LAKELAND, Fla. -- Lakeland city commissioners have voted to move the confederate monument in Munn Park.

  • Lakeland commission OKs move of Munn Park Confederate statue
  • It will be moved to Veterans Park with private funding
  • Moving the statue will cost about $200,000

The city commission, with four different members, voted last December to move the monument but asked city staff to come up with proposed locations and the costs involved. 

The city staff recommended either Veterans Park next to the RP Funding Center or Roselawn Cemetery. A staff report concluded the cost would be more than $200,000. 

City commissioners voted 7-0 Monday to move the monument to Veterans Park.

"Relocating the confederate monument there will send a strong signal to Lakelanders present and future that we are honoring and remembering our war dead. Nothing more. Nothing less," said commissioner Scott Franklin.

Veterans Park and RP Funding Center are located on what used to be an African-American Lakeland neighborhood called Moorehead. Residents were forced to move to make way for what was then known as the Lakeland Civic Center back in the 1970s.

Lakeland NAACP president Reginald Ardis expressed some concern about the confederate monument being placed on the Moorehead location.

"It's a tough situation but to leave it in Munn Park is a bigger deal, so we'll accept it going to Veterans Park," he said. 

Commissioners also decided that no public funds would be used for the relocation. It would have to be funded by private donations. No exact timetable has been set for the move. 

A supporter of keeping the monument in Munn Park was required to leave the public comment podium for not sticking to rules for discussing the proposed move.