Homeowners put herbicide in GWL

Private group proactive in fighting weed problem

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  • Photo provided A member of the Allied Biological team applies the herbicide "Reward" to Greenwood Lake on Tuesday. It was organized and paid for by private homeowners.

  • Paul Zarrillo, left, spearheaded applying an herbicide to Greenwood Lake in the fight against the weeds. Here he is seen with members of Allied Biological, including Glenn Sullivan, second from left, president of the company.

The private group of about 30 homeowners on Greenwood Lake that took on the weed problem went into action on Tuesday. Allied Biological of Hackettstown applied an herbicide to the lake that will kill the weeds in those particular sections.

“We did the Lakeside Community Club, then dropped down to Moosehead Marina, several houses on Lakeside, 11 houses on Old Lakeside/Rockey Point Cove, 12 houses on Rockey Point Road to Belchers Creek,” said Paul Zarrillo, a longtime lakefront owner, member of the Greenwood Lake Commission and organizer of the project.

They continued on, applying “Reward” to the water at the Greenwood Lake Beach Association property and several nearby homes. It was applied at two swim clubs, two marinas and 50 homes.

“I’m very satisfied with the participation,” said Zarrillo. “Everyone is very excited about it.”

The project came about because Zarrillo and several of his neighbors had enough of the weeds in the lake. They complained to each other enough that they decided to take matters into their own hands. Some said they weren’t able to even use the lake that sits outside their door because the weeds were so bad. They went door-to-door in lakeside neighborhoods and got many to sign on. The cost was about $250 per acre for the herbicide Reward to be applied.

The township participates in a weed harvesting program with the bi-state Greenwood Lake Commission. Zarrillo said that’s like cutting grass - they grow back with a vengeance. This herbicide treatment should kill the weeds for a year.

Zarrillo is hoping Passaic County will pick up the tab and treat the entire Jersey end of the lake next year.

“For the amount of taxes we all pay and what we give the county, they should certainly pick up the bill to help keep the lake a viable recreational destination,” Zarrillo said.

He'd like to see the township of West Milford chip in too - maybe a flat rate of $150 to $200 per lakefront home from the taxes they pay.

Greenwood Lake isn’t just a recreational destination; it supplies drinking water to over three million residents and thousands of businesses.

What do you think about the residents applying the herbicide to the lake? Go to westmilfordmessenger.com and share your thoughts.

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