House OKs making it harder to change historical markers - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

House OKs making it harder to change historical markers

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The Tennessee State Capitol in Nashville. AP photo The Tennessee State Capitol in Nashville. AP photo

By ERIK SCHELZIG, Associated Press

NASHVILLE (AP) - The Tennessee House has passed a bill that would make it more difficult to remove statues or rename streets dedicated to historical figures including Confederate leaders.

The chamber voted 71-23 on Thursday to approve the measure, titled the "Tennessee Heritage Protection Act."

Calls to remove Confederate imagery from public places multiplied rapidly across the South after the slaying of nine black churchgoers last June in Charleston, South Carolina. A white man espousing racist views and who posed in a photo with a Confederate flag has been charged with murder in the killings.

The bill would require a vote of two-thirds of the 29-member Tennessee Historical Commission, an increase from the current law, which requires a majority vote.

This story has been corrected to reflect that the word in first paragraph should be "statue," instead of "statute."

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