New Jersey’s COVID-19 public health emergency ends Monday, the same day the state lifts the mask mandate for schools and child care centers. The end comes nearly two years after it was implemented to give the state flexibility in its pandemic response. But Gov. Phil Murphy said the larger state of emergency — also enacted March 9, 2020 — will stay, enabling the state to continue COVID-19 testing and vaccination programs and making it easier to accept federal funding for this work.

“And, like the state of emergency for (Superstorm) Sandy, which most of you probably did not know remained in effect, maintaining this one will not impact your daily life in one even small way,” Murphy said Friday during his 257th and what he said would be his final pandemic media briefing. “Like today’s briefing, this action (to end the public health emergency) marks the end of this phase in our war against the coronavirus, as we make the transition from pandemic to endemic.” To read the full story.