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  • Writer's pictureThe Hammonton Gazette

Spraying coming for Hamm. Lake

courtesy photo

HAMMONTON—Hammonton Lake will be sprayed this year after the New Jersey Pinelands Commission (NJPC) approved parameters.

At the June Parks and Recreation Commission meeting, Councilman Sam Rodio informed the Commission that after months of waiting, the town finally got the approval to spray the lake.

Only a portion of the lake will be sprayed with chemicals to get rid of bladderwort. The town is only allowed to do a certain percentage of the lake because there are endangered species of bladderwort that are required to be protected.

The spraying of the lake will be done by a company called Lake Management Sciences Incorporated. Rodio said that the spraying will be done in a single day. There is not a set date for the spraying at this time, but Rodio said that they intend to have it done by the first week of July.

The spraying service has been paid for by the town. The total cost is $41,000. Homeowners on the lake will be notified of the spraying via mail in the coming days.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) is the entity that approves the lake spraying, but according to Rodio, the NJDEP would only approve spraying if the NJPC signed off on it as well. Since the NJPC has agreed, the permit will be obtained in the coming days.

When the town applied to have the spraying done, they wanted approval for the next three years. Per Rodio, the NJPC only felt comfortable giving the OK for one year and seeing if everything runs smoothly before approving any more spraying. After this year, the town will have to seek permission from NJPC and DEP again to continue spraying.

Rodio informed the Commission that a loan that the town applied for to fix up the area at 11th Street Park was denied. The Commission was very hopeful about receiving the low-interest loan, but unfortunately the loan was received by another applicant.

“This was the first time we were asking (for the loan) and they felt there were a lot of other towns asking a lot longer than us. They only have so much money they can give out, at that rate,” Rodio said.

Obtaining money for 11th Street Park is not out of the picture yet, according to Rodio. He said that there will be other opportunities to apply for a loan in both September and February.

Later in his reports, Rodio announced to the Commission that the town had received a grant recently for $67,000 to build a playground. They are planning to use the funds to build a playground near Hammonton Lake.

Six use of facility requests were approved by the Commission. Hammonton High School’s dates for their upcoming Cross Country meets; One Nation Softball to use 11th Street Park on June 22 and July 6; NJ State Police for their Softball tournament at 11th Street on Aug. 8; and a wedding vow exchange at Hammonton Lake Park on Oct. 5. Some of these entities have not shown proof of insurance, so the Commission approved these on the basis that said entities provide the needed proof of insurance.

The Commission also approved both Hammonton Youth Soccer Association’s (HYSA) upcoming 2024 schedule and St. Joseph’s summer schedule. Parks and Recreation leader Adam Monacelli still must work out the schedules of HYSA and St. Joseph’s to avoid any time conflicts.

Monacelli updated the Commission that there will be a fireworks show this year on the Fourth of July. The fireworks are usually shot from the Hammonton Army National Guard office, but this year they will be shot across the street at the Hammonton Little League field. The state requested that the location be moved.

“The State said they didn’t want us there, so we moved across the street,” Monacelli said.

Monacelli informed the Commission that since the fireworks will now be on Hammonton property, the town will not have to pay for a street sweeper to come the following day, which is something they have had to do in years past.

There will be no July meeting for the Parks and Recreation Commission. The next meeting will be at 7 p.m. on August 20 at town hall. As always, these meetings are open to the public.

This article was produced in collaboration with New Jersey Civic Information Consortium and Rowan University.


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