03-12-20 - COVID-19

Update 03-12-2020 on COVID-19
Posted on 03/12/2020

March 12, 2020

BOROUGH OF FORT LEE URGES CRITICAL PREPARATION REGARDING COVID-19

The COVID-19 virus continues to spread at a very high rate, triggering closures of school districts, youth sports, college sporting events without fans, and even the suspension of the NBA.  Information concerning the COVID-19 health crisis rapidly changes on a moment to moment basis requiring municipalities such as the Borough of Fort Lee to take frequent and timely measures to protect the health, safety and welfare of all residents. 

The World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic affecting vast amounts of people on a worldwide basis.  While the Borough of Fort Lee has not experienced any additional presumptive or confirmed COVID-19 cases, it is the unanimous view of Mayor Mark J. Sokolich, Superintendent of Schools Ken Rota, Health Officer Jill Scarpa, OEM Director Bryan Drumgoole, as well as every member of the COVID-19 Taskforce, that the Borough of Fort Lee will experience additional closures. This will include all recreational facilities, including our Community Center, all youth sports activities, the Fort Lee Public Library (all operations), and perhaps even the Fort Lee Public School system.  These closures may be imminent and preparedness is critical to minimize disruption of your day to day lives and to preserve the safety of your neighbors. 

It is imperative that every resident of the Borough of Fort Lee continue to prepare for and make arrangements to address these closures and the impact on your day to day lives, such as making arrangements for child care and adult care.  It is imperative that all Fort Lee residents recognize that the closure of the Fort Lee Senior Citizen Center and all programming and events at the Fort Lee Public Library are only initial steps to address this public health crisis.  

Be further advised that our COVID-19 Taskforce meets every day at 8:30 AM to assess additional developments and the impact the COVID-19 virus has on our community.  Our COVID-19 Taskforce and all experts, including the New Jersey Commissioner of Health, have advised that if the COVID-19 virus continues on its current trajectory, closures of municipal facilities and public schools will be warranted and perhaps mandated.  It is the civic responsibility of each and every resident of the Borough of Fort Lee to follow the recommended guidelines to prevent contracting COVID-19 and spreading this virus to others.  Those guidelines include:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe
  • If you are experiencing symptoms, wear a face mask

It is also imperative that all residents remain vigilant and regularly check the following websites for current information, developments and the status of the COVID-19 public health crisis: 

www.nj.gov/health
www.cdc.gov
www.fortleenj.org

FORT LEE PUBLIC LIBRARY REMAINS OPEN BUT TEMPORARILY SUSPENDS PROGRAMS TO PREPARE FOR COVID-19

The Fort Lee Public Library will temporarily suspend all programs, events, outreach and room reservations until March 31, 2020, at which time we will reassess.  New room reservations will not be scheduled until further notice. This measure is in the interest of public safety and concern of the spread of COVID-19.  On a daily basis the Library conducts numerous programs, and events and welcomes upwards of 1,000 visitors of all ages. We recognize our responsibility to ensure the safety of our patrons and staff. 

As of now, the Library will maintain standard hours of operation.  All meeting rooms will remain closed to the public.  Visitors should follow guidelines of the Center for Disease Control and World Health Organization before visiting the Library. If you are sick, please do not visit the Library.  We have asked the same of our staff.  In addition, we recommend following the CDC standard of social distancing in public spaces and keeping at least six feet apart from one another.

The Fort Lee Public Library Board of Trustees continues to work closely with the Borough of Fort Lee and our community partners on preserving the health, safety and welfare of our patrons and staff.  Further preemptive measures will be considered and may include an extension of the above suspension, reduced hours and services, and closure of the Library.  Information will be provided as it becomes available at fortleelibrary.org.