This proposed 16,350 square foot house of worship would require
65% more land than owned to meet the legal requirements.
The structure would be too big, too high, too wide, too close to neighbors,
and without a major variance, would not be legal.

Contributions can be made to:
Connell Foley LLP
Attorney Trust Account
Please mail check to:
Connell Foley LLP
85 Livingston Avenue
Roseland NJ 07068,
Attn: Kevin J. Coakley
(Funds only distributed with consent of the Association's trustees)

Calendar of Events

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After the public speaks on February 13th,

the Zoning Board of Adjustment votes on

whether to approve or turn down The Chai Center application

to overcome substantial variances.


This case has been going on for 24 months costing residents and officials both a great deal of time and money.

 

The Concerned Neighborhood Association of Millburn Township is vehemently opposed to the Board granting substantial variances requested by the applicant. If the Zoning Board were not to agree, and grant these variances, a terrible precedence would be set for future development in our town.

 

But, just for a second, concentrate on the main variance. In 2005 when Rabbi Mendel Bogomilsky and his group purchased the property at the corner of Jefferson Avenue and Old Hills Road they knew that the zoning law required 3 areas.

 

A house of worship or other organization of “beneficial use” is allowed in a residential area but the code clearly calls for 3 acres to allow for buffering and parking and other items.

 

When Rabbi Rabbi Bogomilsky purchased an existing house (it is historical but not protected), he knew the code but still purchased a property which was only about 1 acre. This was not just to be a house of worship but a whole cultural center, The Chai Center for Living Judaism.

 

During the hearings, the Rabbi repeatedly states how few 3 acre lots are available now but he never gave testimony as to what was available back in 2005 when he deliberately  purchased a vastly undersized property. It is true, that over time, he was able to gain control (not ownership) of the property next door but in total he still only has 1.85 acres out of the 3 acres required by Millburn zoning.

 

The law is quite clear that in order to gain the multiple variances needed to tear down the two homes and build a massive 16,350 square foot building the applicant must show that they can and will mitigate all the damages like traffic, noise, buffering to neighbors,

parking on narrow side streets, etc.

 

We do not believe they proved their case and in fact believe that the expert witnesses called by our opposing group showed the negatives are too many to allow approval.

 

The Rabbi’s credibility has also been called into question. In 2001 he applied to the Zoning Board for relief from multiple variances for the property he owned and lived in located across from Millburn High School at 437 Millburn Avenue. Here, the property was even smaller or .84 percent of an acre. Needless to say after hearings with witnesses from both sides the application was turned down. The Board found that some of the testimony of the applicant’s witnesses was flawed and that the applicant had not met its burden of mitigating negatives factors like buffering, parking and traffic because of such a vastly undersized property for all of the programs planned for it. The Board concluded that that to approve the application would cause detrimental impact to the public good.

 

Bottom line: their 2001 application was turned down then and now, for many of the same reasons, it should be turned down once again.

 

But we can’t reply on past history. That’s why it is important that, as a show of force and our determination we oppose these substantial variances. Just coming to the final meeting will help but if you decide to make statement that should help reinforce the issue.

 

Come to the final meeting and support this cause. You will influence the Zoning Board who reflects the residents interests.

 

 

SAVE MILLBURN is the name for the local, registered, non-profit group,

The Concerned Neighborhood Association of Millburn Township, Inc. 2012

www.SaveMillburn.com or write: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

Save Millburn is the name for the local, registered, non-profit group,
The Concerned Neighborhood Association of Millburn Township, Inc. - Email Help@SaveMillburn.com