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Rec Department to Oversee Edmunds House

The Rec Department will schedule use of the building, which was eyed by the Kiwanis, Police Explorers and Pathways.

Use of the Edmunds Little House on Passaic Valley Road will be administered by the Montville Township Recreation Department under a plan approved by the on Tuesday.

Three groups other than the Recreation Department—Montville Police Explorers, Montville Kiwanis Food Pantry and Pathways for Exceptional Children—expressed interested in using the two-room house for offices or storage. Those groups could coordinate with the recreation department to use the building.

The house is owned by Montville Township and located on the same property as Edmunds Barn, which is used for wrestling activities. The Board of Education previously used the building as an office for its Department of Special Services.

The township in August sent letters and questionnaires to 21 organizations and civic groups in town to see if they were interested in the house. The Recreation Department and the three other groups responded.

Interim township administrator Adam Brewer recommended having the Recreation Department administer the use of the building, as it does with the Edmunds Activities Barn, Amphitheatre, Camp Dawson and other facilities, and giving priority to the three organizations that expressed interest in using the space.

Montville Police Explorers said they wanted to use the facility for post meetings, training and equipment, and would prefer to have it to themselves because they need to store police-related training equipment. They said they would be willing to pay to renovate the house and for operational expenses.

"This location was promised to Explorers several years ago," Patrolman Frank Cooney, the director of the Explorers, wrote in his response. "We are a group that has grown in numbers. We are committed to assisting the community and need a place to house our organization."

In August, the township saying the land could be used for recreational purposes only and it wasn't sure the Explorers post qualified.

Pathways for Exceptional Children said it is interested in using the facility for offices and training purposes. Montville Kiwanis said it is interested in using the space for its food pantry as it expands.

"We are currently housed at the which is quite satisfactory at this time. Our concern is that if we need to expand—and we are experiencing growth—then we will outgrow space at UMC," pantry chairman Joe O'Dowd said.

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