The city of Gig Harbor is resuming its Nativity debate in the new year, this time at a parks commission meeting.
The advisory body will hold a public hearing Jan. 4 on placing holiday-themed displays on city-owned land.
The commission will discuss whether to recommend the City Council implement a permit process to allow private displays on public land, or whether the displays should be allowed at all.
The discussion comes after city officials asked a resident not put up a private Nativity display this year next to the city Christmas tree in Donkey Creek Park.
Previously the Nativity scene had been allowed next to the tree, which historically is lit in the Skansie Brothers Park along the waterfront.
The city made its request after receiving legal threats from a Wisconsin-based group advocating for a separation of church and state. The group argued the city didn’t have a process for someone to apply to put up a display, giving the appearance the private Nativity scene was publicly sanctioned.
Citizens unable to attend the public hearing can email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org by Jan. 3. Written comments will not be accepted after 5 p.m. All written comments will be provided to the commission Jan. 4.
Contact Katrina Knutson with any questions at knutsonk@cityofgigharbor. net or 253-853-8253.
The public hearing on placing holiday-themed displays on city-owned land will be at 5:30 p.m. Jan. 4 in the Community Rooms at Gig Harbor City Hall, 3510 Grandview St.