ACLU, Cranston Agree On Prayer Banner Legal Fees

The controversy over the prayer banner at Cranston High School West has come to an end.      The banner was recently removed for good, and Tuesday there's an agreement between the city of Cranston and the ACLU over legal fees.      

The ACLU wanted 173 thousand dollars in legal fees. It's getting almost all of that. The city of Cranston and the school committee settled with the civil rights group for 150 thousand.

“We're going to sharpen our pencils and see where this is going to come from,” said Cranston school committee member Frank Lombardi, “I hope though that there's also another alternative.”

The city and school district, which are both struggling financially, have to come up with the money. One idea is sell the prayer banner that started the controversy. Businesses, church organizations, even some people are interested in it.

“That might have a financial tag to it that will help us to defray the cost of this,” said Lombardi.

And then there's the 25 hundred dollars it cost to take the banner down. The prayer banner was removed from the Cranston West auditorium Saturday, held together by two pieces of plywood, put in a truck and sent to a confidential location.

“We don't want anyone to really know where it is at this point in any way shape or form,” said Chief Operating Officer Raymond Votto, “Just in case there are any inquiries at that location and maybe folks trying to get in and maybe do something.”

The school committee will take up who gets the prayer banner March 14th.