Shakeup Underway in Civil Rights Group

After a tumultuous year for a local civil rights organization, a shakeup is underway.

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference presented its new leaders at a press conference Wednesday morning in Tallahassee. There are now two local organizations operating under the SCLC banner and the new board says what's at issue is the legitimacy of the inter-city council.

The national board has named longtime member Reverend Joseph Wright chapter president and Reverend Henry Steele vice president. The election comes on the heels of a September suspension for the local chapter.

The national SCLC is accusing the chapter of operating without authorization from the board of directors and for violating the election process. The new officers now say they are the official local representative of the SCLC and the national organization has plans to dismiss the inter- city council.

There were also allegations that the chapter mismanaged funds for the 50th anniversary celebration of the Tallahassee bus boycott, but the organization cleared the chapter of that allegation in October.

Reverend William Foutz, president of the inter-city council says his organization is legitimate and has no plans to merge with the local chapter of the local chapter of SCLC.

The newly appointed board has 90 days to come into compliance with national regulations.