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Latest on YeshivaMe-Roosevelt.pdf <<click link 2-4-2011
Roosevelt shul must downsize
New Jersey Superior Court Judge Lawrence Lawson, sitting in Freehold Nov. 17, ruled that Yeshiva Me'on Hatorah could continue operating in the Homestead Lane synagogue with 31 students until June 28, 2010, pending an appeal of a decision he made earlier this year that the school must file a variance application to continue operating in the synagogue. After June, the yeshiva must reduce its student population to no more than 12 students, Lawson said.
The judge ordered the yeshiva to file its appeal by Nov. 20 or the stay would be vacated. If the stay is vacated, the yeshiva would have 20 days to file a variance application. If the yeshiva does not file the application, then the borough could enforce its ordinance and close the yeshiva because it would be operating illegally. Whether or not the yeshiva filed an appeal could not be determined before the Examiner's deadline Nov. 20.
The yeshiva's Rabbi Yisroel Eisenberg had to appear before Lawson Nov. 17 because the Roosevelt Preservation Association's attorney Ronald Gasiorowski, and Roosevelt's special counsel Howard Cohen and Planning Board attorney Michele Donato had taken issue with the student population reported to the court. Eisenberg presented the names, addresses and other information for 31 students.
The defendants asked Lawson to immediately return the student population to 12, the number of students the yeshiva had when the borough first inspected the school in 2005. Lawson decided to allow the 31 students to remain until the last day of this school year, as long as the yeshiva files a variance application or an appeal.
The yeshiva's attorney Bruce Shoulson told the court that the yeshiva paid $250 and filed an application for a D variance with the borough on Oct. 20. He said the application asked for variance to continue the yeshiva's use of the synagogue not as a separate and distinct use. Donato said the site plan submitted with the application does not show any changes to the synagogue or property, despite the intensification in use."
They are not addressing any D variance requests," she said. "They don't have an application that the board can hear." Donato also noted that if the yeshiva appeals Lawson's decision, the borough's Planning and Zoning boards could not process the application.
Lawson said during the processing of a variance application or appeal, the yeshiva must have no more than 12 students after June. "The number is not changing from 12 unless some reviewing tribunal says so," he said.
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