Kikar Hashabbat reports that a major referendum will be held tomorrow in Monroe, Monroe Township. The city is home to the largest concentration of Satmar hasidim in New York, with thousands of residents voting on whether to approve a split into two separate cities - Monroe and New Palm City
,If the split is approved, New Palm City, also called Palm Tree Town, or "Tamar Teitelbaum", will include the Satmar-populated Kiryas Yoel plus 3,200 dunams of Monroe.
The Satmar Rebbe and community heads have been asking for some time to initiate a move that will make Kiryas Yoel, which is now a central part of Monroe, into a separate city with full and separate municipal control. Kiryat, or Kiryas in the European Ashkenazi pronunciation, means a city.
Up until now, the heads of the haredi community in Kiryas Yoel have been granted authority mainly in the granting of building permits, sanitary and municipal services and similar issues.If Kiryas Yoel becomes a separate city, all municipal services will be controlled by the community - including policing and firefighting services.
According to activists, approval of the split will allow construction of thousands of new apartments and may also bring calm to the non-Jewish neighbors, who are currently opposed to the expansion of Kiryas Yoel.
While the followers of the older brother, the Head of the Satmar rabbinical council, support the split, the followers of the younger brother, the Satmar Rebbe, a relative minority in the city, are opposed to splitting and are expected to vote against its approval.