NJ Gov. Phil Murphy and First Lady Tammy Murphy receive COVID-19 vaccines in Atlantic City

ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey (WPVI) -- More than five million vaccine doses have been administered in New Jersey and, on Friday, Gov. Phil Murphy and First Lady Tammy Murphy received their shots at the Atlantic City Convention Center megasite.

"Not just because there was availability, but we wanted to make a statement that this is one of the most important communities in our state," said Murphy.

They made their appointments earlier this week after becoming eligible on Monday.

During Wednesday's COVID-19 briefing, Murphy said while supplies of Johnson and Johnson vaccines were up in New Jersey this week, that will likely not be the case over the next several weeks.



While eligibility opens to everyone 16 and older in New Jersey on April 19, Murphy says not everyone will be able to get their shot right away. He is asking for patience.

Relieved casino employees received their first doses Friday in Atlantic City, where the megasite had plenty of open appointments this week.

"Now I will feel more comfortable when doing my job," said Tania Morillo, an employee at Caesars Atlantic City.

New Jersey's hospitality industry got a boost Friday, too.

Gov. Murphy signed legislation providing $35 million in federal aid to restaurants.

"This is $35 million dollars of coronavirus relief funds directed at restaurants, bars, restaurants, breweries with 50 or fewer employees," said Murphy.

Officials say there will be an application process, and will be administered by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority.

"Dining establishments who have managed to endure through the brutal challenges by adapting, reimagining and reinventing themselves continue to navigate an unstable and uncertain future," said Dana Lancellotti, President and CEO of the New Jersey Restaurant and Hospitality Association.

According to the N.J. Restaurant and Hospitality Association, one-third of New Jersey's foodservice establishments have closed since the start of the pandemic.

Murphy said there could be more federal assistance coming soon from the American Rescue Plan.
Copyright © 2021 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.