Brigham City, AClU work out agreement

Tuesday , March 18, 2014 - 3:08 PM

Scott Schwebke

BRIGHAM CITY — Officials in Brigham City agreed Thursday not to enforce the city’s Free Speech Zone Ordinance being challenged in federal court by the American Civil Liberties Union of Utah on behalf of Main Street Church of Brigham.

The agreement was reached between the law firm of Snow, Christensen & Martineau, which represents Brigham City, and the ACLU, John Mejia, legal director for the ACLU of Utah, told the Standard-Examiner in a phone interview late Thursday night.

As a result, representatives of Main Street Church are permitted to hand out literature on public sidewalks surrounding The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Brigham City Temple, said Mejia.

Main Street Church agreed to limit the number of its representatives to four on each side of the street.

The agreement does not suspend the lawsuit the ACLU filed Tuesday against Brigham City. Main Street Church and the ACLU of Utah have not conceded that any past enforcement of the ordinance was constitutional.

The ALCU and Main Street Church also continue to contend that the ordinance is unconstitutional on its face and that it should be completely struck down by the court.

"We are thrilled that our clients are no longer being banned from public sidewalks merely because they would like to express their views, assemble, and freely exercise their religion," Mejia said in a prepared statement.

Brigham City officials could not be reached for comment late Thursday night regarding the agreement.

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