‘That flag stands for freedom and they didn’t take that away…’
(Claire Russel, Liberty Headlines) After months of back-and-forth, the city of Statesville, North Carolina has reached an agreement with Gander RV that will allow the RV company to continue flying its giant, 40- by 80-foot American flag.
The city filed an injunction against Gander RV in May for flying a flag that surpasses the city limit on flag size.
Marcus Lemonis, a businessman and reality television star, issued his support for RV Gander and urged them to refuse to take it down. The result was a city-wide battle that lasted over a year.
As part of the settlement, Gander must pay $14,350 for violation costs and $2,000 for legal costs, according to WBTV, and the city will amend its flag size ordinance to allow larger flags to fly near business highways.
On Monday, the Statesville city council unanimously voted to approve the amended ordinance.
Lemonis applauded the resolution on Twitter.
— Marcus Lemonis (@marcuslemonis) October 7, 2019
Residents who attended the city council meeting defended Gander and its right to fly the American flag.
“They made it happen to do what was right,” one resident, Donny Bradley, told WCNC. “That flag stands for freedom, and they didn’t take that away.”
The city council’s decision marks a significant reversal from its position earlier this summer.
The council voted 5-3 in June to stand its ground and keep enforcing the limited flag size, despite the recommendations of Statesville Mayor Costi Kutteh, who issued his support for an amendment.
Statesville council member John Staford said the city council’s decision to amend its flag size ordinance was the right one.
“Him flying that flag causes no harm and endangers no one,” said Staford. “This is an item that should have never come to fruition or reared it’s ugly head.”
Monday’s vote was “a good opportunity to give the existing council a chance to correct this embarrassment to our city before they leave office,” Staford continued.