ACLU / Franklin County
9:27 am
Wed May 23, 2012

ACLU sues Franklin County over prayers at meetings

The American Civil Liberties Union is suing an eastern Missouri county in an effort to halt prayers at county commission meetings.

The Washington Missourian reports that the suit was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in St. Louis by the ACLU on behalf of an anonymous resident of Franklin County. It alleges that the commission begins meetings with a prayer in violation of the U.S. and Missouri constitutions.

Presiding Commissioner John Griesheimer has said he prefers to fight the ACLU but is concerned about spending taxpayer money in litigation.

Meanwhile, County Counselor Mark Vincent says he is drafting a policy for commission meetings that addresses concerns in the lawsuit and will meet federal and state laws.