HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. - The rainbow flag will not fly above Huntington Beach City Hall during Pride Month this year after the City Council voted 4-3 in support of a proposal to remove it. The flag has flown over City Hall during Pride Month since 2021.
The proposal was introduced by newly-elected Councilmember Pat Burns, who said the move is not discriminatory, but merely an attempt to limit the flags flying on city property to U.S., State, County, City and POW flags, with occasional allowances for branches of the military.
"How about if I don’t agree with the military," asked several Huntington Beach residents voicing their concerns to FOX 11. Particularly concerned are the owners of LGBTQ friendly businesses in the city, who explain that despite the council’s insistence that the move is not discriminatory, it will be perceived as such and affect tourism in a city that receives millions of visitors from around the world.
Criticism is already piling up, from ally groups to the Orange County Anti-Defamation League and more.
Before the vote Monday night, several residents asked about other flags flying over City Hall, such as the Olympic flag. Huntington Beach has launched a bit to host the surfing competitions in the upcoming 2028 Olympic Games. Under the new proposal, the City Council would have to vote to allow the Olympic flag on city properties at the time.
Hungtingon Beach City officials not available to answer FOX 11's questions.