Monroe, NY - KJ: Anti-Annexation Lawsuit Motivated By Greed And Anti-Semitism
Monroe, NY - Kiryas Joel officials slammed the Orange County legislature for its decision yesterday to approve up to $200,000 in funding in order to pursue legal action to overturn the proposed Kiryas Joel annexation.
As previously reported on VIN News, Orange County will be partnering with local municipalities in the proposed lawsuit, with an overwhelming majority of county legislators voting in favor of authorizing funding for the litigation. Only two of the county’s 21 legislators did not vote in favor of the proposed funding, with one missing the vote due to a family emergency, and the other, who represents Kiryas Joel, voting against providing funding for the proposed lawsuit.
A statement today released by Kiryas Joel called the lawsuit “an irresponsible waste of tax payer money.”
Ari Felberman, Kiryas Joel’s government relations coordinator, said that the lawsuit was motivated by both greed and anti-Semitism.
“We feel that the County is pursuing this political witch-hunt to satisfy a faction in Monroe that has stoked the flames of hate to bolster their clout and their coffers,” said Felberman.
Despite the near unanimous vote by legislators, Felberman questioned whether the lawsuit was reflective of the wishes of county residents.
“There are over 372,000 people in Orange County, and it seems plausible that most of them would rather see that money spent on education, infrastructure or other quality of life benefits rather than to pursue a hollow, meritless lawsuit,” observed Felberman.
Felberman accused the county of overstepping its bounds in its announced intention to pursue legal action against an annexation that has been legally approved.
“ The county appears willing to waste this money to fight to override the decision made by two democratically elected boards that followed the state-prescribed process like any other annexation that occurs around the state,” said Felberman. “In fact, the county is once again acting outside of its authority in seeking to intrude on a purely local municipal matter in direct contravention of the New York State constitution and state law, an effort previously blocked by Governor Cuomo and the Commissioner of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.”
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