Norfolk City Council unanimously votes to relocate city’s Confederate monument

Norfolk

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Norfolk City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to relocate its Confederate monument from a prominent location downtown to Elmwood Cemetery.

City Council a virtual public hearing on Tuesday night to help decide what to with the recently-removed Confederate monument. One member, Paul R. Riddick, was absent from the meeting.

The process is still not over, however. State law requires the city wait another 30 days to offer the monument up to a museum or other group before moving it themselves.

During the meeting, one resident who spoke during the public hearing suggested the city turn to the the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields to see if they would like to have the monument. There are already several monuments that call the valley home.

City Manager Chip Filer said the city hasn’t heard anything from the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields, but suggested he could make contact with them to see if they wanted to take possession of the monument.

Last month, Norfolk removed its 113-year-old “Johnny Reb” statue from its 80-foot pedestal downtown. Mayor Kenny Alexander ordered the statue’s removal due to safety concerns, after a protester was seriously injured by a falling Confederate statue across the river in Portsmouth.

Previous coverage: Norfolk Confederate statue removed from monument downtown

The statue’s relocation to storage came ahead of a new state law that went into effect on July 1, which allows localities to remove, relocate or add context to Confederate monuments.

Outside groups such as museums will have a 30-day window from the hearing to submit a plan of their own before Norfolk can make a move.

After the 30-day period, Norfolk could decide to give the monument to an outside group or move it to Elmwood.


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