NJ town pays $10,000, gives up fight over Jewish boundary
MAHWAH — A settlement between Mahwah and an Orthodox Jewish group will cost the municipality $10,000 and allow the religious group to erect a eruv, or religious boundary, in the town.
The Bergen Rockland Eruv Association accepted the terms of the agreement on Wednesday after the Township Council voted 5-2 on Tuesday night to approve the terms, according to the Bergen Record.
The settlement ends a chapter in the Bergen County community's history that saw the reversal of ordinances that banned eruvs from being put up and restricted parks and playgrounds to local residents. The state Attorney General's Office also sued the municipality over the ordinances.
According to a copy of the settlement posted by NorthJersey.com, the agreement includes:
- $10,000 payment from the township to the Association for a portion of their legal fees
- Existing eruv can stay up and may be expanded
- The association will recolor or replace the covering of the eruv to match the utility pole
- The association will maintain the eruv without funding from the township
Faced with the threat of state lawsuits, settlements are being negotiated with Upper Saddle River and Montvale.
Jackson gave up its legal fight in December when its Township Council voted to allow eruvs to be erected in town.
It isn't just Jewish groups that have run into resistance in the state.
Also this week, Muslims in Bayonne settled a lawsuit for $400,000 after the Zoning Board blocked plans for a mosque. The settlement will allow the plans to proceed.