HYPOLUXO, Fla. (CBS Tampa) — Hypoluxo town officials tell a Marine to take down the American flag from his front yard because it’s a code violation.

WPTV reports that an anonymous neighbor filed a complaint after 24-year-old Iraq War veteran Gregory Schaffer installed a flag pole in his front yard.

“It’s sad. It’s sad that we have to go through that just to fly a flag,” Schaffer told WPTV.

Hypoluxo officials defend their decision, saying it has nothing to do with the American flag.

“He can fly his flag,” Tim Large, official with the Hypoluxo Building Department, told WFLX-TV. “The issue is that he has to get a building permit.”

Since Schaffer is renting the house, he says he would need to spend $1,000 for a third party contractor to apply for the permit.

The Marine has 30 days to comply with the code and take down the flag pole.

“I would love to see the guy be able to do this,” Large told WFLX. “To me, it’s not personal. It’s strictly my job.”

Schaffer doesn’t blame the neighbor who complained.

“I respect their right to be able to file a complaint and handle things the way they did,” Schaffer told WPTV. “Do I respect what they did? No. I respect their ability to do so.”


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