Plans are moving forward to remove the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee at Dallas’ Lee Park, perhaps before the weekend.
There have been multiple delays to the impending removal of the controversial statue since Dallas city council members voted 13-1 to approve the move, including a temporary restraining order, a problem with the equipment that was initially brought to the park and a fatal crash involving the backup crane that was en route to Dallas to finish the job.
The cost of the removal, as well as the stepped up security at Lee Park by Dallas police, who have positioned officers at the park 24/7 this week, is expected to be in the range of $400,000 to $450,000, according to the office of Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings.
And the continued delays could result in additional costs that have yet to be tallied.
Many of those who are opposed to the removal of the statue have balked at that price tag, arguing that the money would be better spent on other areas of the city.
In response to questions from NBC DFW about the cost, Mayor Rawlings noted that price is not the primary concern.
“This decision is fundamentally not about money. This is a decision about morality, about right vs. wrong,” Mayor Rawlings said in a statement released late Wednesday night. “The cost is justified for the same reasons I have stated repeatedly: In my view, this statue has become a dangerous totem of racism, especially in light of the deplorable display in Charlottesville of torch-wielding white supremacists marching in support of a Robert E. Lee statue there.”