Lake Shawnee ZIP Code Change Request

For: Lake Shawnee ZIP Code Change Request Fund
Jefferson, NJ
Organizer: Gene Spaeth
Lake Shawnee ZIP Code Change Request (Lake Shawnee ZIP Code Change Request Fund)
of $800 goal
51% Complete
Raised by 11 donors

The Story

This fundraiser is related to the request to change the ZIP code serving the Lake Shawnee Reservation from Wharton, NJ 07885 to Lake Hopatcong, NJ 07849.  Funds collected will pay for advertising to inform those affected using targeted post cards, lawn signs, Facebook advertising, Jefferson AIM ads, and more.  This outreach will help inform and educate those affected.  Additionally, we may need to secure funding for an official survey and an attorney.

The Lake Shawnee Reservation is a section within Jefferson Township, NJ containing approximately 550 households.  Jefferson Township is served by several post offices: Newfoundland (07435), Oak Ridge (07438), Lake Hopatcong (07849), and Wharton (07885).  The Lake Shawnee Reservation is currently served by the Wharton, NJ 07885 post office.

Lake Hopatcong, NJ  07849 has a post office 2.5 miles away from The Lake Shawnee Reservation by vehicle, whereas the Wharton, NJ  07885 post office is 5.2 miles away by vehicle.  Additionally, The Lake Shawnee Reservation has two entrances and one exit by vehicle.  The homes surrounding the methods of egress and ingress are served by the Lake Hopatcong, NJ  07849 post office, making such a change presumably more efficient for the US Postal Service.  To the east of Lake Shawnee is protected land that is part of the North Jersey Highlands.

Furthermore, Lake Hopatcong, NJ 07849 is not a municipality, but is generally known to be the municipality of Jefferson Township, NJ.  Wharton, NJ 07885 is both a mailing address and municipality.  The association of Wharton, NJ to The Lake Shawnee Reservation in Jefferson Township has numerous implications.

This ZIP code change request is being made for the above reasons, in addition to several of the reasons identified in the CRS Report for Congress, including but not limited to:

  • Lack of Proper Community Identity
  • Property Value Association
  • Problems with Navigation/Directions
  • Confusion in Voter Registration and Congressional District
  • Misdirected Property Tax Remittances and Municipal Service Accuracy

Lastly, the compromise of changing the city name on the last line of the address is not a suitable solution as it does not adequately address the primary concerns outlined above.  Additionally, nearly all computer systems that have ZIP code data associate ZIP code 07885 with Wharton, NJ and do not have a second association to Jefferson Township or the Lake Shawnee Reservation.

For more information, please visit:

Please note that any unused funds will be returned proportionately to all those who contributed to the cause.

* Alternate Fundraising Link: *

* This fundraiser is not affiliated with, maintained, authorized, endorsed, or sponsored by the Lake Shawnee Club. The term Lake Shawnee is a geographic reference. The term Lake Shawnee Reservation refers to the master deed for residents of the lake community. *

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on January 4, 2017

Posted on January 4, 2017

BUDGET AS OF 12/31/2016

Donations $415.00
Service Fees (Credit Card, WePay, Etc.) -$12.32

Signage $71.65
Jefferson AIM Ads - 6/10/16, 6/17/16 $109.00
Facebook Click Ads - 50 Clicks, 1600 Screen Impressions $50.00
Google - Domain Name Registration - 1 Year $12.00
VistaPrint - 250 Post Cards to Residents (45%), June 2016 $126.85
VistaPrint - 250 Post Cards to Residents (45%), July 2016 $127.52
Misc. Office Supplies $20.00
USPS Certified Mailings, Regular Mailings $15.06


Posted on December 23, 2016

Posted on December 23, 2016

An appeal has been mailed via certified mail and regular mail to the appropriate parties. The foundation of the appeal relates to the survey methodology used for rural mail delivery. The appeal highlights weaknesses in the process and aims to improve the procedure for not only our ZIP Code boundary change request, but others, to ensure a highly accurate vote.

Posted on December 23, 2016

Posted on December 23, 2016

The USPS survey results are in:

514 surveys mailed by USPS
299 returned
132 YES (Thank you!), 44%
166 No, 55%
1 No Preference

Based on the survey results, the US Postal Service will be unable to move forward with the requested change. I am pleased that more than 50% were returned, and pleased with our effort.

From the beginning of this endeavor around Memorial Day Weekend earlier this year, we had a strong campaign. I am optimistic that with more time and outreach, we can turn the votes on this matter. It would have only taken 17 No voters to flip to a Yes, and we would have succeeded.

We can submit another survey request in 10 years. A lot can happen in ten years with the current population and demographic, as well as continued knowledge and outreach about this issue.

Everyone: Please use your network and knowledge on the matter to discuss this when appropriate over the next 10 years.  It simply makes sense to update the ZIP code, so, while this is a setback for now, and possibly 10 years, it is not over.

For now, I will appeal as there may be irregularities in the survey methodology.

About the Organizer

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