Washington Township's youth lacrosse teams are supposed to begin practicing this week, but they still don't have a place to play, Eamonn Twomey, the program's director, said Monday.
Memorial Field is still not ready, township Administrator Catherine Navarro-Steinel said. The contractor who installed new sod last fall estimated that it would not be ready until mid-to-late April because it was installed late in the fall and is still dormant, according to Navarro-Steinel.
Twomey said they had also investigated using the high school field again, but that would not be possible this year because it is only available from 8 to 10 p.m. The lacrosse program includes elementary-aged children.
"We've tried everything, but there's no opther options," Twomey said.
Navarro-Steinel said she and her staff were looking for other facilities in area towns that the teams would be able to use.
"We're diligently working on a field for you," Navarro-Steinel said.
Twomey and Councilman Glenn Beckmeyer said they believed artificial turf could have been installed and be ready to use already. Officials and residents debated the best option for the field for months last year.
"I know for a fact that it could have been done," Beckmeyer said.
Council President Steve Cascio disagreed.
"I don't think the field would have been ready if we'd gone the other way," Cascio said.
Coach Scott Spezial also questioned the decision to re-sod the field instead of .
Some of the same issues that residents brought up last year — including goose feces and mesh that could potentially trip athletes — are still problems, Spezial said.
The township has invited the Bergen County Sheriff's Office K-9 Unit to use the field for training, which officials said will hopefully deter the geese from gathering there. Chemicals will not be used on the field, officials said.
Mayor Janet Sobkowicz also said that she had seen mesh on the field after it was supposed to be removed, but had already made the contractor come back to get it.
"It should be gone," Sobkowicz said. "If it's not, we have a problem."