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Board of Commissioners to Seek Permission to Put Confederate Monument Issue on Ballot

GASTONIA, N.C. – At its regular meeting Tuesday night, the Gaston County Board of Commissioners directed County Attorney Jonathan Sink to engage the local delegation to the General Assembly in an effort to place the issue of the Confederate monument relocation on the ballot.

There was no formal vote on the issue, but rather a request from a majority of the board. In addition to the request to put the matter on the ballot, the board also directed Sink to obtain further clarification to the 2015 North Carolina law that places restrictions upon the relocation of objects of remembrance.

Chairman Tracy Philbeck, in speaking for the majority that included Commissioners Jack Brown, Allen Fraley and Chad Brown, said it was important for the Board of Commissioners to have in writing from the legal counsel for the State Senate and State House of Representatives what the specific exceptions are for relocating the monument.

If the legislature declines to pass a bill to put the issue before Gaston County voters, Philbeck said the commissioners could decide to take up the issue again.

Commissioners Ronnie Worley, Bob Hovis and Tom Keigher favored having the board take a vote to determine the statue’s fate.