GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP — Township Council is working on a solution to keep its skate park open.
The council proposed an ordinance at Tuesday’s meeting that would allow police to confiscate equipment from people who use the skate park at the municipal complex and do not follow the rules.
Under the ordinance — which the council will vote on at the July 10 meeting — police could confiscate a skateboard or bike if a rider ignores police warnings and continues to disobey the rules.
The resident or his parents would then have to pay a $65 processing fee to get the item returned.
The ordinance also would allow police to take the offender to Municipal Court, where he would face a fine not to exceed $250 if convicted.
“We need a strong deterrent,” said Deputy Mayor Tony Coppola. “We want to have the park open for the benefit of all the residents.”
The township closed the park earlier this month because a number of young riders did not follow the rules. The council discussed the new ordinance at the June 12 meeting and decided to reopen it, but allowed the police to close the park again if the problems continued. The park has been reopened and closed several times since, said police Chief Pat Moran, noting officers close it after they witness a few infractions.
Also at the meeting, Township Manager Arch Liston said the township will do mock budgets in July to get a sense of what is needed for the 2013 budget.
In April, Liston said the township is facing a shortfall of between $1.1 million and $1.2 million and would need to have layoffs.
Liston said the 2012 budget is in “decent shape” and the appropriations are “right on schedule,” but it’s too early to tell about decisions for next year.
In other business:
-- The council renewed a liquor license for JD’s Pub & Grille on South New York Road. Liston had recommended the council not renew it after a fight occurred in April that resulted in seven arrests and three injured officers.
Liston said they met with the business’ attorneys and they agreed to limit the number of college nights. The bar had brought in students from Richard Stockton College on Thursdays during the school year. The fight occurred during a college night.
“The establishment has been very cooperative in the process,” Liston said. “I have to say they have been very helpful with the situation,”
Moran said JD’s has always been supportive of the community. “They did whatever they needed to do to help us out,” he said.
A manager declined to comment on the situation when reached by phone Tuesday afternoon.
-- The council also declined to pass a resolution that would ask the state’s Turnpike Authority to reconsider its plans on exits 41 and 44 on the Garden State Parkway.
Mayor Don Purdy said they hope to rework the language to make it less harsh. The mayor said he hopes to get a public hearing for local residents so they can provide input on the plans.
“I think Galloway Township has been put on the back burner with this,” he said. “There is a lot of confusion in the public with what is going on with that interchange.”
-- The township has begun its furlough days on Friday. To save money, township offices will be closed on Fridays between June 15 and Aug. 30.
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