Tennessee’s House of Representatives, which is controlled by a Republican majority, reportedly retaliated against the city of Memphis for removing two Confederate statues, reports the Huffington Post. The move comes in the form of $250,000 being held back that was to be used to help Memphis celebrate its upcoming bicentennial celebration in 2019. According to the HuffPost, Democrats in the House condemned the measure, which came in the form of a last-minute amendment to an appropriations bill. State Rep. Antonio Parkinson, a Democrat, said the amendment was the most “vile, racist” measure he had seen, while Rep. Raumesh Akbari, also a Democrat, called it “un-Christian.” Said Akbari, “The amendment and the explanation is hateful.” Memphis itself had been legally blocked from removing the statues of Confederate general and Ku Klux Klan leader Nathan Bedford Forrest and Confederate president Jefferson Davis from two public parks, according to the Commercial Appeal. But in December, the city council voted unanimously to sell the park to a local nonprofit, for a reported $1,000 each. That evening, the nonprofit took down the monuments. Some people in the majority-Black city had been voicing their discomfort with the lingering reminders of the Confederacy for more than a decade. Tennessee House Republicans strongly opposed removing the statues, however, and have called for an investigation into the legality of the sale of the parks. “The law was very clear, and they got smart lawyers to figure out how to wiggle around the law,” state Rep. Gerald McCormick (R) told Nashville Public Radio, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland (D) said on social media that officials “followed the state law down to the letter of it.” Ahead of the city’s 200th anniversary in May 2019, Memphis government officials have been working on a plan that Strickland calls “Memphis 3.0.” According to the project’s website, organizers organizers aim to develop “great neighborhoods” and “walkable/bikeable communities connected by effective transportation options,” among other goals. “While we would have appreciated the additional funding, the ongoing planning for the joint city-county bicentennial will continue unchanged,” Strickland said. A Memphis resident has set up a GoFundMe page to help recoup the $250,000. At press time, the page had raised about $60,000 of its $250,000 goal.