Gyms closing across NJ. Bellmawr gym owner reacts to being blamed (Opinion)
It looks like Gov. Phil Murphy is opening up everything in New Jersey but the gyms. It's taking its toll on the gym owners, as Tilton Fitness powered by Hackensack Meridian Health will be permanently closing its doors on July 1.
There are those in the business who think the reason is Murphy is upset at the Atilis Gym owners who defied his executive order on May 18 and opened. To address this, Bellmawr Atilis Gym owner Ian Smith came on my show Wednesday night and said:
"First of all, if you think that's the way the government works, you should maybe take a political science class or two. If that is the way the government works, then I think we have some major issues in government. That's not how things are supposed to work."
Smith went on to say: "We were last on the list anyway and we weren't comfortable waiting until late June. We're okay to take the blame on that if that's the case. We have more support than people that are saying we're at fault so everybody's entitled to their opinion."
What does Smith think of the latest rules on gym owners allowing then to only open for personal training by appointment?
"This is getting sillier by the day. The favorite thing the governor likes to say is science and data, but there's no science and data being presented, just these arbitrary openings that really don't make sense and it just kind of seems like a game at this point"
While some Hoboken gyms opened with outdoor classes, Attilas has moved some of its equipment outside as well.
"My partner Frank came up with the great idea that we were going to move as much of the gym outside every single day as possible. So we have about 15,000 pounds of weights, and about 12 machines, squat rack, bench press, all sorts of stuff outside every single day for 9 days in a row."
Has he had any trouble with that?
"No, not at all."
The trouble is putting these hard-working New Jersey business owners in these situations.
I agree with Smith. This is getting sillier by the day. It's time to just set down the rules and let the Jersey gyms reopen.
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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