New Jersey Camps Government Affairs Program (NJC GAP)

The Government Affairs Advocacy Program of NJC GAP working in partnership with ACA NY/NJ has gained many critical accomplishments for our member camps.

Each year member camps identify priority issues impacting camp operations directing a clearly focused government advocacy program. Top issues currently targeted are:

  1. Amusement Regulations
  2. Minimum Wage and Hours Regulations
  3. Compliance with the Revised NJ Youth Camp Safety Act

Key Accomplishments

  • The NJ Department of Health and Senior Services adopted regulations that exempt ACA accredited camps from pre-operational and operational health inspections by local, county and state health officers as it relates to the enforcement of the NJ Youth Camp Safety Act.
  • The NJ Department of Community Affairs through its Carnival and Amusement Ride Safety Board has proposed regulations to exempt all youth camps from amusement regulation and inspection related to any rider or gravity propelled ride, including but not limited to, playground equipment, soft play equipment, water slides under 15 feet or water based recreation equipment.
  • At the invitation of the NJ Department of Health and Senior Services our member camps are participating on a working group for the re-adoption of the NJ Public and Recreational Bathing regulations. The new regulations which have had significant camp industry input will be proposed in 2011.
  • ACA accredited camps in New Jersey are now exempt from NJ State Amusement Regulations related to the permitting, fees and inspection of manmade or natural rock walls and other challenge activities identified in the Adventure/Challenge section of the ACA Accreditation Standards.
  • Twenty-one member camps have hosted state legislators for visits to their camp through our Summer Visit Program. Legislators have the opportunity to learn about the camp industry, ACA accreditation, and the impact camps located in their legislative district have on the constituents and communities they represent.
  • Legislation exempting all camps from overtime regulations is being drafted for introduction in the New Jersey State Senate and General Assembly in 2011.

Ongoing Government Affairs Initiatives

Beating Back Red Tape

  • NJC-GAP’s lobbyist provides guidance and direction for member camps in New Jersey helping them navigate the various state regulations impacting youth camps in New Jersey and putting them in touch with the right people in Trenton.
  • Constant Legislative and Regulatory Monitoring
  • Our lobbyist monitors state legislation and regulations on a daily basis, ensuring early warning and immediately response on issues that could favorably or negatively impact camp operations in New Jersey.
  • Getting Front and Center with Key Policymakers
  • We continue to improve awareness of the Camp industry in Trenton.
  • NJC-GAP is testifying at legislative hearings on priority issues, introducing state legislators to member camps through site visits, and educating state regulators on how their policies impact camps in New Jersey.
  • Through our Key Contacts Program we have been able to match member camps to their state representatives in Trenton in order to initiate introductions and help members establish relationships with policy makers to assist the goals of our Government Affairs Advocacy Program.