West Elmira zoning board rejects monastery application

WEST ELMIRA, N.Y. (18 NEWS) - West Elmira residents applauded after the zoning board rejected the ongoing application for the monastery.

"All are in motion to deny the variance," one board member said, after the other members voted "aye" to reject. 

The applicants were the Bronx Jewish Boys, a congregation from New York City that residents were weary of after a trail of violations and fines were discovered by residents.

"It is a good direction that we are headed in, it's baby steps," Cynthia Manning, a West Elmira resident said.

If the variance was approved and the monastery purchased, the congregation's plans were to turn the it into a Jewish place of study and worship.

"Our primary target will be the college campuses that have young men and women that are interested in pursing and furthering their Jewish studies," Rabbi Sroya Sorcher, the congregation's leader, said back in August.

Though most of the residents got the outcome they wanted, manning says residents should not claim victory just yet.

"We need to see what the Bronx Jewish Boys' next move is before we truly have a true celebration," Manning said.

Rabbi Sorcher declined to comment after the meeting. He and his organization do have the option to go to the state supreme court and appeal the decision. 

 


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