West Milford backs play-off loan request

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Mayor Michele Dale and the West Milford Township Council have approved a request from the Farm Crest Acres Association, Inc. for an additional loan from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to make repairs to the dam at the Upper Crest Lake and Lower Crest Lake Dam in the Farm Crest Acres community of homes in Oak Ridge.

No expenditure of communal money is involved.

The private association is the operator of two dams located on Farm Crest Lake (Upper Crest Lake Dam and Lower Crest Lake Dam). Both dams were determined to be in need of repairs, improvements and rehabilitation, based on technical surveys.

A dam restoration loan from NJDEP’s Dam Safety Section provides loans to private entities to make necessary repairs to the dam on the condition that the municipality where the dam is located signs a loan agreement as co- borrower. The Association has already secured dam restoration loans of $600,000 for the Upper Crest Lake Dam and $480,000 for the Lower Crest Lake Dam, which township officials signed for the township to be co -borrower.

The initial loan does not fully cover the expected cost of the required repairs to the dam and an additional $100,000 is estimated to be necessary to fully cover the expected cost. The association wishes to submit a second application to the NJDEP loan financing program to carry out all the necessary repairs to the dam. Township officials consider the repair, improvement and rehabilitation of the two dams and the execution of NJDEP loans to be in the best interests of township residents.

The latest decision from the township’s governing body gives the mayor and township clerk the authority to execute the NJDEP loan agreement if the association presents a co-borrower agreement acceptable to the township.

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