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.