UPDATE: Nativity Scene Allowed to Return With One Addition
A nativity scene taken down near the Toledo Fire Department is back up thanks to one key addition.
KCRG reports that the Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter last week calling for the nativity scene to be removed from government property. They claimed it violated laws requiring a separation between church and state.
Now, officials have come up with a solution that allows the display to be back up at the fire department. KCRG reports that the nativity scene has been put up along with a display of Santa Claus. Officials say by adding a secular holiday symbol, the display becomes legal.
For 15 years, the nativity scene outside of the Toledo Fire Department has been a tradition for the small Eastern Iowa town. But that tradition has come under fire and that nativity has been taken down.
CBS2 reports that the Toledo Fire Department's nativity scene has been taken down after it received a complaint from a national group that it shouldn't have been there in the first place. The nativity scene was taken down on December 7th after a complaint from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. The fire department took down the display to avoid any potential legal action.
CBS2 reports that many residents of the Tama County town spoke out at a city hall meeting on Monday night. Most want the scene to stay where it has been for the past 15 years. Supporters suggest asking lawmakers for assistance in getting the nativity scene back up. City officials say they are looking into how to handle the situation.
So we want to do our due diligence to make sure we're doing everything we can. The support is definitely there to keep the nativity set up.
Toledo city officials told CBS2 that they plan to meet with city attorneys to avoid any potential lawsuits. In the meantime, the nativity scene can still be viewed. It is just a few blocks away from the fire department where it currently sits on private property.
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