I‘ve been closely following the events surrounding the Town of Monroe and the Village of Kiryas Joel for the last several years. As a 17-year resident of South Blooming Grove I had an understanding of what was occurring in Monroe and how it would directly affect me. So, I made the conscious decision to start attending the Monroe Town Board meetings.

My first town meeting was a seriously eye-opening experience. I witnessed firsthand how the sitting supervisor, former Councilman Burke and current Councilman McQuade were rude and condescending to the room full of concerned citizens who were looking for answers to very pressing matters.

The despicable actions of the previous board proved to me I needed to stay informed. My attendance at many subsequent Town of Monroe board meetings even further solidified my concern for the shameful things happening in Monroe and how it would impact South Blooming Grove.

During the annexation attempts, public concerns on anything related to annexation or Kiryas Joel were immediately shut down during every town meeting. The supervisor would regularly shut out his perceived enemies. These were the actions of a man hiding his true intentions, and I observed it with my own eyes.

I am quite disturbed by the negative attacks being launched by a very small minority, many of whom have never stepped foot in a town board meeting or lifted a finger to get involved.

Members of United Monroe Emily Convers, John Allegro and Mike Egan took the initiative to educate the public and woke up an otherwise sleeping electorate. They have placed solid representatives like Tony Cardone and Mike McGinn on the Monroe Town Board. They were able to stop the 507-acre annexation, which otherwise would have been approved. Rest assured had United Monroe never existed we would all be looking at high density housing right now and wondering, “how did that happen?”

I shudder at the thought of where Monroe and South Blooming Grove would be right now. United Monroe has had such a positive impact on the region that other grassroots groups like United South Blooming Grove and Chester United have been formed to help educate the residents of their communities.

United Monroe along with Preserve Hudson Valley have achieved a reasonable agreement for the separation of the Town of Monroe and Kiryas Joel. This agreement protects not only Monroe but also South Blooming Grove as well as the Monroe-Woodbury school district. This has been achieved by the tireless efforts of volunteers. I stand with United Monroe and their leadership, because they have done nothing but preserve my hometown and school district for no other reason other than it’s the right thing to do. I’ve seen these folks in action with my own eyes and they have proven their worth an infinite amount of times. We should all just give them a tremendous thank you!

Mary Myers

South Blooming Grove