Legislation is Part of a $100 Million Relief Package for New Jersey Small Businesses

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ  – Gov.Phil Murphy today signed into law A-5444, which provides $35 million in federal COVID-19 relief aid for restaurants throughout New Jersey. The bill provides aid to a particularly hard hit sector of New Jersey’s economy and is part of a five-bill, $100 million relief effort aimed at helping small businesses recover from the year-long pandemic.

“For the past year, our restaurants have fought the good fight, and we know that fight has not been easy,” Murphy said. “This legislation will provide a much-needed lifeline to small business owners, who, through no fault of their own, have been devastated by this pandemic.”

"Our restaurants aren’t just a part of our economy. Our entire food scene reflects our diversity and core values," the governor added. "Together, we must fight to protect and strengthen it.'

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been an unprecedented health and economic tragedy for everyone, but it is hard to think of a sector that has been hit harder than restaurants. Restaurant owners and their employees have faced previously unimaginable challenges with a tenacity and grit that has been inspiring for everyone, but they cannot overcome COVID-19 alone,” said New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) Chief Executive Tim Sullivan. 

“There is now a light at the end of the tunnel, but we still have a long way to go to get there. The $35 million in new grant funding Governor Murphy has signed into law today will provide vital support these businesses need to bridge the gap and continue reopening safely," he said.

The relief aid will be administered by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. To date, the NJEDA has distributed more than $250 million in aid to some 55,000 businesses across the state.