Ice Skating Could Be Prohibited in Bloomingdale With New Ordinance

Council hopes to prevent accidents similar to that which led to the deaths of two Mount Olive teens last month.

It's not about taking the fun away. It's about saving lives.

Bloomingdale Mayor Jonathan Dunleavy said he is hopeful the public understands that the intentions of an ordinance that will be up for a vote at next week's council meeting prohibiting ice skating on borough ponds are to ensure safety of residents, particularly youth.

The council began discussion on the ordinance applicable to the two public ponds-Bogue Pond and Oakwood Lake-during a council meeting on Feb. 5. Currently, Dunleavy said, ice activities are not encouraged but there is not a formal restriction on the books.

"The policy of the borough is if the police saw [people] skating, they would ask them to stop," the mayor said.

Dunleavy said consideration of the formal ordinance began following the accidental deaths of of Budd Lake while ice-fishing last month. Authorities spent days recovering the bodies of the teenagers as the community and several surrounding communities mourned their loss.

The biggest concern of Bloomingdale police officers is that the ponds are not monitored. Without restricting the ice activities, Dunleavy said the borough could be found liable for accidents that may occur.

"If you don't enforce it and don't address it, then you're kind of condoning it because of not having an ordinance," he said.

The ordinance would not have an effect on the private lakes, Dunleavy said, as the private communities in which they are located have control over lake activities.

If the ordinance passes after the public hearing, signs explaining the restrictions would be hung near the ponds. The public hearing will be held Feb. 19 at 7 p.m.

Rick February 15, 2013 at 04:34 PM
This is a great opportunity for us to put something into our town and our counsel will need many opinions to make an informed decision. We should publicize this debate in as many public venues as possible to come up with the information that will be used to make an informed decision. This forum offers us a chance to see what opinions may be presented in the meeting giving each of us time to prepare. Example: Portable outdoor ice-rink may be a cost effective solution to high issuance costs due in part to the risk of drowning in deeper waters. If necessary a committee may need to be formed to gather details and make a recommendation. It seem clear from the comments here we are all interested in finding a solution to keeping ice-skating part of the beauty of Bloomingdale.
Gerry Iannuzzi February 17, 2013 at 02:05 PM
Thank you for all the comments. I am sincere with my offer to use my fish finder to do a depth study on both ponds this spring. I am hoping my children and I will be able to enjoy ice skating and pond hockey in the future. Typically, we get a few weeks each winter where conditions are good enough.
Doug Van Dyk February 17, 2013 at 11:13 PM
so biking on the town streets would bring the same liability..
Doug Van Dyk February 17, 2013 at 11:27 PM
Allright the auto analogy might not count,but how about riding your bike or walking down the street.
Brian Kwiatkowski February 20, 2013 at 10:45 PM
We as a country really need to do something to curb our litigious culture. I remember the old days when you could go to a friend's house, take a tumble down his stairs, bust up your chin, get laughed at, then haul your bloody chin and busted ego to the medicine cabinet to grab a band-aid. Today, you can tack on a cool million on top of that band-aid, at the expense of your friend, of course. Just the other day, I was walking in a supermarket parking lot and a lady backed into me with her car. I fell down, got up, shook it off, and continued on my merry way. Another woman, a couple spots down, says to me "ya know, if ya played your cards right, ya could have gotten a ton of cash for that." My response being, "no thanks, I'm a big boy, I can take a punch." It's people like this that destroy our freedoms, and our childrens' ice skating privileges. Just ridiculous...


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