Summarized by Kent Larsen
Temple steeple suit finally gets its days in court
Belmont MA Citizen-Herald 15Dec99 N1
By Denise Dube: Correspondent
BELMONT, MASSACHUSETTS -- The lawsuit preventing the LDS Church from
completing the steeple on the Boston Temple was finally heard, with
closing arguments presented to the Judge on Tuesday. The lawsuit
challenges the Belmont Zoning Board of Appeals' decision to allow the
Church to build a 130-foot steeple on the Temple.
"After so many delays we were pleased to have the issue heard before
the court. We firmly believe that we are within our rights to
construct the steeple and that we followed all appropriate procedures
to receive approval for the steeple from the town," said Diana
Pisciotta of GPC/O'Neill &Associates, the LDS Church's PR firm for
the Temple. The Belmont Citizen-Herald wasn't able to get comments
from the plantiffs' attorney by press time. The trial was originally
filed in May 1997, and delayed multiple times due to the Court's
schedule. The Court began hearing the case Wednesday, December 8th.
The judge that heard the case in Middlesex Superior Court will
deliberate and issue a ruling when he is ready.
Meanwhile, the appeal of the U.S. District Court's decision on the
constitutionality of the "Dover Amendment" that the Belmont ZBA
relied on when allowing construction of the Temple has been
scheduled. Arguments are to be heard in the case before a three
judge panel of the First Circuit Court of Appeals in January.