After a Bergen County Superior Court judge upheld the indefinite suspension of New Jersey’s Blue Laws, Senator Bob Gordon and Assembly members Connie Wagner and Tim Eustace (all D-Bergen/Passaic) on Friday called on Governor Christie to put a finite end to the Blue Laws suspension in order to preserve the quality of life in Bergen County and avoid any additional legal entanglements that might distract local officials from dealing with more pressing storm-related matters.
“While we need to get New Jersey rebuilt and our economy moving again, we can’t allow this suspension of the Blue Laws to become an open back-door for their subversion and repeal,” said Gordon. “Our towns desperately want to return to normal, and that includes seeing the Blue Laws properly maintained.”
“In the interest of so many residents, the Governor should rescind his executive order suspending our Blue Laws after this weekend in order to help restore a sense of peace and normalcy to our towns that have been battered by Sandy,” said Wagner. “Allowing the Blue Laws to be suspended in perpetuity goes against the will of our communities and distracts local officials with legal entanglements that we would be much better off avoiding at this point so we can concentrate on more pressing matters.”
“Traffic snarls are the last thing our towns need as we attempt to regroup and rebuild,” said Eustace. “As we approach the two-week mark post-Sandy, all of the more immediate threats appear to be behind us. Stores can remain open six days a week to meet residents’ needs. It would behoove the Governor to rescind his executive order after this weekend or, at the very least, allow towns to determine what’s best for their own recovery at this point.”
Echoing the legislators’ sentiments were both Rochelle Park Mayor Jay Kovalcik and River Edge Mayor Sandy Moscaritolo.
“On behalf of all of the residents of Rochelle Park and Bergen County, I am a firm believer in the importance of maintaining Bergen County’s Blue Laws,” said Kovalcik. “It is a huge quality of life issue for every resident in Bergen County. Extending the ‘suspension’ of the Sunday Blue Laws more than a short period will have a very detrimental and negative impact to all who live in this county. I feel that the Governor’s suspension of the Blue Law should have a firm deadline or end date that does not extend past this coming weekend.”
“An open-ended suspension of the Blue Laws is nothing more than elimination of the Blue Laws, just under a different name,” said Moscaritolo. “While I recognize the need to ensure residents impacted by Sandy have access to necessities, we can’t let this extraordinary circumstance allow people not affected by the storm to just go shopping. A firm end-date for this suspension is needed, not just to protect those families who are trying to put their lives back together from hordes of day-tripping shoppers, but all Bergen residents who just want to see their quality of life restored.”