More information was provided by the contractor and state agencies to give further detail on spraying that was conducted on Saturday, August 2nd, on Herm Shaw Field.
The following day, Board Of Education (BOE) member Alex Balaban posted a message on an online forum notifying residents of the spraying, stating that it was in response to inquiries he received from neighbors. he stated then, “I was concerned about chemicals utilized and asked questions from H.S. administration on Thursday. BOE was informed via e-mail about this event on Thursday [July 31st].”
The concern for residents was that National Night Out activities – including fireworks – were going to be held on Tuesday, August 5th, on the high school fields.
In researching the chemicals listed, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) was contacted to find out if all protocols were followed.
The notification made by the company was provided as a courtesy since there was no legal obligation to do so, in line with IPM (Integrated Pest Management) Program for School Districts.
Further investigation of the chemicals showed that the time that people cannot use the fields in 12 hours. The 48-hour notice was, according to a state official who spoke a state official who wished to remain anonymous, was going above and beyond the required time limit. He added, “They were trying to be a good neighbor because they weren’t required to provide any notice.”
A section of IPM requires notification of school administration only if a ‘student authorized activity’ was to occur on the fields. That means use of the fields for school purposes. No notification was needed for use of the fields for National Night Out since that was not ‘student authorized activity’. Even if notice had been given, the time limit of 48-hours was being over cautious on the part of the contractor.