Jackson Co. commissioners to form Ten Commandments committee - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Jackson Co. commissioners to form Ten Commandments committee

A committee will oversee a project that would place the Ten Commandments and other historical documents at the courthouse. (Source: WAFF) A committee will oversee a project that would place the Ten Commandments and other historical documents at the courthouse. (Source: WAFF)
SCOTTSBORO, AL (WAFF) - Jackson County commissioners took a step towards placing a Ten Commandments display among other historical documents at the courthouse.

The commissioners agreed to create a committee to oversee the project during Monday night's meeting. A small group of county residents appointed to the committee will influence the design, location and underwriting of the monument.

Some historical documents that would be included in the installation are the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

Commissioner Tim Guffey spearheaded the project. He previously said he hopes the inclusion of these documents sparks a grassroots movement throughout the country, in an effort to remind the public about the foundations upon which the country was formed.

"I asked different questions about the Constitution, Declaration of Independence - do you know this or that about it - and nobody could tell me much at all," Guffey explained Monday. "I was shocked."

Many at Monday's meeting said the Ten Commandments is a historical document and important to display. Longtime county resident John Winters echoed Guffey's thoughts. He said a reminder of what our founding fathers believed in can do a world of good.

"I'm in favor of it," Winters said. "I feel like our country has gone downhill because we've left those items out."

Some argue that placing a Ten Commandments monument would violate the separation of church and state. A decade ago, the state supreme court ordered Chief Justice Roy Moore to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the outside of the Alabama Judicial Building. When he refused, he was removed from office.

Commissioners said that difference in opinion is why getting public input is a must. Guffey said a handful of residents will be selected to hear from the public about their thoughts, concerns and ideas. He said the monument is not meant to spark controversy, only education.

"I am hoping it sparks an interest in people wanting to study and see what our founding fathers done to make this country great," he said.

The monument would be built through private donors - not taxpayer money. Guffey said the commission will accept applications to be a member of the committee over the next several weeks.

It will likely be a few months before any decision is made by the county commission.

Meanwhile, the Alabama House approved a proposed constitutional amendment allowing the Ten Commandments in schools and other public places. Voters could possibly decide its fate in November.

Copyright 2014 WAFF. All rights reserved.

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