Monmouth freeholders provide updates on latest initiatives; COVID-19

On behalf of the Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County Freeholder Director Thomas A. Arnone and Deputy Director Susan M. Kiley held a the press conference on the morning of April 9 to provide updates on the COVID-19 situation and additional support the county will supply the business community.

“Since the start of the Take Out in Monmouth initiative last week, we have complied well over 750 businesses, which can be found at www.takeoutinmonmouth.com,” Arnone said.

“Today, we are adding breweries and wineries to this online list to further boost the local economy. These business owners are our friends, neighbors and community leaders and we owe our support to these individuals and their employees during this difficult time,” he said.

Together, Monmouth County municipalities, local chambers of commerce and the Monmouth County divisions of Economic Development and Tourism continue to research and identify all food grocers, breweries, wineries and restaurants that remain open, according to a press release.

While the county works to maintain an updated list, business operators may email TakeOutInMonmouth@visitmonmouth.com to be listed or to request a change in listing.

“As a result of mounting cases and more and more residents becoming increasingly frightened to leave their own home, the Monmouth County Aging Disability Resource Center has prepared the COVID-19 Resource Guide to assist seniors and residents with disabilities who may be struggling to acquire basic needs during this health pandemic,” Kiley said.

“The county has been extensively collaborating with local officials and the guide will be frequently updated to reflect the most current services and resources offered by municipality,” she said.

In addition to the Monmouth County Aging Disability Resource Center, Monmouth ACTS (Assisting Communities Through Services) has been directing residents to Monmouth Resource Net, an online directory of community and health resources and services, information about residential mortgage relief, as well as mental health support, according to the press release.

The freeholders also discussed the Executive Order signed on April 7 by Gov. Phil Murphy, closing all Monmouth County parks indefinitely.

“I would like to publicly state that I do not support the indefinite closure of all county parks in New Jersey,” Arnone said. “I also find it unacceptable that we have no input as to when the parks will reopen.

“There are a number of options that could have been considered as an alternative to completely closing county parks, including limiting hours, days, etc.

“The freeholders have felt, throughout this entire pandemic, that our county parks are essential for our residents’ mental health and a great choice for passive recreation. I promise we will open our parks immediately as soon as the Executive Order is lifted,” Arnone said.

At present, members of the public are restricted from visiting parks and golf courses. Park and golf course entrances and parking lots are gated or barricaded and visitors who gain park access by foot or bike will be directed to leave, as the parks will still be patrolled. Marina services are suspended, but owners will have access to their boats, according to the press release.

Monmouth County news updates and information regarding the COVID-19 situation are posted at www.visitmonmouth.com