TRENTON - Sen. Michael Testa’s (R-1st) legislation that would allow barbershops and hair salons to bring their business to their customers was approved by the state Senate Feb. 19.
“The pandemic has taught us that residents, schools and businesses must be adaptable,” stated Testa. “Mobile service will open doors to new opportunities for hard-working professionals with ambitions to grow their business and serve more customers.”
According to a release, the bill is also sponsored by Senate President Steve Sweeney. The Assembly version (A-5019) is sponsored by Testa’s colleagues, Assemblyman Antwan McClellan and Assemblyman Erik Simonsen (both R-1st).
“Given the popularity of food trucks and the renewed emphasis on convenience and safety during the pandemic, barbershops and hair salons on wheels makes sense,” stated Testa. “There will always be a demand for brick-and-mortar facilities, but mobile units will have their place bringing personal care to clients with busy schedules who appreciate the accessibility.”
The bill (S-2996) allows hairstyling licensees of the Board of Cosmetology Hairstyling to provide services in specially equipped trucks or trailers. The measure defines “mobile facility” as a licensed shop capable of being moved from location to location, and the rolling shop must have a minimum of 75 square feet of floor space, contain a restroom, and meet other criteria.
Testa introduced the bill in September, after discussing the potential with a constituent, Danny Bermudez, who operates The Dugout Barbershop, in Vineland.
“Society has changed immensely during this pandemic,” stated Bermudez. “I feel we can better serve customers in a one-on-one setting, rather than a barbershop full of people. We would be able to offer the same services you would receive at a brick-and-mortar shop inside a mobile barbershop. We could bring our shop to customers with compromised immune systems, elderly, and our first-responders, doctors and nurses, without the fear and uncertainties we face today.”
Under the bill, services would be provided to clients only when the facilities are stationary, and shops would be required to provide to the Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling a 14-day location schedule at least two weeks in advance of the first scheduled date to accommodate random inspections.