Jackson, NJ – Nearly two months to the day after its township council closed a loophole that could have completely banned any eruvim within its borders, the Jackson township council has reversed its position in order to avoid a costly legal battle.
The Asbury Park Press (http://on.app.com/2koOkXS) reported that the township council is expected to ratify a settlement with Agudath Israel of America at a meeting that will be held Wednesday at 7:30 PM at the Jackson Town Hall.
But Rabbi Avi Schnall, director of Agudath Israel of America’s New Jersey office, said that the term “settlement” was incorrect and that the township had actually agreed to pass a resolution that would allow eruvim on all utility poles in Jackson.
That resolution is part of an ongoing mediation process in a lawsuit filed by the Agudah against Jackson last spring for refusing to allow dormitories and schools within its borders. That lawsuit was amended in October with an additional claim that said banning an eruv violated the constitutional rights of the township’s Orthodox Jewish residents.
“We commend Jackson township for deciding to introduce this resolution as a show of good faith,” Rabbi Schnall told VIN News. “While we haven’t settled the lawsuit, we acknowledge this as a positive step and are hopeful as we continue mediation.”
As previously reported on VIN News (http://bit.ly/2kqzb8i), members of Jackson’s eruv committee had contacted the municipality about finding ways to construct an eruv legally within the township’s borders, hoping to work hand in hand with local government. Several weeks later the township began cracking down on a rarely enforced ordinance on placing any items within the public right of way, which included an eruv.