The Orange County Health Department served the United Talmudic Academy (UTA) of Kiryas Joel Boys School with a cease and desist order on Thursday, May 21.
The Health Department, which was accompanied by the New York State Police, notified personnel present at the school of the unlawful operation.
On Wednesday, May 20, after receiving reports of the illegal operation, Health Department officials and the State Police visited the school. They found what appeared to be hundreds of students inside, not wearing personal protective equipment, not social distancing, and plainly in violation of the Governor’s Executive Orders. Health officials verbally directed the school to shut down immediately.
County officials notified the governor’s office of the violation on Wednesday morning and on Thursday, a formal cease and desist order was served.
“The County Health Department investigates as many complaints as we can, based on the severity of the potential violation as it pertains to the threat to public health during this communicable disease pandemic,” Orange County Health Commissioner Dr. Irina Gelman said the press release announcing the cease and desist order. “We refer all other potential violations of the Governor’s Executive Order to law enforcement as part of New York’s PAUSE program. This school has been notified that they are not to continue to operate and we expect them to comply.”
The United Talmudic Academy (UTA) of Kiryas Joel Boys School is one of more than 25 educational facilities within the community.
The incident came to light after News 12 reported the school was open.
Residents can file complaints regarding the operation of non-essential businesses or gatherings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by calling the New York State PAUSE Enforcement Assistance Task Force at 1-833-789-0470.