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Application for Yeshiva Dormitory Withdrawn at Freehold Borough Planning Board Meeting

The Yeshiva Dormitory applicant withdrew his application to turn the basement of 32 Broad Street into a dormitory for over 60 people. The property has already been approved to be used as Yeshiva.

The second part of the Freehold Borough Planning Board Yeshiva Dormitory public hearing came to an abrupt end Wednesday night after the applicant, David Rosenbaum, withdrew his application.

Rosenbaum’s attorney, Vincent Halleran Jr. had previously brought professionals in front of the board to show what the applicant’s plans were for the Yeshiva Dormitory. According to previous testimony, Rosenbaum had wanted to turn the basement of 32 Broad Street into a dormitory that would hold living spaces for 59 male students and the rabbi and his family. The first portion of the public hearing for the application lasted over two-and-a-half hours and was forced to continue on Feb. 13.

Borough residents crowded into the Freehold Borough boardroom for an opportunity to give their opinion on the proposed Yeshiva Dormitory at 32 Broad Street. However, as quickly as the meeting began, it ended.

“I have been authorized by Mr. Rosenbaum to announce to the board that Mr. Rosenbaum has decided to withdraw his application. I also consulted with the owner of the property and he agrees with that decision,” announced Halleran. “He has asked me to thank you all for your patience, he understands that you are all volunteers and are not getting paid, thank you for listening. He thought he had a good application, but basically Mr. Rosenbaum has come to the conclusion that if he is not wanted in the neighborhood, he does not want to move there.”

Following Halleran’s announcement, the boardroom erupted into applause and the Planning Board members unanimously agreed to accept the withdrawal of the application.

Edward F. Liston, the attorney hired by Broad Street residents, Maryanne Earle and Jean Holtz addressed the board after the withdrawal. He thanked the board for allowing the residents to put forward a case at the last meeting.

“The only thing I am sorry about is that we all did not receive a call prior to this meeting,” said Liston.

After another round of applause from the auidence, the board took a quick recess to allow residents to leave who did not want to hear the rest of the planning board meeting.

“I am not surprised at the withdrawal but I am happy,” said Holtz in-between hugs from fellow residents. “I am most happy though that we were able to come together as a community to say what is best for us. It is important that we try to keep folks informed. This is an important lesson in democracy and a lot of good came out of this experience.”

Before the adjournment of the meeting, residents were able to address the board with any remaining questions they had about the application.

Borough resident, Gary Corliss asked the board to clarify what the withdrawal of the application meant for the property.

“The only thing before the board was the application for the use variance. They have withdrawn the application for the dormitory but the school is still allowed to be there,” said Frank Accisano, Esq., the borough’s Planning Board Attorney.

Brian Sullivan February 14, 2013 at 01:09 PM
I am against any further additions of high density housing in Freehold Borough. This is certainly good news. Special thanks to Marianne Earle and Jean Holtz. They did far more than most people would have.
Marc LeVine February 14, 2013 at 04:19 PM
I agree with Mr. Sullivan. A Yeshiva is fine use of the property, but converting such a building's basement for dormitory living just doesn't seem appropriate for the community or as a proper living environment for school age young men.
Carol February 14, 2013 at 04:58 PM
I don't understand the need for a Yeshiva when there is a synagogue across the street.
Lisa February 14, 2013 at 07:32 PM
Carol, that's a good distinction that many non-Jewish folks don't understand. Maybe Marc LeVine or any other person of the Jewish faith can explain the distinction for us.
Marc LeVine February 15, 2013 at 12:19 PM
Hi Carol. There is no connection between the Conservative Freehold Jewish Center and Orthodox Yeshiva. Not all Christians pray in the same church and not all Jews worship the same way. Easy explanation. I hope this helps.
Carol February 15, 2013 at 04:18 PM
Thanks Marc, I was leaning more toward paying to use the classrooms and facilities, but like you explained, they're basically 2 different entities.
Richard Coronato February 20, 2013 at 05:23 PM
The last paragraph of the article I read in the News Transcript 2/20/2013 stated that "while borough officials were receptive to him [Rosenbaum] ..." By what authority do our elected officials make those kinds of overtures? Obviously, most Borough residents were not 'receptive'. And, to clarify ... don't sugar-coat this as 'high density housing.' This was housing 60 adult men in a basement, along with a family of four including two small children. How could any official or resident for that matter view this as an enhancement of our town?

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