Mosque discussion moved to March

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) The Kern County Board of Supervisors announced Tuesday that it'll wait until March to make a decision about plans to build an Islamic center on Stockdale Highway.

In mid-November the plans for the mosque and school were approved by the county planning commission.

That decision was appealed by Buckaroo Residents Group. Tuesday, the appeal was continued until the Board of Supervisors' March 11 meeting.

Supervisors want more time to hear from both sides.

"It was pretty expected," said Fatima Dadabhoy, civil rights attorney with Council on American-Islamic Relations. "Some of the arguments on both sides were very last minute."

The Islamic Center plan calls for construction on the northeast corner of Stockdale and Driver Road. They propose a community center, a school for kindergarten through eighth-grade students, and a church.

The plans call for a 49-foot dome and 52-foot steeple on the mosque.

Nora Webber spoke up against the plans. She says the 9.6-acre proposal is just too big to run on just a septic tank.

She believes any development of this size should build its own sewage treatment plant.

"It takes that responsibility off the taxpayers to have to build sewage treatment plants for private facilities," said Webber.

The decision to continue the discussion gives the county more time to consider those issues.

So as the discussion is continued, it's back to work for attorneys on both sides.

"Researching the issue, figuring out the underlying issues," said Dadabhoy. "Can we work through them? How we're going to work through them, and get this project going?"