KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Members of the community wanted to paint a Black Lives Matter street mural in front of a local school, with the mayor expressing her support, but there wasn’t time to get a permit.
The organizers aiming to paint the mural in front of Austin-East High School this weekend, but the city said they weren’t able to complete the full process of obtaining a permit. City offices are closed Friday due for the Fourth of July holiday this weekend.
Black Lives Matter Knoxville activist Constance Every said Thursday the goal of the street mural was to create a positive message. The city later saying, “with such notice, the organizers did not have time to obtain a permit. Every attempt was made to help the organizers realize the project in a safe, community-supported manner.”
Mayor Indya Kincannon said Thursday, “Although we tried our best, the minimum requirements have not yet been met and we were not able to issue a permit.”
The mayor also said that she supported Black Lives Matter and public art.
“I hope we can work together to make this project happen, and when we do, I’ll gladly bring a paint brush and join the effort.”Indya Kincannon, mayor, City of Knoxville
The city stated in a release that it has received petitions signed by residents both for and against the project and that many people have reached out saying they want to see a Black Lives Matter painting, but on another city street. The city concluded it is committed to exploring additional options.
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