Tuesday, November 17, 2015
The borough of Outremont wants to stop the creation of new places of worship.
Borough councillors voted in favour of a new bylaw at a special meeting Monday to alter the zoning for the commercial district around Bernard Ave. and Laurier Ave.
Borough Mayor Marie Cinq-Mars said the motion was proposed because businesses in the region are struggling.
"I'm not sure the cohabitation between the places of worship and different shops is the best thing to do. So we're going forward with that," said Cinq-Mars.
Hasidic activist Mayer Feig said the zoning change would hurt the area's large jewish community.
"So these few little pockets where there is space available, we don't think , we actually feel it's discriminatory toward our community," said Feig.
Current synagogues, churches, and mosques won't be affected by the bylaw.
Controversial blogger Pierre Lacerte has been at the heart of many run-ins involving Hasidic Jews in Outremont.
He believes many residents will support the change.
I think so. I can't talk for other people. I know the opponents will be numerous. That's fair enough," said Lacerte.
Mindy Polak, the only Hasidic Jew elected as a city councillor, was the only person to vote against the bylaw.
"There are a lot of questions in this file that are not being answered," she said.
The bylaw has many steps to go through before being implemented.
The next phase is a public consultation with residents, which will happen on Dec. 1.
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