FL: MUSLIM SCHOOL AT 'DEAD END' IN CODE FIGHT
A hundred Muslim students are out of school as their administrators squabble with Orange County code enforcement over staying in portables until their $2.3 million building is finished.
"We have 100 kids here with nowhere to go," said Imam Tariq Rasheed of the Islamic Center of Orlando.
Buena Vista Muslim Academy, on 7 acres owned by the Islamic Center, has until Monday to remove five portables on its property at 11543 Ruby Lake Road in the Lake Buena Vista area.
The elementary school has been operating out of portables for nearly seven years -- its whole existence.
It is opening a two-story, 27,000-square-foot facility, which is being renamed Muslim Academy of Greater Orlando. The building is nearly done, administrators say.
"We need four to eight more weeks," said Abrahim Mamsa, Buena Vista's director of administration.
But code-enforcement officials say they have given the school enough time to remove the portables, which never received permits.
"Time has run out," said Mitch Gordon, Orange County zoning manager.
Starting Monday, the school has to start paying $1,000 a day until the portables are gone.
The dispute has been ongoing for years.
The Buena Vista Muslim Academy portables sit near the mosque on the Islamic Center of Orlando's campus off Apopka-Vineland Road.