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New Jersey Business & Industry Association President and CEO Michele Siekerka issued the following statement regarding the announcement of Executive Order 192 by Gov. Phil Murphy today mandating workplace safety protections on New Jersey businesses.

“While we have always shared the Governor’s priority to establish workplaces that follow federal safety guidelines, today’s directive again makes New Jersey an outlier in terms of mandates – without any balance whatsoever for the concerns of employers.

“Our policymakers must strike a better balance toward trying to help our employers by prioritizing legislation for liability protections supporting those businesses that are doing the right thing already – in addition to bringing them more sorely needed resources.

“Sadly, we heard no such balance from the Governor today. We only heard about applying more financial burdens on the same job creators who simultaneously have many of the greatest capacity restrictions in the nation.

“Further, most businesses already have protective safeguards in place and are critically concerned about safeguarding their workforce and their workplaces. Mechanisms already exist to call out bad actors and hold them accountable. There is no need to now mandate additional costs on the good actors through unnecessary policy.

“We once again urge the Governor and our policymakers to put a pause on any further mandates, recognizing that New Jersey’s business climate was already consistently ranked amongst the worst in the nation pre-COVID because of the excessive cost of doing business. Further mandates only exacerbate that.”