Eureka will discontinue prayer breakfasts as part of a settlement stemming from a 2013 lawsuit seeking the separation of church and local government.
The Times-Standard reports
that, in addition to no longer sponsoring or endorsing the prayer breakfasts (which Mayor Frank Jager conducted specifically
in his capacity as mayor), the city will pay $16,500 to cover legal costs incurred during the lawsuit.
When the lawsuit was filed, Jager told the Journal
, "If they want to sue us, fine, we'll take them on."
Commenting on the settlement, Jager told the Times-Standard
he would have preferred the city go to court over the lawsuit, but that "the council wanted to get it over with and not have this thing drag on."
The lawsuit also sought to stop invocations before city council meetings (a practice that has been ruled constitutional
by the Supreme Court) but was denied
by a local judge. Attorney Peter Martin, who brought the lawsuit, says he will appeal that decision.