In 2003, The Record listed the Village of Kiryas Joel among municipalities in Orange County who don’t have a presence on the web. This information was met with wonderment by those familiar with the Village of Kiryas Joel. “They never lag behind other municipalities so what’s the reason they have no presence on the web,” many wondered.


For starters, I’ll confirm that this particular rumor about the Village of Kiryas Joel is true. Indeed, it does not have a presence on the web. This is the case for now.


Kiryas Joel is very proactive in all aspects of government services. Its School District, Sewer Plant, EMS Hatzoloh, Fire Department, Sanitation Department, Housing Authority, Health Center, Poultry Processing Plant along with its quest for a Business Center, Library and a Women’s Services Center are proof of that.


From all the ongoing projects its obvious that the Village of Kiryas Joel has not run out of steam The question therefore begs to be asked why did it drop the ball on establishing a presence on the web?

Well, the answer is quite forward and simple. Because of religious concerns.


Hold it! Stop!  


Before you bombard me with ‘separation of church and state’ issues, please be aware that neither New York State nor United States law requires a municipality to have a presence on the web. Also, since the web in its present form, is the gateway to all types of degenerative activities, no Kiryas Joel resident will get connected to the web so as not to expose their children to the maladies of the modern world. As such, for the Village to establish a presence on the web would be for naught.


All this is about to change, thanks in no small part to the Village’s proactive stance for its constituents.

Now, don’t get wrong ideas, Kiryas Joel is not about to relax its own standards. It will instead raise the standards of the internet. It will never happen, you say? Then you haven’t heard of J-Net, a company that provides filtering services between the web and its customers. J-Net, as you may have figured, stands for Jewish Net and its name says it all, an internet service that puts a kosher seal of approval on the sites that it allows you to visit by filtering out immodest photos and foul language.


For J-Net to become a reality in Kiryas Joel Frontier, the local internet provider, would have to participate. To that end Village officials coordinated a meeting between Frontier engineers and J-Net. Frontier was at first reluctant and its technicians emphasized all possible difficulties they may encounter. But Village officials were not swayed. Village Administrator Szegedin pointed out that business is about solutions while government is about bureaucracy but in this case the reverse was true.


Frontier executives promised to do their best to solve their technical issues and Village officials are hopeful that they will. But Village officials stressed that, either way, they remain committed to establishing a reliable internet service that meets the standards of Kiryas Joel’s residents. If all else fails the Village will have no choice but to install its own wireless tower to assure the success of the business center it is in the process of building. The business center will succeed only if it will provide an acceptable internet service otherwise businesses will not relocate there.


In fact, many businesses that are now located in Rockland County would relocate to Kiryas Joel if J-Net were available there.              


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