MILTON-FREEWATER - The city accepted a gift Monday night of a U.S. flag that American troops flew in the face of the enemy on the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attack.

Umatilla-Morrow Circuit Court judges Dan Hill and Jeff Wallace presented the flag to the City Council. Hill recently returned from serving as a judge advocate general in Afghanistan, and Wallace is in the U.S. Air Force Reserves.

The officers, NCOs and soldiers of the 41st Brigade Combat Team at Camp Phoenix, Afghanistan, flew the flag on Sept. 11, 2006, specifically in honor of the citizens of Milton-Freewater.

"We were all just honored and touched," Assistant City Manager Linda Hall said.

The city could display the flag, but perhaps not fly it in order to preserve it.

In city business, the council unanimously agreed to begin work to vacate city-owned property on a portion of Northwest Seventh Avenue.

The Milton-Freewater School Board made a request for the property because it abuts property at the Freewater School. The council unanimously agreed to vacate the property rather than put the school board through a lengthy process of gathering signatures for neighboring property owners.

Now, the city will survey the site, stake the area and post that the city will vacate it. Then it will advertise for and hold a public hearing on the matter. That hearing hasn't been set.

The council also agreed to waive the fee for these proceedings for the school board.

In other business:

?The council tabled a resolution to amend rental rates for the community building. T

?City Councilman Brad Humbert took his oath of office prior to the regular meeting.

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