Announcements and Service Modifications

Union County COVID-19 Test Center Open to All Union County Residents Beginning Monday, May 18th, regardless of symptoms or not

Beginning on Monday, May 18th, the Union County Freeholders are announcing the Union County Covid-19 Drive-Through Test Center at Kean University will be available to all Union County residents who wish to be tested, whether or not they are experiencing symptoms.

The Test Center, which offers free testing, is also available to all first responders and frontline health workers who are asymptomatic and that work in Union County, regardless of their residence.  The testing site will remain committed to testing all first responders and frontline health workers as long as they live or work in New Jersey.

“This expansion of the Test Center will mirror the states goal to increase testing capacity within our communities, building data that will capture virus rates to be used to help get our economy restarted responsibly in our County,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella.

Asymptomatic Union County residents, first responders and frontline health workers who work in Union County who wish to be tested can make an appointment online:

The hotline will still be available to residents without internet, first responders and front-line health workers who are experiencing symptoms of the virus.  Please call  908-214-7107 or 908-373-5105 to be triaged and scheduled for a test.

Union County Parks Reopened on Limited Basis with Social Distancing

View Press Release

Update – Archery Range reopening with adjustments 

Union County parks are now partially re-opened for limited and passive activities only, in accordance with statewide restrictions issued by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. The County’s two golf courses will open next week, after routine maintenance is conducted.

“Union County parks will re-open under guidelines that are consistent with the statewide plan, which provides for residents to benefit from healthy outdoor activities while diligently observing precautions against spreading or contracting COVID-19,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella.

“As a reminder, the virus does not disappear outside,” Mirabella added. “Please be safe, and help save lives by observing the six-foot social distance guideline and other rules for visiting County parks during this time.”

Union County parks are open on the following basis:

  • All group activities, including picnics and other gatherings remain prohibited.
  • Only individual activities are permitted, such as walking, jogging, bicycling, and fishing. For these activities, individuals may be accompanied by family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners.
  • Park visitors must stay on marked paths and observe signage for social distancing.
  • Park visitors are encouraged to wear masks.

The following facilities remain closed until further notice:

  • Restrooms
  • Picnic areas
  • Athletic fields
  • Playgrounds and exercise stations
  • Trailside Nature & Science Center
  • Warinanco Sports Center
  • Watchung Stable
  • Echo Lake and Warinanco dog parks

Visitors are advised to avoid congested areas. When using pathways and trails give way to others, in order to maintain a six-foot social distance.

Visitors are also advised to observe other COVID-19 preventive measures including: wash hands frequently, do not touch face, cover coughs and sneezes with tissue or elbow, do not go out if sick, stay away from sick people, and use a face mask for additional protection.

Park visitors please note: Stay on marked trails in order to preserve fragile native habitat in County parks. The taking of plants and other wildlife is prohibited. Share paved paths by keeping to the right unless passing others. Bicycles are permitted only on paved paths. Dogs must be kept on leash. All trash must be carried out where receptacles are full or unavailable. 

Due to the COVID-19 statewide public health emergency, the County of Union is open for essential business only.

Anyone wishing to visit on non-essential matters will not be allowed access to public buildings, and we encourage our residents to use our website for any non-emergent, non-essential service they may require. Visitors for essential Social Services such as Food Stamps (SNAP), and emergency assistance will be allowed entry to the Division of Social Services Building at 342 Westminster Avenue in Elizabeth. For other essential services such as the County Clerk,  we encourage you to call ahead to make an appointment or see if you can conduct your business online first.

Union County COVID-19 Test Center Expands to First Responders and Certain Health Care Workers in New Jersey

Expanded telemedicine procedure introduced in response to statewide need.

In order to help key emergency personnel get a COVID-19 test as quickly as possible, the Union County COVID-19 Test Center at Kean University is now available to first responders and certain health care workers in New Jersey, regardless of their place of work or residence.

Those covered by the new procedures are: fire fighters, police officers, EMTs, 911 tele-communicators, Medical Reserve Corps members, all hospital employees, staff at long term care facilities and nursing homes, and home health aides.

The expanded service is in response to limited availability of testing statewide.

“Union County is taking this extraordinary statewide measure to support emergency personnel in New Jersey, so those who need a test can get one without any further delay,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella.

Beginning today, first responders and certain health care workers in New Jersey seeking a COVID-19 test, regardless of residence, can follow these steps:

  1. Click here to make an appointment online.
  2. Button to open the system is also on the County’s home page.
  3. Or call the Union County Test Center at 908-373-5105 or 908-214-7107 (no walk-ins are admitted).
  4. Discuss symptoms by phone with a triage nurse. The nurse will schedule an appointment at the Test Center for patients who meet guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control.
  5. Persons with an appointment can proceed to the Testing Center at their scheduled time (no doctor visit or prescription is required).

In addition to first responders and certain health workers, all Union County residents with COVID-19 symptoms can call the Test Center at 908-373-5105 or 908-214-7107. and follow the same telemedicine process.

“The Test Center serves every patient who meets the CDC guidelines, even if they have no health insurance or personal doctor. COVID-19 knows no barriers, and our response to the crisis must be barrier-free as well,” Mirabella emphasized.

“The Test Center has also become a vital emergency response asset on a broader level,” he added. “By performing scores of triage interviews daily, it enables doctors in our community to focus more attention on treating patients.”

The Test Center is located at the Kean University Campus on Morris Avenue in Union Township. It is open Mondays through Fridays from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The Test Center is available on a drive-through basis only. Testing is free.

Service Adjustments to County Services and Offices

Board of Chosen Freeholders Meetings

Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders Teleconference Meetings

In light of the public health emergency caused by Coronavirus, and the subsequent issuance of the Governor’s Executive Order 107, The Board of Chosen Freeholders of the County of Union (the Board), has been conducting meetings remotely and by electronic means without providing a physical meeting place as of the Special Meeting of March 18, 2020. The Board of Chosen Freeholders of the County of Union has commenced, and will continue until further notice, their Agenda Setting Session at 5:00pm, followed by the Regular Meeting to commence as soon as possible after the Agenda Setting Session, as of April 2, 2020.

In accordance with N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 (the “Open Public Meetings Act”) and in adherence to the Department of Community Affairs, Division of Local Government Services (DLGS) guidelines, the Agenda Setting Session and the Regular Meeting will be open to the public by electronic means, and as such, will conduct their meetings through a teleconference via ZOOM Webinar. All members of the public may view the meeting by livestream at ucnj.org/freeholders.  Any member of the public wishing to participate in the teleconference meeting, may do so by downloading ZOOM to their individual electronic device and select the following link: https://ucnj.org/zoom-meeting/. Anyone wishing to participate must email the Clerk of the Board at jpellettiere@ucnj.org to receive the meeting-specific password to gain access to the teleconference. All requests must be submitted and received by the Clerk of the Board no later than noon of the corresponding meeting date. 

Members of the public who prefer not to, or do not have the means to, participate in the teleconference, may continue to participate in Freeholder Meetings by emailing comments relative to resolutions being offered for adoption and/or on any governmental issue that a member of the public feels may be of concern to the residents of the county to the Clerk of the Board at jpellettiere@ucnj.org. All relevant comments received will be read into the record during each Regular Meeting’s Public Comment Portion, prior to the Board’s consideration of resolutions for adoption, and will be addressed accordingly by the Board. All emails must be submitted and received by the Clerk of the Board no later than noon of the corresponding Regular Meeting date and, as is always the case, must include the public member’s full name and town of residence and resolution number to which comments are being referred for the record. Agendas will be posted for the public’s viewing on the County’s official website at: www.ucnj.org/freeholders


Freeholder Board Meeting Schedule Amendments

In light of the public health emergency caused by Coronavirus, and the subsequent issuance of the Governor’s Executive Order 107, The Board of Chosen Freeholders of the County of Union (the Board), effective April 2, 2020 and until further notice, will conduct all future meetings remotely and by electronic means without providing a physical meeting place. 

Additionally, while the Board will continue to meet on their regularly scheduled meeting dates, please note the time for the Agenda Setting Sessions has been changed to a new commencement time of 5:00pm.  The Regular Meeting will continue to commence as soon as possible after the Agenda Setting Session. 

In accordance with N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 (the “Open Public Meetings Act”) and in adherence to the Department of Community Affairs, Division of Local Government Services (DLGS) guidelines, the Agenda Setting Session and the Regular Meeting  will be open to the public by electronic means, and as such, members of the public may view the meeting by livestream at ucnj.org/freeholders.

Any member of the public wishing to participate in the meeting, can do so by emailing comments relative to resolutions being offered for adoption and/or on any governmental issue that a member of the public feels may be of concern to the residents of the county to the Clerk of the Board at jpellettiere@ucnj.org. Agendas will be posted for the public’s viewing on the County’s official website at: www.ucnj.org/freeholders.  All relevant comments received will be read into the record during each Regular Meeting’s Public Comment Portion, prior to the Board’s consideration of resolutions for adoption, and will be addressed accordingly by the Board. All emails must be submitted and received by the Clerk of the Board no later than noon of the corresponding Regular Meeting date and, as is always the case, must include the public member’s full name and town of residence and resolution number to which comments are being referred for the record.

James E. Pellettiere, RMC
Clerk of the Board of Chosen Freeholders
County of Union

County Clerk Office

County Clerk

Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi announces that beginning on Tuesday, June 2, the County Clerk’s offices will begin in-person appointments to swear in notaries and assist persons seeking to register trade names, tax waivers and clerk’s certificates.

Everyone seeking these services in person is required to make an appointment in advance and wear a face mask at all times, in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. No other in-person services are available at this time.

Elizabeth – Effective Immediately – In-person appointments can be made for the County Clerk’s main office in Elizabeth, by calling the Business Division at 908-527-4966 (office hours are 7:30 am – 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday):

  • Notary swearing-in
  • Tax waivers
  • Clerk’s certificates
  • Trade names

Beginning on Monday, June 1st –  In-person appointments can be made for the County Clerks’ annex office in Westfield, by calling 908-654-9859 (office hours are 8:00 am – 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday):

  • Notary swearing-in
  • Clerk’s certificates
  • Trade names

Any Notaries whose commission date has expired should call the New Jersey Department of the Treasury at 609-292-9292 for assistance

Please note that the County Clerk’s passport services have been suspended except for life-or-death emergencies within three days of travel, in accordance with U.S. State Department guidelines


Primary Election Day Date Change

Governor Murphy announced Executive Order Number 120, in response to the COVID-19 public health crisis. This Executive Order directs the Primary Election to be held on July 7, 2020. View revised calendar relating to the Primary Election.


Message from the County Clerk

During this unprecedented crisis we recognize the critical need for land recordings to be processed expeditiously. The Union County Clerk Office will continue to offer all property recording services during normal hours.

For your safety and that of staff there is no public access to the physical office spaces .  Services are conducted by telephone consultation, internet, mail or email.  I urge all frequent submitters to contact one of our e-filing vendors to facilitate the quick turnaround of recordings.

Thank you for your assistance and be safe.

Joanne Rajoppi
Union County Clerk


Primary Election Ballot Position Drawing

The Primary Election ballot position drawing was held on Thursday, April 9th at 3:00 p.m. as designated by law. Due to the Covid-19 public health crisis the drawing was live-streamed on Facebook. View ballot. Video video.


County/Town Electronic Candidate Petitions


Passport Office

  • Passport applicants and holders are further advised that the U.S. Department of State will honor all expedited service of passports submitted prior to March 18 with two- to four-week service. Regular passport renewals and new passports will be delayed due to the COVID-19 outbreak.  In addition, a ban on all international travel has been announced by the State Department.

 


Notaries

  • Notaries who receive their commission during this time should be advised that the New Jersey Treasury Department has given assurance that the 90-day deadline to be sworn in will be extended.  Visit state.nj.us/treasury/revenue


Land Records

  • Frequent land records submitters, such as law firms and banks, are encouraged to use an e-filing service (the vendors used by the County Clerk are Corporation Service Company and SimpliFile).

Elections

Governor Murphy announced Executive Order Number 120, in response to the COVID-19 public health crisis. This Executive Order directs the Primary Election to be held on July 7, 2020. All deadlines associated with the Primary Election will be pushed back. Specific dates will be forthcoming. Ballot Drawing will take place Thursday, April 9th at 3 pm as required by law.

During the COVID 19 crisis, County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi has taken several initiatives in light of the challenges presented by the virus. We are deeply concerned about the safety of our voters and well as their democratic right to vote.

  • Vote by Mail is the most safe and secure option for the Primary Election. Download the application located on our app and website.

  • Email ucvote@ucnj.org with any change of addresses, especially for college and out of state students who are now home.

  • Return paid postage on all Vote by Mail ballots is implemented for the July Primary Election.

  • Safe, secure peel and stick envelopes is implemented for VBM ballots and inner certificate envelopes for the June Primary Election.

Board of Elections

Board of Elections

On April 8, 2020, Governor Murphy announced Executive Order Number 120, in response to the COVID-19 public health crisis. This Executive Order directs the Primary Election to be held on July 7, 2020. Many deadlines associated with the Primary Election will be pushed back. Specific dates will be forthcoming

  • Voter outreach events for the month of April are cancelled.
  • Available for remote assistance only. Voters and other Union County residents can reach the Board of Elections by email at ucboe@ucnj.org or by leaving a phone message at 908-527-4121. All email and phone messages will be returned.
  • Reminder for Union County Voters: April 8th is the Deadline to Change Party Affiliation for June 2nd Primary Election. The Union County Board of Elections is currently working remotely. Voters who wish to process changes to their party affiliation can do so only by mail at this time as an original signature is required. Details.

Parks and Recreation

Parks and Recreation

Special Event Updates – The Summer Arts Concert series for 2020 has been canceled.

Archery Update – Archery Range reopening with adjustments 


Union County parks are now partially re-opened for limited and passive activities only, in accordance with statewide restrictions issued by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. The County’s two golf courses will open next week, after routine maintenance is conducted.

“Union County parks will re-open under guidelines that are consistent with the statewide plan, which provides for residents to benefit from healthy outdoor activities while diligently observing precautions against spreading or contracting COVID-19,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella.

“As a reminder, the virus does not disappear outside,” Mirabella added. “Please be safe, and help save lives by observing the six-foot social distance guideline and other rules for visiting County parks during this time.”

Union County parks are open on the following basis:

  • All group activities, including picnics and other gatherings remain prohibited.
  • Only individual activities are permitted, such as walking, jogging, bicycling, and fishing. For these activities, individuals may be accompanied by family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners.
  • Park visitors must stay on marked paths and observe signage for social distancing.
  • Park visitors are encouraged to wear masks.

The following facilities remain closed until further notice:

  • Restrooms
  • Picnic areas
  • Athletic fields
  • Playgrounds and exercise stations
  • Trailside Nature & Science Center
  • Warinanco Sports Center
  • Watchung Stable
  • Echo Lake and Warinanco dog parks

Visitors are advised to avoid congested areas. When using pathways and trails give way to others, in order to maintain a six-foot social distance.

Visitors are also advised to observe other COVID-19 preventive measures including: wash hands frequently, do not touch face, cover coughs and sneezes with tissue or elbow, do not go out if sick, stay away from sick people, and use a face mask for additional protection.

Park visitors please note: Stay on marked trails in order to preserve fragile native habitat in County parks. The taking of plants and other wildlife is prohibited. Share paved paths by keeping to the right unless passing others. Bicycles are permitted only on paved paths. Dogs must be kept on leash. All trash must be carried out where receptacles are full or unavailable. 

For questions or concerns, please contact the Parks Department by email at parksinfo@ucnj.org.

Recycling Events

Recycling Events

  • All countywide recycling events sponsored by Union County have been cancelled during the months of March, April and May.  This applies to Mobile Paper Shredding Events, Household Hazardous Waste Programs, and Scrap Metal Recycling.

Human Services

Human Services

UCDHS Action Line

Rapid, personal assistance with any question, complaint or concern about services is operational for both English and Spanish speaking callers. Calls are being accessed remotely throughout the day. 

Speak with someone about needs for food, shelter, health & mental health services, domestic violence, job search, special medical transportation, senior services, youth services, assistance for the disabled, child immunizations, homelessness, and homelessness prevention, and more, call or email the numbers & address below.

  1. 888-845-3434
  2. 908-558-2288
  3. DHSAction@ucnj.org

American Job Centers 

Both of the American Job Centers (in Elizabeth and Plainfield) closed to the public until further notice.

Elizabeth office 908-558-8000
Plainfield office 908-757-9090


Paratransit

Running life-sustaining medical trips only.  All other transportation is cancelled until further notice, including the Route 22 Safety Shuttle.   


Intoxicated Driving Resource Center

Due to the New Jersey State of Emergency regarding the COVID-19 virus, all Union County Intoxicated Driving Resource Center (IDRC) classes are cancelled until further notice.  If you have questions or were scheduled for a class that has been cancelled, please email idrc@ucnj.org or call 908-527-4791 or 908-527-4804 to provide your current contact information so that you receive information about your new class date.  Please note that there may be a delay in IDRC response due to increased call/email volume during this time.


Meals on Wheels

All remaining congregate sites are closed. Any person who previously ate at one of the 23 congregate meals sites and is unable to sustain without this assistance should call Union County Meals on Wheels at 908-527-4870; 908-527-4858. Spanish speaking residents may call 908-527-4863.

Home delivered meals for persons with disabilities and seniors over 60 and older will continue and may be expanded for persons in need of food delivery in their homes.


Emergency Shelter for Persons who are Homeless

Persons who are homeless, or anyone assisting a homeless person can call the Division of Social Services at 908-965-2700. All arrangements for assistance will be made by phone.

After 4:00 p.m., all after-hours referrals for shelter should be directed to the Statewide Homeless Hotline, 211 or 877-652-1148.


SNAP Food Stamps, Cash Assistance and Work Requirements

To apply for SNAP food assistance, or cash assistance under the Work First New Jersey program, Union County residents may do so online at org. An office visit is not required, as the Union County Division of Social Services will have staff is available to conduct interviews by phone.

Work First New Jersey cash assistance clients who are due for their case to be reviewed in March or April will receive a 60-day extension. The extension is automatic and does not require an office visit.

SNAP food assistance or Work First New Jersey cash assistance clients are excused from their work activity requirement without penalty. This includes people who are applying for Work First New Jersey General Assistance and who are in a work activity for 28 days while their application is being reviewed. Please note that voluntary participation in a work activity is allowed, if the activity is conducted in accordance with social distancing guidelines for preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Clients are encouraged to mail or fax any needed paperwork to the Division of Social Services offices. For those dropping off papers by hand, use the drop boxes located in the front lobbies of the Social Services offices at 342 Westminster Avenue in Elizabeth or 200 West Second Street in Plainfield.

Attention SNAP recipients:  If your case is due to be recertified in March or April and you were unable to get your paperwork in or complete your interview, your case will not be closed. You will receive your benefits on the usual day. Your case will be recertified at some point in the future, once this public health crisis has settled. In the meantime, you will continue to receive SNAP benefits.

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Social Services

Until further notice, the new hours of operation are Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The offices are closed on Fridays. In order to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus, residents are encouraged to conduct business with the two offices by phone:

  • Elizabeth Office: 908-965-2700
  • Plainfield Office: 908-791-7000

As needed, in-person service is also available at both offices:

  • Elizabeth Office: 342 Westminster Avenue
  • Plainfield Office: 200 West Second Street

Any documents on paper may be submitted by drop box, located in the lobbies of both offices.

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Mental Health Disaster Response

Should you or someone you know need information about Union County Mental Health Services, for 24 Hour Emergency Psychiatric services, please contact:

  • Mobile Community Outreach (Adults): 908-994-7131
  • Union County Mobile Response & Stabilization (Children): 877-652-7624
  • RWJ University Hospital: 732-381-4200
  • Overlook Hospital: 908-522-2000

Should you need information about mental health or addiction services in Union County, please dial: 908-527-4846 or 908-527-4844.


24 Hour Rape Crisis Hotline

Anyone in need of assistance due to sexual assault should call the 24 hour hotline: 908-233-RAPE


Family Crisis Information

24/7 response within 1 hour for youths in crisis or unable to remain in their homes by calling 908-514-2313. 


Immunization Clinic

The 40 Parker Road in Elizabeth is operating by appointment only. Immunizations administered by appointment only. Call 908-965-3627 or 908-965-3868.

Sheriff

Sheriff

  • Sheriff’s Sales are suspended until further notice.
  • Civilian Range is closed until further notice.
  • Youth Academy Registration extended to June 26, 2020.

Surrogate

Surrogate

The Surrogate office is closed to the general public.


Hours of operation effective immediately will be Monday through Friday 8:30 am – 4:30 pm for phone, fax or email only.


During the COVID-19 closure, our office will continue to process paperwork to probate Wills, appoint Administrators and perform other Surrogate appointments.  You can mail or fax the information sheet, death certificate, copy of Will (if applicable) and asset page to our office and the paperwork will be reviewed and processed by the staff.  If you prefer to email, you should email all documents to Susan Dinardo at sdinardo@ucnj.org and to Lisa Brophy at lbrophy@ucnj.org and they will be forwarded to the appropriate clerks for filing during our modified office hours. All paperwork will be mailed or emailed to you and/or your attorney for signatures and returned to our office for filing and preparation of fiduciary documents. 


All Superior Court, Chancery Division, Probate Part matters should be handled in a similar manner.  You may mail new Complaints and Orders to Show Cause to the office for review and filing.  Any emergent matters should be emailed directly to Lisa Brophy at lbrophy@ucnj.org.   She will correspond with counsel or pro se clients about the handling of these matters with the Superior Court Judge.  You may also email Ms. Brophy any new Complaints for filing and they will also be filed during our modified office hours.

Taxation Board

Taxation Board

  • Property tax appeals filings will only be accepted via regular mail or by filing online.
  • The Appeal Deadline is now  July 1st, 2020 as per P.L. 2020, c 35. which was signed into law by Governor Murphy on May 28th, 2020. On July 1st Appeals can be filed online up to midnight (12PM) or must be received by our office by no  later than 4pm.  Appeals postmarked on or before July 1st but not received in our office  until after July 1st will be rejected. 

  • Contact the Taxation Board by email at taxman1@ucnj.org

  • Due to the public health emergency caused by COVID-19, and the subsequent issuance of the Governor’s Executive Order 107, the Union County Board of Taxation effective April 16, 2020 and until further notice, will conduct all future meetings remotely by teleconference  without providing a physical meeting place. Visit their website for meeting details.

Prosecutor

Prosecutor

Public Safety

Public Safety

  • The Child Safety Seat Inspection Program suspended until further notice.
  • The Office of Consumer Affairs is working remotely. Please report suspected fraud, price gouging and other scams online at ucnj.org/public-safety, or call 908-654-9840. All voice mail is checked regularly.

Corrections (County Jail)

Corrections (County Jail)

  • All visits for non-legal matters both contact and non-contact are suspended
  • All volunteer, re-entry services, or counseling services are suspended
  • Any programs that require outside staff or volunteers are suspended
  • Legal visits will be conducted as non-contact visits or via tele-communications.

Superior Court of Union County

Superior Court of Union County

  • Visit their website for information regarding the courts.