Jackson officials will permit use of municipal parks, recreation facilities

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JACKSON – Municipal officials in Jackson will immediately permit the use of township parks and recreation facilities as restrictions begin to be scaled back during the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

During the May 12 meeting of the Township Council, Vice President Alex Sauickie read a statement from Mayor Michael Reina, who said:

“It is certainly no secret that I believe Gov. (Phil) Murphy has gone too far with certain aspects of his executive orders regarding the pandemic. By law, the township cannot override these orders, as much as we may wish to do so.

“However, in one area municipalities such as Jackson have certain authority, and that is over our parks and tecreation facilities.

“(We) will immediately permit the use of township recreation facilities for various means, provided (individuals) comply with social distancing guidelines and limit the number of participants to no more than 10 individuals. Parents or guests must remain in their vehicles or leave the facility during such activities.

“These fields will be permitted to be used by soccer, lacrosse, baseball, football and softball coaches and their teams, provided there are no game simulated scrimmages, or contact drills, no camps or training clinics, or league games, and no spectators permitted on the field, sidelines or bleachers,” Reina said in his statement.

Municipal basketball and tennis courts may be used, “however, no basketball games will be permitted. I recognize teams often contain more than eight or nine players, along with the coach.

“For this reason, teams may have to divide their roster to participate in this manner until such time as the governor lifts further restrictions pursuant to his executive orders.

“As the weather improves, our children need to be provided with recreation (and) recreational facilities to meet their needs while ensuring their health and safety. For this reason, I want to make sure all Jackson residents are aware that our fields and facilities may be used in accordance with the guidelines,” Reina said in the statement.