New Jackson Township Ordinance To Ease Zoning for Shuls

By Hamodia Staff

Rabbi Avi Schnall with Jackson Mayor Mike Reina, (Agudath Israel)

The Jackson Township Council voted on an ordinance which lowers the amount of land required for a house of worship from two acres to one acre in most areas of town, which should ease the burden of the recently established Jewish communities to build shuls to accommodate their growth.

At the council meeting on Wednesday, March 28, Rabbi Avi Schnall, director of Agudah’s New Jersey Office, addressed the council and described how seven years ago the council voted to make it virtually impossible to build schools, houses of worship and other religious infrastructure including an eruv in the township, which would make it exceedingly hard for Orthodox Jews to practice their religion. After saying that he had not seen the ordinance and cannot comment on it, he nonetheless said, “Tonight, an ordinance was passed to allow accommodation for houses of worship. There is a movement forward that change needs to happen, and changes happened.”

In a statement released by Agudath Israel, Rabbi Schnall, who has advocated for years on behalf of the rights of the thousands of families residing in Jackson Township, said, “This vote is a giant step forward for religious rights in Jackson, New Jersey. This will allow the growing Orthodox population in Jackson to freely exercise their religious rights.”

Jackson Mayor Mike Reina was instrumental in ensuring the ordinance being presented, and was thanked by Rabbi Schnall.

“Mayor Reina’s leadership over the last few months is what enabled us to reach this this point,” Rabbi Schnall said. “The mayor has been the driver behind this ordinance and we look forward to working with him on similar issues in the years to come.”

Agudath Israel also extended its gratitude to Jackson Council President Martin Flemming, along with the rest of the councilmembers, for their votes and all their assistance on this particular issue leading up to this point.

The final passage of this ordinance is expected to take place in the next few weeks.

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