Controversial Julian crosses may have found new home - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Controversial Julian crosses may have found new home

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JULIAN (CNS) - A possible solution has been found to a controversial plan by Caltrans to remove three crosses that have stood for decades a few yards from state Route 79 near Julian, the state agency announced Wednesday.

After receiving a citizen's complaint that the crosses were on public property, Caltrans officials determined they were erected without permits and planned to remove them. That led to objections by supporters of the crosses who want them to stay.

Mountain residents congregate for Easter Sunday services beside the crosses, which are located near the entrance to a vista point that provides sweeping views of foothills that lead to the desert floor.

Catherine Bruce-Johnson of Caltrans said Pastor Rick Hill has offered to have the crosses relocated to the property of his Hillside Community Church.

"We are grateful that Pastor Hill stepped forward and made the offer," Bruce-Johnson said. "The next step will be for the pastor and his congregation to select the site and take ownership within the next month."

She said Caltrans has been in communication with area churches and the Julian Chamber of Commerce in recent weeks in an effort to find the crosses a more appropriate home.

Crosses on public property has been a source of controversy for years in San Diego County. Despite numerous lawsuits and court rulings, large and highly visible crosses remain standing on Mount Soledad in La Jolla and Mount Helix near La Mesa.

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