- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 12, 2016

MONROE, N.Y. (AP) - A state Supreme Court justice has rejected two legal challenges to a Hasidic Jewish village’s expansion in the Hudson Valley.

In a decision signed Tuesday, Justice Gretchen Walsh of Westchester County found no grounds to invalidate Kiryas Joel’s annexation of 164 acres from the town of Monroe or an environmental review the village conducted.

The legal challenges were made by Orange County, eight municipalities and the nonprofit Preserve Hudson Valley. Emily Convers, head of a local citizens’ group, tells the Middletown Times Herald-Record (https://bit.ly/2e9V20b ) that Preserve Hudson Valley will decide shortly whether to appeal the “irresponsible decision.”

Kiryas Joel leaders were unavailable to comment on Wednesday because of the Jewish holiday Yom Kippur.

Opponents of the annexation fear increased congestion in the suburban area about 50 miles north of New York City.

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