Gov. Murphy signs bill extending pandemic outdoor dining standards to 2024
Gov. Phil Murphy has signed a bill extending outdoor dining standards set forth in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Restaurants, bars, breweries and distilleries were given permission by the state to use tents, canopies and tables outside during the beginning of the pandemic -- superseding local ordinance.
That law will be extended to Nov. 30, 2024, with the bill signing after it was set to expire this November. It will allow the businesses to continue to use the tents, canopies and tables outside of their business establishment from the first day of April to the first day of December.
"Believe it or not, we still have some customers who are uncomfortable with dining inside. So, they will come here, and they know they can eat outside,” says Andrew Murray, manager of Suprema.
Still, some business owners say outside dining cuts down on valuable parking spots. They say sometimes the customers choose to just move on ultimately hurting their business - and that privilege for some is a detriment to others.