College Place City Hall

College Place City Hall

COLLEGE PLACE — City Council voted unanimously at its Tuesday meeting to lower flags to half-staff every Monday in memory of victims of the coronavirus pandemic.

The order will be in effect Monday and will last throughout the city's state of emergency.

No residents in College Place have died from the coronavirus. Still, three residents within Walla Walla County have, including many in the state and country, according to the resolution document. This action acknowledges those people.

The resolution stated that more people have died from the virus than in many disasters where a flag was lowered.

After the resolution was passed, Council member Jerry Bobbitt stated that only the president or state governor holds the power to order a flag-lowering to half-staff.

“I love the intent of it … but I don’t think its following proper etiquette for our national symbol,” Bobbitt said.

Council member Melodie Selby said that while she respects the flag code, other mayors have taken this action.

Mayor Norma Hernández said she did not see any act of disrespect in lowering the flag to honor Americans who have died from this illness and the American families that are suffering due to the consequences of it.

No revocation request was made.

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Chloe LeValley covers the cities of Walla Walla and College Place as well as agriculture and the environment in the Walla Walla Valley. She is a graduate of San Francisco State University and joined the Union-Bulletin's team in October 2019.