School's wetlands walkway rehabilitated

| 30 Sep 2011 | 09:46

    BYRAM — A walking path around a small, specially created wetlands in the woods near the Byram schools has been cleaned up with the help of a local resident and workers from Sussex County Sheriff’s Labor Assistance Program (SLAP). The work was arranged by Byram Township’s Recreation Director Janet Meisner and Planning Assistant Margaret McGarrity. Cranberry Lake resident Roy Ann Blakeley initiated the work, clipping overgrown vegetation and clearing several years of siltation and weed growth from the circular pathway. SLAP workers spent three days completing the weeding and laying new wood chips along the path. SLAP workers will complete the resurfacing of the last short section after more wood chips are obtained, and Blakeley will help finalize the repairs. SLAP Officers Walter Chadwick, Jason Van Der Wende, and Brian Snyder organized and monitored 112 total weekend hours of work from about two dozen minor offenders at the site, last December and in early June. SLAP offenders are charged $8 per work day, which funds the program. The circular wetlands was created several years ago by the NJ Department of Transportation to replace other wetlands destroyed in a highway project along the Route 206 corridor. The area was designed to become a fully-functioning wetlands within the Lubbers Run corridor and a habitat for birds and wildlife. A wide range of native vegetation has grown up, including wild irises, cat-tails, and a variety of shrubs, wildflowers, and small trees Benches along the path provide places to sit and bird-watch.