State flag still flying in Tupelo

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The Tupelo City Council voted 5-2 Tuesday night to enact a policy that would keep the Mississippi flag in place on municipal property, the Daily Journal reported.

The policy was designed to ensure that the flag flies in front of a new police department headquarters that hasn’t yet opened, the newspaper said.

All council members present for the vote. The council’s only two black members, Ward 4 Councilwoman Nettie Davis and Ward 7 Councilman Willie Jennings, offered the dissenting votes, the newspaper reported.

The council’s vote was a veto-proof majority, so Mayor Jason Shelton cannot successfully stop the policy through executive action.

Council President Lynn Bryan presented the flag policy to the council during a Monday afternoon session.

The policy proposed by Bryan and adopted by the council requires that the U.S. flag fly at municipal facilities where just one flag pole is present. Where more than one flag pole is present, the Mississippi state flag would be flown, according to the proposed policy.

The Daily Journal noted that the policy largely leaves in place current practices.

Council members on Monday also discussed asking state lawmakers to change the state flag. No resolution has been formally presented on that matter, the newspaper said. 

Bryan attended a meeting last week with other Tupelo officials and Gov. Phil Bryant at which Bryant expressed his continued support for state voters to decided the question about replacing the state flag.

Last week the Mississippi Economic Council unveiled a banner celebrating the state’s bicentennial next year. The move prompted renewed discussion of the state flag.