Over the weekend, local social media was buzzing with an image of a sign posted on the door of NJA Auctions, located in the Simmons Plaza in Saugerties, which stated the use of face masks and social-distancing would not be enforced. “If this makes you uncomfortable, we advise that you do not enter. You are a free citizen here to make your own decision.”
The message of defiance was shared widely on social media and, according to town Police Chief Joseph Sinagra, led to a total of 13 complaint referrals from the New York State on PAUSE Enforcement Task Force. The complaints stated that the business, which is not essential according to state criteria, was open on Saturday, May 16 with many customers in attendance.
Earlier today, the Town of Saugerties Building Department accompanied by Saugerties Police served Steve Jolley, the owner of NJA Auctions, with a Cease and Desist Order, closing the business down until the state reopens this class of business.
“Failure by NJA Auctions to comply with the building department order in addition to the governor’s executive order will result in law enforcement action in the form of criminal charges lodged against the owner and anyone else found to be in violation of the law,” said Sinagra.
The NJA Auctions Facebook page addressed the situation yesterday.
“As all of you know that actually took the time to talk, this was not about the money,” reads the post. “This was about our rights and our freedom. I will continue to do my business, my way. Friendly, safe and respectful to those who show me the same.”
It stated that the business had been open for a month though the sign had only been up a few days. “Now one little crybaby takes a picture and here comes the hoard.”
You read the rest of the post here.