NJSIAA clashes with lawmakers over HS sport bills

Posted: Updated:

The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association is at odds with state lawmakers over a pair of bills that would allow two different high schools to merge their sports teams.

The bills stem from a situation with West Windsor-Plainsboro High School North. They didn’t have enough players for their football team and wanted to cooperate with High School South. But this was originally only allowed for smaller schools, so the schools were not allowed to merge.

The NJSIAA voted to change that rule after the season, with some limits, and it seemingly addressed the issue.

But the bills are going ahead in the state Legislature anyway, and the association is trying to stop that.

“We’ve not even had one single conversation with the sponsors of the bills or any of the legislators,” says NJSIAA assistant director Kim Degraw-Cole. “We’re the ones reaching out, saying, ‘Talk with us. Let’s sit down, slow this down. Are there things that we can be doing?’ But those conversations have not happened.”

Degraw-Cole says that the bills would lead to less students getting to play sports and could even lead to the creation of “all-star teams.”

Veteran MyCentralJersey.com reporter Jerry Carino writes, “By throwing the merger door wide open to anyone with declining turnout, politicians would be greasing the skids for abuse.”

Democratic Sen. Linda Greenstein and Assemblyman Dan Benson are the sponsors of the bill. They were not available for comment.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."