TRENTON, N.J. – With an eye on improving travel and economic trends, Assemblyman Ron Dancer recently introduced a resolution urging the Department of Health to set up mobile Covid-19 testing and vaccination units along the Jersey Shore during tourism season.
“Jersey shore businesses and attractions are very much looking forward to welcoming back tourists this summer, and studies show we have reason to be optimistic,” said Dancer (R-Ocean). “The state could help protect the health and safety of tourism and hospitality professionals, year-round coastal residents, and tourists considering vacations at the shore, by setting up mobile coronavirus testing and vaccination units along the boardwalk or other prominent locations. This would support an economic recovery down the shore while responsibly addressing coronavirus concerns.”
The state hopes to have 70 percent of the adult population vaccinated for Covid-19 by June – just in time for the start of the summer tourism season. According to one study, confidence in the vaccine is contributing to an increase in summer travel plans among Americans. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently updated its travel guidance to say that fully vaccinated people can travel safely within the country without getting tested or self-quarantining.
“More than half of the tourism spending in the state in 2019 can be attributed to the Jersey Shore. Clearly, if we want to return to a booming tourism industry, we should be boosting our efforts at the Jersey Shore,” said Dancer. “This summer already looks promising and the state should plan now on increasing access to testing and vaccinations in this region.”
Pre-pandemic, tourism was New Jersey’s sixth largest industry. According to the New Jersey Tourism Industry Association, the impact of the coronavirus and related policies has been greater on the tourism industry than any other sector.
Dancer’s resolution (AR231) has been referred to the Assembly Health Committee.