Pastor Fights County Over Permit For Home Bible Study
8:49 AM, May 28, 2009
A local pastor said the County has cited him for hosting a weekly Bible study in his home. The County said visitors who drive to those meetings are affecting traffic in the neighborhood.Pastor David Jones has been hosting weekly Bible studies at his Bonita home during the past five years. About 15 people attend the meetings, he told 10News.Jones said a visitor to a neighbor's house called the County after a Bible study member hit the visitors car while leaving. Shortly after, a county code enforcement officer gave him a citation that said he needed a permit to host the weekly Bible study meetings, he said.Jones and his attorneys sid he shouldn't have to get a permit for what he does inside his house. "We think it is clearly permissible. We think this is a violation of our constitutional rights," Jones told 10News.A County spokeswoman says the County is concerned with parking and its impact on the neighborhood.The two sides met Wednesday but resolved nothing.Jones said they're scheduled to meet again on June 9.