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Lee Monument lawsuit cites plummeting property value

Posted at 8:13 PM, Jun 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-15 20:17:43-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- A second lawsuit has been filed that challenges Virginia Governor Ralph Northam's order to remove the Lee Monument from Richmond's Monument Avenue.

The lawsuit was filed by six Monument Avenue residents who said they feared the removal of the statue would lead to them losing tax credits and property value on their homes.

The lawsuit was filed in state court, but Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced Monday that he had moved the matter to federal court.

A lawsuit filed last week, halted plans to remove the Lee statue from Monument Avenue based on the original land deed signed in 1890.

That lawsuit, filed by William Gregory, who is the great-grandson of one of the original families that signed over the monument, alleges that Governor Northam and Virginia officials have failed to protect the Lee Monument grounds and that plans to remove the statue violate the original agreement.

Northam had previously ordered the removal of the statue from Monument Avenue "as soon as possible."

He said now is the time to deal with symbols that honor the cause of division in the commonwealth, which is home to more Confederate commemorations than any other state.