Controversial Waterbury Columbus statue to stay in front of City Hall

New Haven

Conn. (WTNH) — While politicians headlined Tuesday’s ballots, there were referendums on the ballot in a number of Connecticut communities. In Waterbury, the future of the city’s Christopher Columbus statue was on the ballot.

Wednesday, voters decided the statue that caused so much controversy over the summer will stay in its place at Waterbury City Hall.

RELATED: Referendums on the ballot in cities across CT Election Day 2020

Mayor Neil O’Leary chose to let the folks of the Brass City decide its fate by holding a city-wide referendum. The question: “Shall the Christopher Columbus statue remain in its current location?”

Unlike New Haven, Hartford, and New London, Waterbury has not removed its statue of Italian explorer Christopher Columbus.

Columbus has long been celebrated for discovering America, but many see him as a symbol of indigenous genocide.

Earlier this year, protesters from the Black Lives Matter across the country movement demanded the removal of the statue in the nation’s cities, including in many cities in Connecticut.

RELATED: Waterbury Board of Aldermen votes to put future of decapitated Columbus statue in hands of voters in November

On July 4th, a vandal beheaded the Waterbury Columbus statue with a hammer. Police say they caught a New York man, Brandon Ambrose, trying the sell the nose.

The statue is currently being restored. If voters decide to remove the statue from City Hall, the restored statue will be relocated to a private location.

According to Wikipedia, 21.6% of Waterbury residents claim Italian heritage.

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