Brookfield aldermen approved plans for a nearly 13,000-square-foot mosque (to be expanded to 22,000 sq. ft), to the joy of Waukesha County Muslims and the chagrin of opponents who sought to table the project.
Brookfield Patch The Common Council voted 14-0 Tuesday to grant a conditional use permit, with aldermen assuring residents the city had “thoroughly vetted” traffic and other site issues before green-lighting construction. “We’re elated,” said Mushir Hassan, a Muslim resident and project leader for the mosque.
Mayor Steve Ponto, who voted in favor of the mosque last week as head of the city’s Plan Commission, said Tuesday he believed the city had been transparent and open with its mosque review. “I know that it’s a sensitive matter for many residents,” Ponto told Patch but added: “I really am confident that we will not have any problems.” (You know what happens when you assume)
Residents urged rejection or tabling of the mosque plans, citing concerns ranging from traffic and future expansion to terrorism and use of Sharia or Islamic law to subvert U.S. laws.
Charles Cook of Hartland asked aldermen to write conditions into the development agreement barring Muslims from exercising Sharia law over city rules and regulations. Cook turned to face the audience. “I just want to say thank you for you Muslim people, for coming out and trying to build this mosque. This has helped the Christians to get out of the churches and take back America,” Cook said.
Residents criticize ‘veiled threat’ by Muslims
Some residents said they didn’t appreciate the “veiled threat” that a Muslim leader gave city plan commissioners at a packed public hearing last week when he said federal government civil rights officials investigate denials of mosques.
Brookfield resident Beverly Kuntzsch told aldermen she was concerned about public safety. She said the New York Police Department surveyed 100 mosques nationwide in 2007 and found substantial ties to terrorism and “Jihad.”
“How will you monitor the literature or the preaching / teaching of violence that’s going on in the mosques?” Kuntzsch asked. Dan Bregant, who lives on Calhoun Road, said he had a petition of opposition from residents across the city.
Traffic congestion will get an ‘F’
The city said that although the traffic “level of service” would worsen to an “F” when the mainly weekly Friday services are let out about 2 p.m.
Resident Ted Gibbs noted the Islamic Society originally asked to build a 22,000 sq. ft. mosque and still has plans to expand to that size.