Congregants at odds with Village of Hewlett Neck over backyard prayer tent for Rosh Hashanah
The Village of Hewlett Neck has issued a stop work order for a large backyard tent that was put up for the purpose of prayer gathering for Rosh Hashanah.
Congregants say they secured a tent permit with Nassau County but that was circumvented by the village.
"The rabbi lives here at this house, and we come to pray with him - and last time we checked, it is our constitutional right to gather and to practice our religion," says Israel Abecassis.
Members of the congregation say they are still going to gather for prayer service at sundown despite the stop work order.
"We are going to gather here just the way it is," says Abecassis.
Village of Hewlett Neck issued a statement saying in part, "Village code requires that structures to be used for certain purposes, including religious purposes, must first receive site plan approval and a special permit from the Board of Trustees."
Village officials also say that once they receive a properly completed application a public hearing will be scheduled.