Friday, December 04, 2015

Christian Camp Gets Preliminary Injunction Allowing It To Use Its Buses For Released Time Program

According to Public Opinion News, a Pennsylvania federal district court on Wednesday issued a preliminary injunction permitting Joy El Ministries to go back to using its own buses for its public school Released Time Bible Program while its lawsuit challenging state regulatory contentions is pending. The lawsuit, originally filed in state court, was removed to federal court by the state because it raises federal Establishment Clause issues. (Herald Mail Media).  As previously reported, Pennsylvania State Police cited the Greencastle, Pennsylvania Christian camp for transporting students to and from school for its a once-a-week "released time" program in buses that do not  meet the standards for vehicles owned by the school district or under contract with it.  Among other things, the buses used by Camp Joy El do not have swinging stop signs attached to the side, are not marked as school buses and are not painted with the specifically required yellow paint. The camp claims its buses are not school buses and its program is not an extracurricular activity, so that it is not covered by the regulations.  The camp has been renting other buses since state police cited it for violations.