Friday, August 05, 2016
Sikh Center Sues Under RLUIPA After Work On New Temple Is Ordered Stopped
NBC News reports on a federal lawsuit filed in the Eastern District of New York last week by the Guru Gobind Singh Sikh Center against the Town of Oyster Bay, New York. In July-- almost 17 months after approving the Center's site plan for its new gurdwara-- the town issued a stop work order and ordered an environmental review, saying that the construction departed from the site plan. Claiming that the town's actions were taken to appease some residents who are hostile to the temple and its worship, the suit alleges violations of RLUIPA as well as the 1st and 14th Amendments. The new building, which replaces an older one that was on the same site, is already 82% complete. The Center has spent over $3 million on construction and on costs subsequent to the stop work order.