(JTA) — The Chasidic community of Kiryas Joel in New York has become what is said to be the first official haredi Orthodox town in the United States.
Kiryas Joel, a village of over 20,000 Yiddish-speaking Jews, became the town of Palm Tree on Jan. 1 when it officially split from the Town of Monroe located in upstate Orange County, the Times Herald-Record recently reported.
Monroe and Kiryas Joel, which is associated with the Satmar Chasidic sect, have been at odds over the years. In November 2017, over 80 percent of Monroe voters backed a measure to make Kiryas Joel the state’s first new town in 35 years.
Palm Tree is an English translation of the Satmar rebbe’s surname, Teitelbaum.
Kiryas Joel’s roots date back to the mid-1970s, when Chasidic Jews began settling in the area under the guidance of Satmar Rabbi Joel Teitelbaum.
The new town is made up of the 164 acres that Kiryas Joel had annexed from Monroe and 56 additional acres.