COVID-19 Update from Mayor Manzo – 4/09/2020

Mayor Lou Manzo provides regular updates on the COVID-19 crisis. This is the 4/9 update.

Dear Residents & Business Owners:

In the last 24 hours Gloucester County has lost another resident to the COVID-19 virus, bringing the total number of fatalities in the county to 7. As these numbers are updated to you, almost daily, it is easy to become numb to the “data”, when it isn’t impacting us directly. Let us stay mindful to the dramatic impact it is having on the families that are dealing with the passing of a loved one.

In the interest of clarity, going forward I will only report the number of positive tests and deaths. Statewide, there been 51,027 positive tests for the Coronavirus and 1,700 deaths. As of 1PM today, Gloucester County has had 417 positive tests and 7 deaths. Here in Harrison, there have been no fatalities and we now have 15 positive tests in total, with 2 coming in the last 24 hours. Emphasizing that everyone is at risk, these two new positive cases are females ages 29 and 31.

The Gloucester County Drive-Thru Testing Center went live yesterday and ran efficiently. Sixty-two tests were performed, and the plan is to have a designated test day once a week. The next date will be announced shortly.


Yesterday the Governor issued Executive Order 122. Here is a summary of the order:

1. Essential retail businesses that are still permitted to operate under Executive Order No. 107 (2020) must adopt the following policies:

  • Limit occupancy at 50 percent of the stated maximum store capacity at one time.
  • Establish hours of operation, wherever possible, that permit access solely to high-risk individuals, as defined by the CDC.
  • Install a physical barrier, such as a shield guard, between customers and cashiers/baggers wherever feasible or otherwise ensure six feet of distance between those individuals.
  • Provide employees break time for repeated hand washing throughout the workday.
  • Arrange for contactless pay options, pickup, and/or delivery of goods wherever feasible.
  •  Provide sanitization materials, such as hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes, to staff and customers.
  •  Define six feet of spacing in check-out lines for appropriate spacing for social distancing.
  • Require workers and customers to wear cloth face coverings, except where doing so would inhibit that individual’s health or where the individual is under two years of age.

2. The physical operations of all non-essential construction projects shall cease at 8:00PM on Friday, April 10. “Essential construction projects” include the following:

  • Projects necessary for the delivery of health care services.
  • Transportation projects, including roads, bridges, and mass transit facilities or infrastructure, etc.
  • Utility projects, including those necessary for energy and electricity production.
  • Residential projects that are exclusively designated as affordable housing. 
  • Projects involving pre-K-12 schools.
  • Projects already underway involving individual single-family homes, apartment units where an individual already resides and additions to single-family homes such as solar panels.
  • Maximum 5 construction worker on site at one time.
  • Provide employees break time for repeated hand washing throughout the workday.
  • Residential projects that are exclusively designated as affordable housing. 

3. Manufacturing businesses, warehousing businesses, and businesses engaged in essential construction projects must adopt policies that include:

  • Prohibit non-essential visitors from entering the worksite.
  • Limit worksite meetings and workgroups to groups of fewer than ten individuals.
  • Stagger work start/stop times and lunch breaks where practicable to limit the number of individuals entering and leaving the worksite concurrently.
  • Require workers and visitors to wear cloth face coverings, in accordance with CDC recommendations, while on the premises.
  • Require infection control practices, such as regular hand washing, coughing and sneezing etiquette, and proper tissue usage and disposal.

4. All essential retail businesses, warehousing businesses, manufacturing businesses, and businesses performing essential construction projects must also adopt policies that include, at minimum, the following requirements:

  • Immediately separate and send home workers who appear to have symptoms consistent with COVID-19.
  • Promptly notify workers of any known exposure COVID-19 at the worksite.
  • Clean and disinfect the worksite in accordance with CDC guidelines when a worker at the site has been diagnosed with COVID-19. 

The order will take effect on Friday, April 10, at 8:00PM.


As we work our way through the most difficult of days over the next two weeks, take the time to focus on something positive. We have intentionally turned your focus to ensuring that our healthcare workers are kept at the forefront of our thoughts as they fight this battle on our behalf. Please, please engage in the Heroes in the Hill program. Encourage your children to draw a picture and write a few words of “thanks” to our Healthcare Heroes. 


Also, as we continued to display our community spirit, take a minute to go to the Gloucester County Chamber of Commerce site and vote in the Best of Gloucester County. Be sure to vote for your favorite Mullica Hill business in every category and definitely vote for “Lights on Main” as the Best Event to keep our consecutive winning streak going. Voting ends April 22nd.


We all know that the healthcare system is burdened by the short supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Some local businesses/non-profits have stepped up to help. Based on personal relationships, this group was able to purchase 5,000 medical masks (non-N95) and they donated them to Inspira Medical Center in Mullica Hill. They carved out a couple hundred to give to a local OB-GYN practice in need of masks for their pregnant Mothers, with the rest happily received by Inspira.

The hometown benefactors are Kenny Patel of Dunkin Donuts, Adam Wingate of Wingate Tree Service and Harrison Township Youth Basketball (HTYB) in memory of Marty Derer, who passed away of complications from the COVID-19 virus Monday at the age of 56. Marty was a longtime Basketball Ref who was loved by everyone and he loved being out there with the kids playing the game that was his true passion. HTYB Vice-President and co-founder, Don Heim, was a good friend and sponsored the HTYB commitment. He referred to Marty as “the best…..he loved being a referee. He will be missed terribly.” Please be sure to share the post on our Facebook page.

To Kenny and Adam and Don/HTYB, we say “thank you” for bringing honor to the Mullica Hill community with this generous donation. You saw a need, sought a solution and acted unselfishly. You are all the definition of Harrison Strong! Your community applauds you.

Together for Harrison Township,
Lou Manzo
Your Mayor