Reopen New Jersey: Car, motorcycle dealers and bike shops begin in-person sales

TRENTON, New Jersey (WPVI) -- New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed an executive order allowing in-person sales at car, motorcycle and boat dealerships, along with bicycle shops.

The order goes into effect Wednesday at 6 a.m. with a few restrictions.

"We know this is an important step for our dealerships and bike shops, and New Jerseyans who need access to transportation," said Governor Murphy. "We will continue to responsibly and deliberately give different sectors a green light to open in a manner that is consistent with public health."

Customers and employees are required to continue social distancing while wearing face coverings.

Test drives will be allowed again, but the customer must do it alone to follow social distancing guidelines and everything must also be done through appointments.

"There was a lot of financial pain. To put it mildly, we were not making money by any means. We obviously incurred many losses due to this. Not with employees, luckily," said Ron Kutler of Cherry Hill Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep-Ram.

When it comes to bicycle shops, employees have been bringing bikes curb-side to customers and are now excited to welcome customers back inside.

Elias Rivera, the owner of Bernie's Bicycle and Fitness Center in Hamilton Township, Mercer County, said sales have been great, but they're currently facing a major supply shortage from overseas due to the high demand.

"Definitely a supply issue. I ordered a tremendous amount of bikes. I'm trying to fulfill everybody as fast as possible. Bikes are still in boxes and we're trying to build as fast as we can," said Rivera.

"Car dealerships and bike shops play an important role in the transportation sector," said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. "This is another step towards progress as we work together to protect the public health of all New Jerseyans."

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