You would think that New York opening its gyms would be good news for New Jersey gym owners, but noooooo.

The day after New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced all New York gyms can reopen starting Aug. 24, New Jersey was not only keeping theirs closed, but fining the owners of Atilis Gym in Bellmwar, who have repeatedly been defying New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy's executive orders since May 19. The gym owners have opened Atilis several times, even in defiance of court orders and local health department orders. Last week, Bellmawr took away their business license.

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New Jersey Superior Court Judge Judge Robert Lougy has come down with a ruling against owners Ian Smith and Frank Trumbetti. They have been fined $46,348 for remaining open on Aug. 1, 2 and 3, and $77,488.80 for remaining open on Aug, 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14. They will be hit with a $15,497 fine per day starting Aug. 10 for every day that they stay open.

In addition to all that, they have to pay $10,300 for attorney fees and services along with the ruling that a new barricade will be made to keep people out of the gym as soon as possible, which they might also have to foot the bill for.

Ian Smith, came on my New Jersey 101.5 show Tuesday night and talked all about what's going on:

"It's just Murphy showing that he will go to no end to enforce his will, even though he still, to date, has had no evidence to support that Atilis Gym Bellmawr or any other gym or any other small business that he still has shut down, is of any danger to the public."

A spokesperson for Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal told New Jersey 101.5: “Today’s decision recognizes that gym owners – like everyone else – must do their part and follow the law. As we’ve said before, we’re in the middle of a global pandemic, yet these defendants have defied multiple court orders designed to protect the public. We hope that today’s order puts an end to this dispute.”

Smith responded to that by saying:

"Stop blaming me for the mistakes that your public health agency and Gov. Murphy made in the nursing homes. Because if it wasn't for that, our numbers wouldn't be where they're at and he wouldn't have the argument he has, and he still doesn't have a good argument."

The gym's license was revoked last week, and Smith said he thought it was personal. How far are these gym owners willing to go?

"We're gonna take this all the way to the Supreme Court and whatever comes along with that. If he wants to lock us up and he wants to continue to throw these fines at us, I mean he's openly admitted that these fines are so high because he's look to cripple our ability to defend ourselves."

The saga continues ...

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise. Any opinions expressed are Steve's own. Steve Trevelise is on New Jersey 101.5 Monday-Thursday from 7pm-11pm. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.

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