12-30: First Rocky Hill Death & 9 New Cases; Avoid New Year’s Parties; Local Businesses & COVID; Winter Bingo Challenge; COVID Case Report

Posted on December 31, 2020


There have been nine (9) new cases in Montgomery and Rocky Hill since our last report on Monday, 12-28-20, and Rocky Hill had its first death due to COVID-19. Detailed case report at the end of this ebulletin.


Health Officer Stephanie D. Carey received her COVID vaccine this week.

Montgomery Health Officer Stephanie D. Carey says she is concerned about the potential for a “surge on top of a surge” due to Christmas and New Year’s holiday gatherings. Consequently, she advises against celebrations on New Year’s Eve with anyone other than household members.

“I understand we all want to celebrate the end of 2020, but the pandemic is not yet behind us. I urge you to celebrate either privately or virtually,” Ms. Carey said.

As a local public health official, Ms. Carey became one of the first to be vaccinated in New Jersey, receiving her shot on Monday. “We all need to continue masking and social distancing, even after we vaccinate, because it takes up to six weeks, and two doses, to become 95% immune.    While vaccines provide reason for hope, we still are many months away from reaching herd immunity,” she said.


The Montgomery Department of Health has provided local businesses with guidelines and A RESOURCE PACKET (found under Business Guidance button of Covid-19 Page) for handling employee COVID cases.  They are expected to: 1) Notify the Montgomery Department of Health and all employees; 2) Help the Health Department identify close contacts of infected persons; and 3) ensure that infected employees do not return to work too soon.

Depending on the situation, businesses may be asked to close for a day or more during the investigation, and to enable deep cleaning of the premises.

Currently, one retail store in town is closed for cleaning due to a suspected employee case. There appears to be no transmission to coworkers or customers.  While an earlier outbreak at Carrier Clinic has been resolved, several new clusters have emerged among patients and staff, reflecting community transmission statewide.  No Montgomery resident cases have been linked to Carrier.


The Montgomery Municipal Alliance is encouraging families to stay safe while being active by releasing a Monty Winter Bingo Challenge.” The game includes 24 activities that residents can choose from to fill in a bingo card. Examples include visiting the Sourland Mountains for a hike, exploring the township’s arboretum, visiting the Princeton University Art museum’s virtual exhibits, or driving by the sixteen Montgomery homes participating in the holiday lights decoration contest.


The Princeton Elks Club, Montgomery EMS, and the Montgomery Food Pantry have partnered for a New Year’s Eve drive for toiletries and cleaning products for families in need.  From 9 AM to 3 PM on Thursday, donations will be collected at ShopRite for items such as mouthwash, razors, aluminum foil, toilet paper, and sponges. You’ll be able to pick up a shopping list before entering the store, and then drop off donated items on your way out.


As you celebrate the New Year, why not think back thousands of years to the Native American history of Montgomery? Last month, a virtual program hosted by Mayor Sadaf Jaffer featured a fascinating online discussion with Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Leader, Dr. John Norwood and Indigenous Rights Activist, Arla Patch.  The program was a project of One Montgomery and Montgomery4Heritage, a Princeton University Tiger Challenge Team.  Watch Video.


There have been nine (9) new COVID-19 cases in Montgomery and Rocky Hill since our last report, Monday, 12-28-20. Rocky Hill had its first death. The age breaks below include a correction from Monday’s report.

As of 9AM today, December 30

Montgomery cases: 595

Montgomery deaths: 8

Rocky Hill cases:  18

Rocky Hill deaths: 1


Age Ranges of Cases in Montgomery & Rocky Hill:

132      <20

93     20-29

58      30-39

95      40-49

95      50-59

66      60-69

21      70-79

53      80+

604 confirmed and probable cases for Montgomery and Rocky Hill in total, of which:

–  536 presumed recovered a

–  60 currently ill

– 8 fatalities

a “Presumed recovered” means cases that have met the criteria for discontinuation of isolation. A minimum of 10 days from diagnosis, or three days after symptoms resolve, whichever is longer. This definition represents a change from earlier in the pandemic before the CDC provided a definition.

For further statistics, go to the Health Dept.’s COVID-19 portal: https://health.montgomery.nj.us/covid19/,  State of NJ DOH’s COVID-19 Case Chart , and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

Testing Site info found at: https://health.montgomery.nj.us/covid-testing/