JACKSONVILLE, Florida – Three Jacksonville City Council members say they support the removal of the Confederate monument in Springfield Park, which was recently revealed to cost more than $ 1 million.
A press release from the Northside Coalition of Jacksonville reveals statements from three different members of city council, who each supported the removal of the monument.
Councilor Matt Carlucci, who recently announced he is running for mayor, released a statement supporting the removal of the statue in Springfield on Wednesday.
A press release from Frazier shows emails from two other council members, Reggie Gaffney and Ju’Coby Pittman, who also approved the statue’s removal.
“We commend Council members Matt Carlucci, Reginald Gaffney and Ju’Coby Pittman for having the political integrity necessary to move the city forward in the right direction. We expect there will be others who will also come on board, ”Frazier said in a prepared statement.
According to an email obtained Sunday night by News4Jax from the city to city council, the potential price of $ 1.29 million to remove the Southern Confederation Women’s Monument from the park does not include the additional expenses that would be related the storage or preservation of the statue. The email, which comes from Chief Executive Officer Brian Hughes, says the city will soon be asking Council to approve legislation to remove the monument.
In June 2020, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry ordered the Confederate statue in what was then known as Hemming Park, now James Weldon Johnson Park, be removed. Around this time, Curry also announced that all Confederate monuments in the city would be removed.
Last month, the Northside Coalition called on Curry to keep that promise. His email to City Council renews this appeal once again.
Frazier says the monument is a symbol of the racial issues plaguing the city.
“What we have is a major issue with race relations that few white politicians really want to admit. They want to look away and act like everything is fine here. It is not,” said Frazier.
Carlucci told News4Jax he made the move after months of conversations with voters.
“I just think it’s time to fix this problem. So I made the decision that I thought the statue should be taken down and I think it will bring healing to Jacksonville among a lot of people and help Jacksonville move forward, ”Carlucci said.
Seber Newsome, who lives in Yulee, is in favor of keeping the monument where it is. He called Carlucci’s approval a political coup and he believes the total cost of moving the monument will be over $ 1.29 million.
“It’s a low number. So what ? 1.3 million more to replenish it, ”he said.
It will take a majority vote in city council for the monument to be moved from Springfield.
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