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Agreement Could Keep Chabad House Open

By Jeff Cohen

March 15, 2011

A dispute may be nearing a close in the fight over whether an orthodox Jewish center for University of Hartford Students can stay open.

Earlier this year, we told the story on NPR of the case of a house owned by a group called Chabad Chevra on Bloomfield Avenue in Hartford. The Jewish organization planned to use that house as a place for students to worship and study.

But neighbors objected, saying they didnít want to live next to a raucous student center ó Jewish or otherwise.In 2009, the city issued a cease and desist order saying, among other things, that a religious use of that sort, at that site, was not permitted. And despite the fact that the Jewish organization bought the sprawling brick house from a Christian religious organization, the cityís zoning board appeals eventually upheld the decision.

The case wound up in state and federal court. Tonight, the cityís zoning board of appeals is set to vote on an agreement between the city and the religious group. If itís approved and then signed off on by a state court judge, the Chabad house will be allowed to stay open ó with various caveats.

But the effect of the agreement would be to overturn the cityís actions and allow the Jewish organization to operate largely as it had intended.

Attorneys for both parties declined to comment.

The board is set to meet tonight at 7:30.

Reprinted with permission of Jeff Cohen, author of the blog Capital Region Report. To view other stories on this topic, search Capital Region Report at http://capitalregionreport.wordpress.com/.
| Last update: September 25, 2012 |
     
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