“[Town boards members] are quitting on us in droves. We have pretty much lost half of our boards over the last year — the planning board, town board, zoning board and ethics board — and we are having trouble filling those seats because of the constant threat of personal lawsuits."
Modern Orthodox developer Shalom Lamm's penchant for suing anyone who crosses him has put a damper on the Town of Mamakating, New York and the adjacent Village of Bloomingburg, where Lamm rammed a 396-unit high density townhouse development earmarked for hasidic Jews through the approvals process – often using deception and, some claim, outright lies to do so.
“[Town boards members] are quitting on us in droves. We have pretty much lost half of our boards over the last year — the planning board, town board, zoning board and ethics board — and we are having trouble filling those seats because of the constant threat of personal lawsuits,” William Herrmann, Mamakating’s town supervisor, told the Jewish Week.
Mamakating is currently being sued by Lamm in federal court for alleged religious discrimination against him and the hasidic community, even though many of Lamm's harshest opponents are themselves Jews.
Mamakating responded by suing Lamm in return, and Hermann says he looks forward to the town having its day in court.
But the Jewish Week makes a claim in its report that is false:
Lamm, a Modern Orthodox Jew who is the son of Rabbi Norman Lamm, a former chancellor of Yeshiva University, insisted that his project was always 396 units and challenged opponents to produce one document saying otherwise. They have not.
Much of the material in the Jewish Week's report was first reported by others – mostly by FailedMessiah.com – and that includes the document the Jewish Week claims has not been produced. But as you can see here, that document exists and it was most certainly produced.
The Jewish Week report also contains this truly moronic paragraph:
[Holly Roche, who is Jewish and leader of the largest community group opposed to Lamm's development, the Rural Community Coalition] said a 65-man team from the FBI’s public corruption squad descended on Bloomingburg last year and raided Lamm’s offices. Lamm confirmed the probe, but nothing has come of it so far.
The raid was on Lamm's office and on many of his properties in the tiny 420-person village. It was widely reported in the media at the time, including by FailedMessiah.com. So it isn't that Roche asserted something that Lamm confirmed. The raid is a known and widely reported fact, and photos of it were widely published, as well.
The idea that "nothing has come of it so far" is both true and false. True because, so far, there are no indictments we know about. False because the FBI and other federal law enforcement agencies frequently take a very long time to file indictments and make arrests in complex cases, and this is a complex case - not so much because of the complexity of the alleged crimes, but because of language barriers and church and state issues.
The Jewish Week also mentions the 16-page all Yiddish advertising supplement distributed with the Satmar Zalman faction's Der Yid newspaper. That supplement (and the front page of that issue of Der Yid itself, which Beharedi Haredim first reported and which the Jewish Week fails to make clear) called Lamm's development a new Satmar hasidic "shtetl' named Kiryas Yated Lev – a story FailedMessiah.com broke. The Jewish Week,which whines when anyone does the same to them, failed to cite FailedMessiah.com for that or for any of our other reporting.
At any rate, you can read dozens of FailedMessiah.com posts on Bloomingburg, Lamm and the new Satmar hasidic "shtetl" he's building there here.