RAMAPO, N.Y. (CBSNewYork)A vote Tuesday to expand the Town Board in Ramapo — and split it up into districts — is exposing a political battle that runs along ethnic lines.

Local activist Mike Parietti told WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman the idea is to reduce the power of the diverse town’s Jewish community.

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“Because of the political clout that the Orthodox and the ultra-Orthodox and Hasidic community have … they don’t really have to communicate with us,” Parietti said. “They don’t have to get our input.”

The Jewish lobbying group Agudath Israel said in a statement that “efforts to inhibit the voting power of any minority group are simply intolerable.”

And Brendel Charles, the only African-American on the board, said she feels caught in the crossfire.

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“As a casualty of this small victory that they’re trying to claim, the minorities could, in fact, possibly, lose representation,” she said.

Parietti said Charles has got it reversed.

“We think that would provide African-Americans their fair share of representation,” he said.

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