‘Significant anti-Semitic hostility’ blamed for Jackson housing project denial, lawsuit says

JACKSON – The developer who proposed building 459 units of housing on South Hope Chapel Road has sued the township and its Planning Board, claiming the plan was rejected because of a “rising tide of anti-Semitism in the township.”

“The board denied the application, bowing to severe anti-Semitic pressure from local residents and fears that Orthodox Jews may purchase homes and reside in the development,” the lawsuit states, “and due to the inclusion in the development of a house of worship that may be used as a synagogue by Orthodox Jews.”

Gregory P. McGuckin, who served as Planning Board attorney when the Jackson Trails application was discussed, said Tuesday he had not yet seen the lawsuit.

“I haven’t seen it yet, so it would be inappropriate for me to comment,” McGuckin said.

Jackson officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

The 97-pageĀ federal lawsuit was filed Monday on behalf of Jackson Trails LLC, the company that proposed the housing development. The developer’s application was initially rejected in October, when the Planning Board deadlocked, 4 to 4, on a vote to approve it.