Sullivan County Ends Fight To Block Hasidic Votes
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
The Board of Elections blocked the votes of 27 hasidim on the grounds they weren’t really residents of Bloomingburg.
More than two dozen hasidim filed a state lawsuit to counter that along with a another lawsuit in federal court claiming religious discrimination.
On January 8, the Board of Elections and the hasidim involved in the lawsuits settled the state lawsuit out of court. The board dropped its disqualifications of those hasidic voters, while the hasidim dropped the state lawsuit. The board also agreed to list the names of the hasidim on the county’s voter roll.
“We are pleased that on the eve of our court appearance, Sullivan County has admitted that the Board of Elections wrongfully canceled the votes of dozens of Bloomingburg’s Hasidic Jewish voters,” the Bloomingburg Jewish Community Council reportedly said in a statement.
The federal lawsuit filed by the hasidim is still active.
Many locals allege Modern Orthodox developer Shalom Lamm and his company used deception and bribery to trick Bloomingburg into approving what it thought was going to be a low-density golf course retirement and vacation community.
Instead, it got a 396-unit high-density hasidic development without a golf course.
Bloomingburg had only 420 residents – none of them known to be Orthodox Jews – as of the 2010 Census.
Lamm’s development will bring as many as 2,000 hasidim into Bloomingburg – a bucolic village in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains – as full time residents of the development and other Lamm-owned local property.
Satmar promoted Lamm’s development in the Yiddish press as a new Satmar shtel (village).