Marine battles for right to fly American flag

A Marine who recently returned from Iraq says he's 'disgusted' that he has to get a permit to fly an American flag outside his home in Hypoluxo, Fla.

Gregory Schaffer will likely get to keep flying an American flag in his front yard after all.

The U.S. Marine, who recently returned from a tour of duty in Iraq, was slapped with a citation days after hoisting up Old Glory outside the house he rents in Hypoluxo, Fla., WPTV-TV reported.

An anonymous neighbor apparently complained to town officials. In Hypoluxo, a flag pole is considered a structure and for that, one needs a permit — which Schaffer didn't have.

"It's sad. It's sad that we have to go through that just to fly a flag," Schaffer, 24, told WPTV.

"It's disgusting that anybody should have to go through that. I fought for the flag, now I'm paying for the flag," said Schaffer.

He said the permit could cost nearly $1,000.

Tim Large, the town's building department official, said the issue has nothing to do with the flag itself.

"Well, he can fly his flag, the issue is that he has to get a building permit," Large told WPTV.

Large said he would try to work with Schaffer to make sure he can continue to fly his flag, the TV station reported.

Large didn't immediately return a phone call to MSN News but the town's mayor, Ken Schultz, said he expects the issue to be resolved next week.

"I understand people are coming forward to help with the permitting," he told MSN News on Thursday.

Schultz said because Schaffer is renting, the owner of the property will be the one applying for the permit.

"The problem is not with flying the flag, it's having the pole permitted so that it’s a safe structure. I've had one in front of my house for years," Schultz said.

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