Wilson: Public hearing would precede mosque settlement

NORWALK, Conn. – Don’t expect a sudden announcement that Norwalk has settled with the Al Madany Islamic Center.

There is a process that will be followed before a settlement would be agreed to, Zoning Commission Vice Chairman Emily Wilson said.

Wilson said it’s a “major ‘if,’ because I have no idea where we are right now,” but “If at some point the Zoning Commission is asked to vote on a settlement, there will be a public hearing prior to, that the terms will be explained and that people, and the neighbors, can come and listen and have a chance to express their concerns or their questions.”

That’s what she has been told by attorneys, she said. A public hearing is part of the process, she said.

“I don’t know that it will happen at all, but just procedurally that is what we are looking at,” said Wilson, the Republican-endorsed candidate to represent the 142nd district in the Connecticut House of Representatives.

Al Madany sued Norwalk after the Zoning Commission turned down its application to put a mosque at 127 Fillow St. A federal judge has ordered all involved parties to refrain from speaking to the press about the case. Wilson expressed frustration at not being able to comment further.


8 responses to “Wilson: Public hearing would precede mosque settlement”

  1. John Hamlin

    The neighborhood doesn’t want it, the city will get no benefit from it, from the renderings it seems wildly inappropriate, yet our zoning regulatory scheme would allow it to be built? If yes, we need to change the zoning so that it protects surrounding property owners (and hold accountable those who let this happen). If not, then don’t settle.

  2. piberman

    After the studied silence of Mayor Rilling and City leaders on the bizzare charges of discrimination by 3 minority members of the BOE against other BOE members it would be premature to expect real “leadership” of City officials on the Mosque siting issue. The real loosers here are the neighborhood being targeted and public respect for our elected City officials for failing to demonstrate basic civic leadership.

  3. Oldtimer

    Professor Berman sounds like he thinks it would be appropriate to speak out about those charges and call them false without any investigation or even conversation with the people claiming discrimination. I hope he doesn’t make all his decisions with that little information. I also hope there is now some investigation or, at least, conversations with those people before assuming there is nothing to their charges.

  4. piberman

    Old Timer:
    If those bizzare discrimination charges by the 3 minority BOE members had any substance we’d see much more than a request from the NAACP to “discuss the issue”. In a real well governed community with respected public officials practicing old fashioned leaderhip we’d see sharp criticism of making such outrageous charges without evidence. That a savy leader like the NAACP President signs on to these bizzare undertakings is even more incredulous. Simply put: falsely accusing public officials of discrimination is unacceptable behavior by public officials. With more “spunk” our City’s Mayor would demand an “investigation” to ascertain the evidence and in the absence of same demand an apology. But like other Democrat leaders it looks like they’re all afraid of upsetting minority citizens who hold the Democratic Party without blemish. It’s embarrassing all around. A public apology would put it to rest. As it now stands the minority community has BOE members whose ability to contribute to the BOE is questioned. That’s another trajedy here. Most of our public school students are minorities yet representatives from their communities on the BOE behave outrageously. Why does that happen in Norwalk ? And why do concerned minority parents remain silent about such inappropirate representation by their “leaders” on the BOE ?

  5. Dennis DiManis

    The NAACP sided with Tanya McDowell.

  6. Suzanne

    A public hearing before the Zoning Commission is a pro forma process that seems to carry little weight with the Commission in most cases. Like the State Bond Commission proceedings, the decisions have already been made. I have not seen yet an alternative decision made due to public comment. Ms. Watson is running for office and trying to seem gratuitously benevolent about a situation that will be decided in legal proceedings.

  7. Scott

    Discrimination is a crutch that perpetuates prejudice

  8. Suzanne

    Scott, there is no discrimination here unless you believe people are being “discriminating” in evaluating the site, the adjacent streets and the potential for an overcrowded area with traffic hazards. If this was not a church but a residence or multi-family housing, it would have easily been dismissed. But because of prevailing laws exempting religious organizations (ANY religious organization not just Muslims) from responsible development, many people are concerned about this one. No prejudice nor discrimination just common sense.

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