On May 14, the Troutman Town Council in North Carolina unanimously approved the placement of the United States motto “In God We Trust” on the council building.
This approval signals another success for the U.S. Motto Action Committee, an organization that seeks to further the placement of "In God We Trust" on public buildings.
So far, the U.S. Motto Action Committee has made the request to place the national motto on a public building to at least 43 government bodies, of which only four have declined, according to Rich Lanier, vice chair of the Committee.
The matter was first brought up in the Troutman Town Council on April 6, when Mayor Elbert Richardson mentioned it. However, the council was not receptive to placing the national motto on the building if it made taxpayers responsible for any of the cost. Lanier came before them to advocate for displaying the motto and privately handling the cost.
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“Most people come here before you asking for money or something else," Lanier said. "I'm here to give you something … It's a reminder of our Judeo-Christian values and heritage. It's a reminder to invite God into our lives and into the decisions we make."
Lanier assured the council that the money needed to affix the motto to the building had already been secured — an estimated $800 to $1,200 — from a private donor. Mounting the motto wouldn’t cost taxpayers anything, according to Lanier.
Lanier also told the council that there was practically no risk of facing a viable lawsuit for displaying the motto.
After listening to Lanier’s argument, Mayor Pro Tem Teross Young made a motion to approve the measure.
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Town resident Curtis Fortner addressed the council and highly encouraged them to approve it.
"I can't think of anything more strengthening and unifying than passing by town hall and seeing that on our building," Fortner said.