Friday, February 03, 2023

Chabad's Long-Running Suit Over Land Use Dismissed In Part

In Lubavitch of Old Westbury, Inc. v. Incorporated Village of Old Westbury, New York, (ED NY, Jan. 31, 2023), a New York federal magistrate judge recommended that the district court dismiss on various procedural and jurisdictional grounds (including statute of limitations) a number of the claims in a long-running suit by an Orthodox Jewish Chabad organization that has been unable to obtain permission to use some seven acres of property for religious education, worship and related activities. The magistrate judge began his lengthy Report and Recommendation as follows:

Presently before the Court is a motion to partially dismiss this action, which has been pending for more than fourteen years and involves factual allegations going back to 1994. In the years since the initial complaint was filed on December 17, 2008, this case has been assigned (and then reassigned) to four District Judges ... and four Magistrate Judges.... Furthermore, numerous law firms and attorneys have come and gone on behalf of the parties over this lengthy time span. As a reminder to the parties, they have an affirmative obligation under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure ("Rule") 1 "to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action and proceeding."...

A 237-page Second Amended Complaint in the case asserted 17 causes of action under the 1st, 4th, 5th and 14th Amendments, RLUIPA and the state Constitution.