Lidl supermarkets will pay its U.S. employees an additional $200 as an incentive to take the coronavirus vaccine.

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The chain, with 17 locations in New Jersey, said than internal survey found that 8 in 10 workers plan to get the vaccine as soon as it becomes available for them.

Grocery workers are not prioritized to receive the vaccine in New Jersey although they could qualify if they are over the age of 65 or between age 16 and 64 with certain pre-existing medical conditions.

"We are proud to provide our employees the resources they need to receive the COVID-19 vaccine free of any obstacles,” Lidl U.S. CEO Johannes Fieber said in a written statement.

The additional payment will help offset the costs associated with vaccine administration, including travel costs and childcare. The company said it will also accommodate employee schedules for vaccine appointments.

Until the Biden administration gets a handle on distribution of the vaccine, the workers will likely have a long wait.

Gov. Phil Murphy told CNBC’s Shepherd Smith on Wednesday night that he had been critical of Walgreens roll out of the vaccine because they have the most dosages.

“They basically amassed these doses, they schedule visits to long-term care nursing homes, extended living, and they’re punching under their weight, particularly Walgreens, and that’s where most of the yet to be used doses are,” Murphy said.

He said Walgreens need to “put more bodies on the case” to administer more doses and blames the federal government  for not supplying more vaccine.

President Joe Biden made 100 million shots in his first 100 days in office a goal of his plan for the coronavirus.

He directed the Federal Emergency Management Agency to begin setting up vaccination centers, aiming to have 100 up and running in a month. He's ordering the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to begin a program to make vaccines available through local pharmacies starting next month. And he's mobilizing the Public Health Service to deploy to assist localities in vaccinations.

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Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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