Township could face lawsuit over Trump flags on display

Local News

BIGLER TOWNSHIP, CLEARFIELD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ)– Multiple flags depicting President Donald Trump inside the Bigler Township building may result in legal action if not removed.

Bigler Township supervisor chairman Philbert Myers said he received a phone call Tuesday from the Clearfield County State Democratic Committeeman stating he must take down the Trump flags hanging in the building.

One of the flags displayed in the Bigler Township municipal building

“This is a sad state of affairs when you are attacked for supporting the President of the United States,” Myers said.

Myers said there are several American flags, a Clearfield County flag, a state flag and a Veterans of Foreign Wars flag, along with the Trump flags, in the building.

“Meaning only one thing, I support our country, our our state, our county, our veterans, and our president,” Myers said. “If this display of flags is taken any other way, shame on you.”

Myers said he already removed a flag that said “Trump 2020” because it can be considered a campaign flag, but could not find any law for why they couldn’t be displayed.

“That is the only flag I will remove and apologize for, and I do apologize” Myers said.

Clearfield County State Democratic Committeeman Terry Noble said that’s not the case.

“If it was a traditional, dignified picture of President Trump, that is fine, but these clearly are not that,” Noble said. “These are what would be called electioneering materials.”

He said a concerned citizen reached out to him to report the flags were on display in the public building.

“You have a township supervisor, Mr. Myers, who is trying to place his personal opinion utilizing not only the resources of Bigler Township, but also the name of Bigler Township, giving the auspices as if the township of Bigler has made a formal declaration of support to Mr. Trump,” Noble said.

Myers said he will remove the flags on election days because Trump is a presidential candidate and the Bigler Township building is a voting precinct.

“With extreme research, that is the only statue that I have found in the Second Class Township Code, that these flags cannot be flown for election days.” Myers said. “They will be down, no problem.”

However, Noble said if the flags are not removed permanently, he may sue, and that would be costly for the township.

“If it takes a federal judge to say the signs are inappropriate, than so be it,” Noble said. “They’re risking financial losses from litigation, from grant money. All in all, it’s a shame that one of their supervisors could literally put their township at risk.”

Myers said he will take personal and financial responsibility if this situation does lead to a lawsuit.

“If there is any justification for legal recourse, I myself, assume all responsibilities,” Myers said. “I hung these flags, not Bigler Township.”

Myers said the flags have been hanging for three to four months and there haven’t been any complaints until now.

Myers also said he used his own money, not township funds, to purchase the flags.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Don't Miss