The Toms River Township in New Jersey cited a homeowner who allowed their house to be rented for a pool party with 85 children.
According to a press release from the township, two summonses were issued to the North Dover section homeowner for violating two ordinances: 579-5.c and 335-43, which pertain to failure to obtain a permit for commercial use of a swimming pool and renting a pool, respectively.
Code enforcement officers, who were working with the mayor’s quality of life task force, investigated the incident on July 16 between 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. The officers saw two buses delivering the 85 minors to the party. The children paid a fee to use the homeowner’s pool.
The investigation is ongoing, but there haven’t been any other violations found. An August 10 court date was set.
Toms River Mayor Maurice Hill said that enforcing these ordinances was an important part of his role as mayor.
“The Township has ordinances in place which prohibit daily rentals of houses and swimming pools in residential neighborhoods. As Mayor, it is my job to enforce these ordinances and I remind our residents that any similar violations will be addressed in the same manner,” Hill said in a statement.
People commented on the township’s Facebook post regarding the incident, supporting Hill for enforcing the ordinances. “Good for Mayor Hill! Same is happening in Jackson but code enforcement tells residents who complain ‘there’s nothing we can do about that,'” one person wrote.
Other people criticized the homeowners for letting people rent out the pool. “It needs to stop! No residents deserve to have their neighborhood become like a community pool,” a resident wrote.
Residents also raised concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic, saying that renting out the pool was not practicing social distancing guidelines. “Why would someone do this, just for the money? Do they not care about social distancing and protection from infection ? Why are there not STIFF fines for this?? Come on Town, Man up,” the resident wrote.
New Jersey officials allowed public pools to reopen beginning in June. According to guidance from the state, the New Jersey Department of Health recommends pool operators review CDC guidelines about pools reopening.
The Toms River Township Police Department did not respond to Newsweek’s emailed request for comment. Newsweek reached out to the Toms River Township mayor’s office, but did not receive an on-the-record comment in time for publication.
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