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Source: The Pipeline (South Bay, California)
Date: July 17, 2009
Byline: Gene Maddaus

Flag flap: Mayor takes heat for flying flag at half staff for Michael Jackson

Inspired by Michael Jackson's funeral last week, Mayor Jim Dear ordered the U.S. flag flown at half staff outside Carson City Hall.

Dear has received numerous calls and e-mails about this, some of them hostile.

As we mentioned when we first reported this, Carson's city code allows the mayor to fly the flag at half staff when he deems it appropriate. But as several experts on flag protocol [Webmaster's note: ushistory.org spoke with Mayor Dear] have pointed out, the U.S. Flag Code does not give mayors this power.

In response to the complaints, Dear has decided to amend Carson's ordinance to remove the mayor's authority to fly the flag at half staff. He expects the amendment to be debated at the council's first meeting in August.

The mayor will still have the power to lower the city flag. However, the Carson flag is at three-quarter staff in honor of soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, and will remain that way until they come home.

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