West Liberty trustees vote to keep Holiday tree

UPDATE @ 8:38 p.m. (Sept. 22): We've learned that the Liberty Two trustees voted 2-1 to keep the tree.

UPDATE @ 9:37 a.m. (Sept. 15)

After thousands of people rallied online to save a beloved holiday tree in the small village of West Liberty, the Village Council voted to keep the tree standing.

Four members voted in favor to keep the tree, one voted to cut it down and one abstained from the vote, said Village Clerk Cindee Boyd.

Liberty Twp. trustees will meet Tuesday, Sept. 22, to vote whether or not to keep the tree.

A petition with more than 2,000 signatures in favor of keeping the tree was presented to the village council Monday night, said Jeff Wolfe, who started the petition.

“We have conquered one hurdle,” he said.

If they vote in favor of keeping the tree, funds will need to be raised to put LED lights on the tree, which is currently strung with non-energy efficient bulbs, and new electrical wiring to ground the lights, Boyd said.

The money would have to be raised by Nov. 15 so that the tree could be ready for the lighting ceremony the day after Thanksgiving.

FIRST REPORT:

Nearly 1,000 people have joined a Facebook group opposing the possible removal of what they call a historic tree in downtown West Liberty.

The tree is outside of the town hall that is undergoing renovations, and council has proposed to remove the tree.

People are signing a petition asking council to keep the tree, which is normally lit during the holidays.