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Bills aim to restore funding for Ind. battle flags

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Two Indiana lawmakers are hoping to preserve the Civil War battle flags that are a part of the state's history.

Republican Sen. Allen Paul of Richmond has authored a bill that would set aside $500,000 from the state's general fund to conserve some of Indiana's 400 flags. Republican Sen. Jim Merritt of Indianapolis has introduced legislation to create a fund for the flag preservation money.

The state's battle flags are currently stored in a climate-controlled vault at the Indiana War Memorial. Executive Director Stewart Goodwin says the textiles deteriorate with age, and eventually the flags will reach a point when they can no longer be salvaged.

Conservation can cost thousands of dollars per flag and take up to a year.

A hearing on Paul's bill is scheduled Tuesday.