California Gov. Gavin Newsom, earlier this week, implemented new COVID-19 restrictions that impact dealerships, in an effort to limit the spread of the virus. As coronavirus cases continue to rise across the country, dealerships in other states (including New Jersey) could potentially face similar restrictions.
Gov. Newsom moved 28 California counties into the most restrictive tier (now a total of 41 counties). Businesses operating in those counties, including dealerships, are limited to 25 percent indoor capacity. Businesses in less restrictive tiers are subject to a 50 percent capacity limit. There has also been discussion about imposing a curfew, which would further impact business operations, but no such curfew has been officially imposed.
In the early days and weeks of the pandemic, dealerships in many states were forced to cut back operations or were forcibly shutdown. Here in New Jersey, dealership service was deemed essential and allowed to continue operations, while sales were limited to online activity. By mid–May, NJ CAR successfully lobbied to have in-person sales permitted, as long as dealerships followed established sanitization, health and safety guidelines.
NJ CAR encourages its members to be proactive and ensure they are operating safely, with the health of their customers and employees as their main priority. Our best defense against further restrictions, or another potential showroom shutdown, is to demonstrate the industry’s commitment to operating safely.
If you haven’t already done so, we encourage you to have your dealership become NJ CAR Clean certified. To learn more about this free program, contact Breanna Esquilin at firstname.lastname@example.org or Charles Russo at email@example.com.