Assemblywoman BettyLou DeCroce and Assemblyman Jay Webber discussed Lake Hopatcong’s financial woes on their inaugural Mobile Office Hour visit to Jefferson Township on Wednesday.
“This lake should be sacred to the state,” DeCroce said. “It’s the largest natural lake in New Jersey and there should be a concerted effort throughout the state to protect it.”
DeCroce said she grew up in the area, and she and her deceased husband Alex DeCroce had a boat that they frequently used on the lake.
“I have wonderful memories of the lake, and I want to see it protected,” she said.
DeCroce said that she met with Jefferson Township Mayor Russell Felter, who is also the chairman of the Lake Hopatcong Commission, to discuss alternative methods of funding for the lake.
“Eventually this will work,” she said of relieving the lake’s financial burden. “We are working on several different things now, but there’s nothing I can discuss publicly yet.”
Webber added that he and DeCroce understand that the lake is a priority.
“We’ve come up with creative ways to solve some of the problems, like the DEP taking over the weed harvesting,” Webber said. “Now we have to work with the administration on both sides of the aisle to keep coming up with creative solutions until something more permanent is in place.”
As part of their mobile office hours, the pair will be visiting every town in the 26th district, which they represent, between now and April.
“It’s not always easy for our constituents to get to our office during the day,” DeCroce said. “We want to be available to them in their community.”