Middlebush Park Football Game Noise Issue Returns To Township Council

Township Councilwoman Roz Sherman said an agreement between the council and Pop Warner football over noise at Middlebush Park was broken.

The on-again, off-again dispute over amplification of Pop Warner football games at Middlebush Park is apparently on again.

The topic resurfaced at the Dec. 13 Township Council meeting, and even though the problem has been rectified, it resulted in a minor dustup between Councilwoman Roz Sherman (D-Ward 2) and Councilman Carl R.A. Wright (D-Ward 4).

The topic was broached by Jerry Primus, the newly elected president of the Franklin Township Pop Warner program. Primus told the council that he was there in an effort to quash any problems that might be brewing as a result of some noise complaints from residents whose homes abut the park.

Keith Stewart, chairman of the township’s Advisory Recreation Council, said that the township tolerates other forms of noise, such as fireworks at The Palace for weddings and the St. Matthias summer carnival.

Why, he asked, couldn’t residents tolerate noise from the football field for eight days during the year.

To read more about the Middlebush Park loudspeaker issue, click here.

Mayor Phil Kramer said that the council is looking at the fireworks issue, and may be able to take some action soon.

Certain stipulations were attached to the council’s approval of a permanent PA system for use by the football program. Those stipulations included leaving the system’s volume at a certain level, and barring access to the system’s controls by locking the unit.

Apparently someone broke through the locks and raised the volume, leading to at least two noise complaints by neighbors. There was also use of an air horn that prompted a complaint.

Sherman said Pop Warner broke the agreement with the township, in that the agreed-upon sound level was not observed.

Wright took exception to that, saying the council originally broke an agreement with Pop Warner when it initially denied the use of amplification in the park. That denial was reversed, after a compromise was reached between Pop Warner and the park’s neighbors.

Saying he was “tired” of talking about the issue, Wright suggested that critics come to a home game in August to hear for themselves.

“Then we can go from there,” he said.


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