June 10, 2020 - Earlier today, Governor Murphy released Executive Order No. 153, effective immediately, which removes all golf related restrictions imposed since the beginning of the COVID-19 State of Emergency. Rules and procedures around tee time intervals, payment processes, caddies, and on-course amenities are now at the discretion of golf course management. All social distancing and sanitation guidelines still remain in effect.
Courses are highly encouraged to operate with an extreme level of detail to protect the safety and health of their patrons. Golfers are reminded to remain vigilant and maintain appropriate social distancing.
In addition to the elimination of a mandated starting time interval, golf carts may now operate with two riders, however, an option must be provided for a single rider cart if requested. Caddies can also return without restriction, but they should wear personal protective equipment including a mask and gloves.
Individual golf facilities have full discretion in terms of usage of on-course equipment such as flagsticks, bunker rakes, benches, ball washers, and devices which minimize touching of the cup or allow for the removal of a ball from the hole. If any equipment is used, every precaution should be taken to ensure proper sanitization. It remains up to each facility whether to use such equipment.
Below is the provision of the Executive Order No. 153 that eliminates the restrictions on golf. Any provision of a previous Executive Order that is not specifically superseded remains in effect. Also, non-golf related areas of clubs and courses, like indoor dining (EO-152) or pro shops (EO-150) are covered under other Executive Orders that are not changed by No. 153.
Executive Order No. 153, Paragraph 14:
14. The provisions in paragraph 9 of Executive Order No. 107 (2020), paragraphs 8 and 9 of Executive Order No. 133 (2020), paragraphs 2-3 of Executive Order No. 143 (2020), paragraph 1 of Executive Order No. 146 (2020), paragraphs 2, 5, 6, 8, and 10 of Executive Order No. 147 (2020), and paragraphs 2 and 4 of Executive Order No. 148 (2020) are hereby superseded to the extent inconsistent with this Order. To the extent provisions of these Orders are not inconsistent with this Order, they remain in full force and effect.
Golf Related Executive Orders rescinded by this provision include:
- Executive Order 107: Paragraph 9 (which closed all recreational businesses including golf courses.)
- Executive Order 133: Paragraph 8 (which created a full list of restrictions on golf courses.)
- Executive Order 147: Paragraph 6 (which allowed four players per tee time, fore caddies, club rentals, restrooms.)
Although the golf related restrictions have been lifted, we must continue to do our part and remain vigilant about social distancing and sanitization. Please continue to follow the guidelines of the CDC and local health departments and continue to make golf the safest place to recreate!