NEWARK, N.J. – A federal judge says an upscale New Jersey town violated anti-discrimination laws by insisting that a proposed mosque have more parking spaces than churches or synagogues.
The judge on Saturday ruled that Bernards Township violated the Religious Land Use and Institutional Persons Act by applying a different standard to Muslims.
He said the township's planning board had "unbridled and unconstitutional discretion" due to its vague parking requirements.
The Islamic Society's application to build the mosque was denied after more than three years and 39 public hearings. The group sued the township in March.
The mosque's attorney, Adeel Mangi, called the decision a "landmark ruling."
NJ.com reports township officials say they "vehemently" disagree with the decision and will decide how to proceed after the township's attorneys study it.