Baltimore council set to review bill on Columbus Day change

BALTIMORE (AP) — Baltimore's city council president is expected to introduce a bill Monday that would officially change the name of Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples’ Day in Maryland's largest city.

A spokeswoman for President Brandon Scott said he expects the bill, which is cosponsored by Councilman John T. Bullock, will pass, The Baltimore Sun reported.

A similar motion was unsuccessful in 2016, but the second attempt comes as protestors around the world have called for institutions to reexamine their ties to leaders, military officers and other such historical figures who some say are symbols of racism. And for years, Native American advocates have pressed states to change the holiday over concerns that Columbus spurred centuries of genocide against indigenous populations in the Americas.

In Baltimore, a group of protesters toppled a statue of the Italian explorer and tossed it into the city's Inner Harbor this summer.

Baltimore would join nearby communities, such as Howard, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties, as well as those around the country, in rededicating the holiday, The Sun reported.

Bullock said that if the full council doesn’t pass the bill by Oct. 12, he hopes it will be done by next October.