Thursday, December 03, 2020

DOJ Sues New York Village Over Discriminatory Zoning Aimed At Orthodox Jews

The Department of Justice announced yesterday that it has filed a RLUIPA lawsuit against the Village of Airmont, New York alleging that it has used its zoning code to discriminate against the Orthodox Jewish community.  The complaint (full text) in United States v. Village of Airmont, (SD NY, filed 12/2/2020), alleges that since the expiration of a prior consent decree, the Village has adopted a new zoning code, and has applied it in a discriminatory manner, that prevents Orthodox Jews from gaining zoning approval for home synagogues and a school. It has also enforced regulations in a manner that prevents Jews from clearing trees on their property to erect sukkahs, and prevents the installation of mikvahs. First Liberty Institute issued a press release with additional background. [Thanks to Steven H. Sholk for the lead.]