Veteran facing condo fines for flying American Flag - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Veteran facing condo fines for flying American Flag

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An Air Force veteran said he’s facing condo fines for flying the American Flag in the front of his unit instead of the back. (WFSB) An Air Force veteran said he’s facing condo fines for flying the American Flag in the front of his unit instead of the back. (WFSB)
JEWETT CITY, CT (WFSB) -

An Air Force veteran said he’s facing condo fines for flying the American Flag in the front of his unit, and not in the back where it is approved.

All Ronald Gebler wants to do is fly the flag in front of his Jewett City condo, and he said he did have approval from the previous condo association.

"They said I could fly my flag sideways to my house. So when I put it back up this spring I put it out this way and within two days I had a letter saying you have to take down your flag, which I did,” Gebler said.

Now the new leaders of the condo association told Gebler he can fly the flag in the back of his home, facing the woods.

They said if he continues flying the flag in the front, they will fine him.

“I don't know, it's hard to explain. You know what I mean being a veteran I like to display my flag proudly,” Gebler said.

Eyewitness News spoke to the company that manages the property, and the spokesman said it is all up to the association to make the bylaws.

The association board members must adhere to all state and federal laws.

According to the American Flag Act of 2005, "no condo, co-op, or homeowner association can restrict its owners from displaying the U.S. flag on their property.”

But there are exceptions. Associations are permitted to place reasonable restrictions on the time, place, and manner of the display to protect a "substantial" interest of the association.

The state law “does not explicitly authorize condominium unit owners to display a flag on or near their unit or on the common elements."

Gebler said even though the association leaders approved him flying the flag in the back, he’d rather see it fly proudly in the front.

Association President Lisa Dugas did not respond to calls made or messages left by Eyewitness News.

"You know when you come home at night and you see that flag flying, it gives you a good feeling, me anyway. I don't know about anybody else,” Gebler said.

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