release from the mayor’s office. In a Twitter announcement on Thursday morning, Fulop added that all liquor licenses would have a 10 p.m. curfew, another measure to limit large gatherings at bars and nightclubs.

The new attendance measure is being framed as an “ask” rather than a demand, but attendees at a recent Jersey City Council meeting were required to sign in at the door with their names, addresses, and contact information, in case of future need to track exposure. The city plans to keep measures in place “until we see a decrease in confirmed NJ cases,” he tweeted.

“We are taking reasonable steps and giving clear direction to the community on expectations,” Fulop said in a press release Wednesday evening. “We are asking our resident to help us in keeping our community safe.” The new Jersey City guidelines came just hours after Mayor Bill de Blasio suggested that healthy New York City residents “should be going about your life” and continuing to eat out at restaurants.

Jersey City is of course smaller than New York, so such an ask is theoretically more manageable there. Still, the difference in tone reflects what’s happening across the country: Local municipalities are taking matters into their own hands with varying degrees of severity, as President Donald Trump and the federal government only deemed the virus a more serious issue on Wednesday night. New Jersey has 23 reported cases of coronavirus at the time of writing — one of which has resulted in a death — although none of them are residents of Jersey City.

In other news

— Ahead of its ninth birthday, the Bronx Brewery will be heading to the East Village with plans to open a second, two-story taproom and bar.

— Modern Indian restaurant Rahi will be offering a special Gulal cocktail ($14) through March 24 in honor of Holi, the colorful Hindu festival celebrating the arrival of spring, according to a restaurant spokesperson. The drink features gin, jack fruit puree, lemon, ginger liquor, green chile, and Aquafaba.

— The Korea Society is hosting a discussion between Mokbar’s Esther Choi and Judy Joo, the author of Korean Soul Food, on navigating the industry as women chefs, on Friday, March 20, at 6 p.m.

— Newly-opened wine and spirits store Enoteca LIC will be hosting a Spanish wine tasting this evening in Long Island City from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

— Just leaving this here:

This post has been updated to include further information from Jersey City’s mayor.

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