Published March 29, 2013
A U.S. Marine has been ordered by local officials to remove an American flag and flagpole that he installed outside his Florida home after returning home from serving in Iraq.
Gregory Schaffer told WPTV.com that he received a citation from the town of Hypoluxo, Fla., listing the flagpole as a violation of the town's permitting code.
"It's sad. It's sad that we have to go through that just to fly a flag," Schaffer told the station.
The 24-year-old Marine said a neighbor filed a complaint with the town within days after he installed the flagpole in his yard.
"It's disgusting that anybody should have to go through that. I fought for the flag, now I'm paying for the flag," Schaffer told the station.
A town building department official told WPTV.com that the flagpole is considered a structure and must be removed since Schaffer does not have a permit.
Schaffer told the station that because he is renting his property, he would have to hire a third party contractor to apply for the permit, which could cost up to $1,000.
The building department official said the town will try to work with the veteran to help him with the permitting process.