Whiteville settles lawsuit over cross atop tower

WHITEVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A dispute that began when a West Tennessee town put a cross atop a city water tower has been resolved with a lawsuit settlement.

Statements from both Whiteville government and the Freedom From Religion Foundation confirm the agreement to not place religious symbols on city property.

The Jackson Sun reported the town board signed it Monday night.

After the atheist group threatened legal action, the town removed one arm of the cross. The foundation said it complained to town officials in three letters and didn't file suit until after the mayor placed more crosses in front of City Hall in December, decorating them with wreaths.

The foundation says Whiteville must pay a $20,000 legal fee to the group's Nashville attorney. City officials say insurance will cover most of it.

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