HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – The Alabama Attorney General’s office is hoping to speed things up in the state’s case against Madison County over the relocation of a Confederate monument last year.
Steve Marshall’s office filed a motion on Wednesday requesting to expedite a ruling in the case.
Right now, the case is stalled because there’s no judge to review it.
Two judges so far have recused themselves from the case, the most recent being Madison County Circuit Judge Karen Hall on March 1.
The motion filed by the Attorney General’s Office claims that the Madison County Commission has no reasonable defense for contracting the City of Huntsville to move the monument from the Madison County Courthouse to Maple Hill Cemetery last October.
The lawsuit claims that the county commission violated the 2017 Monument Protection Law, but the Commission has said that the law is unconstitutionally vague and the $25,000 fine for violating the law is unconstitutionally excessive.
The Attorney General’s Office is asking a judge to immediately rule in the state’s favor and order the county to pay the fine.
According to AL.com, the state cites three reasons for expediting the case.
First, they say the language in the law itself is clear that the monument could not be moved without a waiver.
Second, the state points to a 2019 ruling by the Alabama Supreme Court that the City of Birmingham was wrong in placing a plywood barrier around a Confederate monument.
Finally, the state says that while Madison County did request a waiver to move the monument, that waiver was denied by the Alabama Department of History and Archives, which the state says has the authority to deny those requests.
The case was originally assigned to Madison County Circuit Judge Donna Pate; she immediately recused herself.
As of right now, a new judge has not been assigned to the lawsuit.