Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced Sunday (December 5) his plans to removal the pedestal the enormous statue of Robert E. Lee once stood in Richmond.
The move comes months after removing the statue depicting the Confederate leader on horseback and marks a change in previously-announced plans from September when Northam said the 40-foot-tall pedestal would stay put.
The pedestal also comes just weeks before Northam leaves office and his Republican successor Glenn Youngkin takes the helm.
"It was important to us that we do it now and before we leave office," Northam's spokesperson Alena Yarmosky told NBC News.
The removal will specifically includes hauling the massive graffiti-covered pedestal out of a grassy traffic circle and transfer ownership of that land to the city of Richmond.
Transferring ownership of the land to local control, Yarmosky said, will help avoid logistical nightmares when it comes to maintenance and security of the area. The land was originally deeded to the commonwealth back in the 19th century.
Efforts to removal the pedestal are scheduled to begin Monday (December 6) and expected to wrap up by December 31, according to a news release.
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