RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - The Latest on a North Carolina commission deciding whether to move Confederate statues (all times local):
A historical commission in North Carolina has decided to create a separate group to study whether the state should move three Confederate memorials from the grounds of the old capitol to a Civil War battlefield 50 miles (80 kilometers) away.
The new commission will study the state law that only allows monuments to be moved to places of similar honor, prominence and visibility. The group will provide the North Carolina Historical Commission with the pros and cons of moving the statues.
The Historical Commission will review the study in April.
Gov. Roy Cooper asked the Historical Commission to approve moving three Confederate memorials to the Bentonville Battlefield, south of Raleigh. Republicans lawmakers then suggested there would be lawsuits if the memorials were moved.
Commission member David Ruffin said Friday the group is not ignoring the issue, but as wants to decide it carefully outside of the current controversy nationwide about Confederate statues.
The future location of three Confederate memorials on North Carolina’s old Capitol grounds could depend on a state panel asked by the governor to move the monuments to a Civil War battle site.
The North Carolina Historical Commission is meeting Friday to consider Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s request to relocate the monuments to Bentonville Battlefield, south of Raleigh. The memorials include a 75-foot-tall (23-meter-tall) obelisk remembering all of the state’s Confederate dead and two smaller statutes.
State law limits relocations to places of similar honor, prominence and visibility. Republican legislators say Bentonville doesn’t meet the requirement and suggest someone will sue if the commission grants the request.
Cooper announced his plans in the weeks following a violent rally in Virginia and the toppling of a local monument in Durham.
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