Western New Jersey

Woman, 75, facing possible eviction for displaying US flags

Woman, 75, facing possible eviction for displaying US flags

PHILLIPSBURG, N.J. - A Warren County, N.J., woman is making national news because she was told she can't display her flags on her balcony.

Punished for being patriotic.

Sound absurd? Not to 75 year old Dawn Paulus.

"I will get an eviction notice it's possible," Paulus said.

She said the notice is for hanging three American flags from her 6th floor balcony at the Housing Authority owned John F O'Donnell Apartments on South Main Street in Phillipsburg.

"It's my constitutional right and my freedom to hang these flags," Paulus said.

Ex-Director of the Phillipsburg Housing Authority Paul Rummerfield said this isn't an issue about freedom, the flag or constitutional rights, but instead Dawn's lease.

"Fact is it's hung from the balcony.. and the lease says nothing can be hung," said Rummersfield.

In the lease agreement given to all Housing Authority tenants, it clearly states nothing can hung from balcony.

Rummerfield calls it a safety issue.

"How about the flower pot of the hanging basket, if something fell we would not do enough to protect them," Rummersfield said.

Dawn can display her flag from a window or even from the balcony, it just can't be hanging.

This story has garnered national attention. Rummerfield said he's been getting threatening calls and e-mails.

As for Dawn, even she agrees she'll more than likely have to take the flag down.

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