Ali RosenSep 7, 2017, 10:46 pmSep 8, 2017, 7:51 am

Residents speak out on proposal for Kiryas Joel to annex section of Monroe

Residents will have a chance to make a final decision at a referendum in November

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Residents in Orange County voiced their opinions to County Legislators about a potentila portion on Monroe being annexed into the Hasidic village of Kiryas Joel on Thursday night.

The new portion would be turned into a town known as "Palm Tree".

Residents in favor of the annexation said that they worried that, without it, their school district will suffer similar to the way they've seen neighboring communities suffer. But residents against it fear that their taxes will increase if they lose Kiryas Joel.

"I don't believe that separation is a good idea at this time until we get all the information, environmentally, financially, water, sewer, and all the communities need to be represented," Christine Tucker said.

Officials from Kiryas Joel and United Monroe, a grassroots organization in favor of the separation, came to an agreement. If the ultimate decision is to separate, then Kiryas Joel will receive an additional 56 acres of Monroe land to build the town of Palm Tree and they would have to refuse any annexation requests from property owners in Monroe or Blooming Grove for the first 10 years.

Residents of Blooming Grove, however say they're unhappy with the deal, as they do not get to vote on it, despite being part of it.

At the end of the meeting, the county legislature voted 18-3 in favor of a referendum. In November, residents in Monroe will have the chance to decide if they want to separate from Kiryas Joel.

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