RARITAN, NJ - With the coronavirus pandemic closing programs, activities and events, and the timeline for reopening still uncertain, decisions have not yet been made with regard to the future of the Raritan Borough summer camp.

Unrelated to the pandemic, the questions about the program have been hanging over the borough’s head for months now.

During the public comment portion of Tuesday’s council meeting, two of the moms who have been vocal and proactive about the camp spoke.

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Carrieann Youngman and Kelly Anne Gallagher were a part of a group that sent the council a copy of a staff handbook and a policy and procedures manual prepared by residents. On their own, a group of residents met with the former camp director, Amy Urbanowicz, to compile the necessary documents.

The manual and handbook were sent just prior to the start of the March 10 meeting, not leaving enough time for review by council members.
The camp had been run successfully for the past three years, but the recreation department under new leadership has raised liability issues. 

Raritan attorney Bill Robertson was consulted, and a list of steps to be taken to protect the borough and provide optimum safety for the children was compiled.

That list is what was addressed by the informal resident committee.

At the last in-person meeting, the council held off on a final determination about the camp opening for the 2020 season until the fire marshal can determine the maximum occupancy capacity at the pool house where campers go in inclement weather.   

Joining into the online meeting, Youngman questioned whether the occupancy issue had been resolved and asked where things stand.

The pool house capacity has not been determined, but Mayor Zachary Bray promised it will get done and the camp issue will be on the next council meeting agenda. Also, by the next meeting, information about the ability to get the borough pool open will be available.

Gallagher said that once the council reviews the documents, if updates need to be made, the offer to make those changes still stands.  

Even though this summer is questionable due to the pandemic, neither residents nor the governing body said they want to see this issue unresolved going forward.