LEWISBORO, N.Y. – The Town Board, in conjunction with the Parks and Recreation Department is in the process of drafting a new town ordinance that will officially limit the use of town public recreation facilities by out-of-town groups and individuals and provides police with more authority to deal with such situations.
“Currently, the only rules we have is that the park is open from dusk to dawn, there’s no drinking and no smoking,” said Recreation Director Dana Mayclim. “We've had a lot of out-of-town residents coming in thinking that it’s a county park.”
Technically, the town park’s facilities are for Lewisboro residents only and permits are required to use the pool.
Mayclim and several members of the board said it’s unfair to ask the high-school-aged employees who monitor pool use to have to stand up to adults.
“Teens are not equipped to confront adults and lay down the law,” Mayclim said. “That’s expecting a lot from young adults.”
Deputy Superintendent Peter DeLucia said he recently had to intervene in a situation while he and his family were at the pool. He said some non-residents had come into the park and were using the pavilion and had gotten into the pool area and were being confrontational with the teen in charge.
“Police will have guidelines and jurisdiction [under the new ordinance] that they didn't have before,” Mayclim said. “This puts more authority into the hands of the cops.”
Board member Frank Kelly said it’s a matter of the town protecting its own property.
“Right now, the police have no mechanism, but we have to find a way to protect our investments,” he said. “It’s a problem in need of a solution.”
Mayclim has been working with the Parks and Recreation Advisory Council for the past year to draft the new ordinance.
The proposed ordinance lays out specific uses that require permits, including the use of public recreation facilities, vending and camping. Those seeking a permit would have to file an application and include a certificate of insurance.
The new law also would address those who violate the requirements. The current draft states: “Any person violating any provision of this chapter shall be fined in an amount determined by the Town Board for each offense.”
The Town Board is in the process of reviewing the council's proposed ordinance in an effort to produce a final draft. The board hopes to have a public hearing on the matter July 2.