Foundation Threatens to Sue Wisconsin Rapids Over Nativity Display

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It's not uncommon to see holiday decorations in our downtown cities this time of year. But one local group is threatening to sue the city of Wisconsin Rapids if they don't take down a nativity scene on city property.

Wisconsin Rapids has displayed a nativity scene on city property for the past six years with no complaints until this year.

The Madison-based Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter to the city threatening to sue them if they don't take down this nativity located right next to the city's courthouse.

The foundation's attorney tells Newschannel 7 they received more than one complaint from members who live in Wisconsin Rapids who told her they are offended the display is on public property.

"I think there are more appropriate places for a nativity scene to be displayed during this holiday season. There are ample private grounds, church grounds on which nativity scenes can be displayed," said Rebecca Kratz, Freedom From Religion Attorney.

But the city's attorney says they do not believe it infringes on anyone's constitutional rights, and will keep the display as-is.

"This is how the display has been for the last six years and as I said, I think we've done everything correctly and the nativity will remain as-is," said Sue Schill, Wisconsin Rapids city attorney.

It costs the city more than $1,000 to put up the display each year. The attorney says comes from local tax payer dollars.