On Tuesday, no one answered if Madison County and the state of Alabama are negotiating how to remove a Confederate monument outside the courthouse.
The state already fined Birmingham and Mobile for moving monuments. On Monday, we tried asking Attorney General Steve Marshall what that means for Madison County’s push to remove a statue a lot of people consider racist.
WAAY 31 repeatedly called and emailed Attorney General Steve Marshall's office, by sending two emails and calling twice, but we still haven’t received any response.
Madison County commissioners are waiting to learn what they can and can’t do with this monument outside the county courthouse. They unanimously voted to remove it but want to ask the state how to do so legally to avoid a $25,000 fine.
So far, Attorney General Steve Marshall refused to answer that question but fined Birmingham and Mobile for breaking a 2017 law that bans removing monuments more than 40 years old.
In one email, WAAY 31 asked Marshall why he told us last week there are no exceptions to the law when it states the availability of a waiver from a state committee. We also asked since all the state can do is issue a one-time fine of $25,000, if the penalty is just a form of extortion to make Alabama money?
Last week, commissioners said they want to avoid the fine and plan to ask a state committee for approval to remove the statue at a meeting in Montgomery next month.
A group called the Tennessee Valley Progressive Alliance said it already raised more than $30,000 to pay any fine for removing the statue.