West Virginia bill to protect historic displays advances
A West Virginia bill that aims to protect historic displays is advancing.
The Register-Herald reported the “West Virginia Monument and Memorial Protection Act of 2018” passed out of the Senate Committee on Government Organization Tuesday. The bill prohibits the removal, renaming, alteration or relocation of any statue, monument, memorial, school, street, bridge, building or park more than 50 years old that is recognized by the state Historic Preservation Office. The protected items also have to be named in honor of historical, military, labor, civil rights or Native American events, figures and organizations and on public property.
Legislators said the bill was prompted by the Confederate monument removal debate.
In August 2017, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice denounced violence by white supremacists and neo-Nazis in neighboring Virginia but indicates he had no immediate plans to act on requests to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson from the Capitol grounds in Charleston.
The policy director of the ACLU-West Virginia, Eli Baumwell, said the bill’s an “inexcusable waste of our Legislature’s limited time.”
It now heads to the Senate Committee on Finance.
Copyright 2018 Associated Press.