September 2, 2009 THE VILLADOM TIMES IV • Page 5 Mahwah Chai, single family uses equated by Frank J. McMahon A professional planner hired by Chai Lifeline, a Jewish not-for-profit organization that wants to provide respite for grief stricken families in a single family home on Ramapo Valley Road in Mahwah, claims this proposed use is no different than a typical single family use. The house, which overlooks the Ramapo River, is located on a 4.4-acre property that is accessed by a single private roadway. The property was given to Chai Lifeline as a gift in 2007, and the non-profit named the property the Pamela & Craig Goldman River Retreat after the previous owners. Chai Lifeline began bringing in single families who had lost children to a serious disease, or who have children who suffer from serious illnesses, to stay at the house for a few days at a time for grief counseling. The township’s former zoning officer determined last year, however, that the Chai Lifeline use did not meet the requirements of the township’s zoning ordinance for residential single family use. The non-profit has asked the zoning board for relief from that determination. At a recent board meeting, Matthew Jakubowski testified that the use of the home for a few days at a time by one family at a time meets the township’s zoning ordinance definition of single family use. He asserted that such a use would be less intense than a typical single family use because the Chai house would not be occupied every day. “People go back and forth in a typical single family situation,” Jakubowski said, “and the occupants of the River Reserve would be no different and the potential impact would be the same, if not less, because they would not occupy the house 365 days a year.” He added that, in a home occupation situation such as a law office, which is a permitted use in this zone, there would be people going back and forth in the same way that Chai Lifeline proposes. Explaining that he had reviewed the zoning ordinance, Jakubowski said, “Nothing (in it) restricts the time that a single family owner can use a single family house and so there is nothing that says the River Retreat can’t operate as proposed.” Jakubowski explained further that the Chai Lifeline occupants comply with the definitions of “household” and “family” because they are blood related and their (continued on page 17) We Now Carry Available in Mahwah store only ��� Dayna Tidwell of Mahwah, 6, recently competed in the Amateur Athletic Union National Karate Championship in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She earned a silver medal for Kata (form and movement sequencing), and a bronze medal for Kumite (sparring), winning second and third place nationally for the girls’ beginner division. In order to compete in this event, participants must first qualify in the the AAU state and regional tournaments. Mahwah’s medalist ���������������������������� Coupons not accepted for Ugg purchases ������ ���� ��������������� ����������������� ������������ ���� �������������� ���������� ������������������ ��������� ����������������� MAHWAH �������������������� ��������������������� ���������� Before deciding on a tree company, please give us a call. You have nothing to lose! Our estimates are free and honest. Tree Corporation 20 Years Experience Tree Services: • Removals & Pruning • Stump Grinding • Tree Spraying • Crane Services • Cabling & Bracing End of Summer Savings for all Early C D O FIREWO 10 % Coupon must be presented at time of estimate. New Customers Only . Expires 9-30-09 All Tree Work off Horticultural Services: • Annual Maintenance Contracts • Hemlock Sprays • Tick Sprays • Deep Root Feeding Locally Owned & Operated Free Estimates • Fully Insured 201-236-2429