Schwarzenegger apologizes for move to cover flag mural

SACRAMENTO — Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is apologizing for a decision by Caltrans to paint over a giant American flag mural on the side of a Northern California freeway.

The 35-foot long flag was painted on a concrete slab near Interstate 680 in Sunol by two men about two weeks after the 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington.

Even though the mural had been in clear view of commuters for nearly nine years, a Caltrans spokesman says it wasn't until last month that someone in the agency asked if the flag was on state property.

Spokesman Allyn Amsk says when it was determined the mural was on state property, it was covered up with grey paint Wednesday morning.

In a statement released Friday, Schwarzenegger extended his "apologies to the artists whose mural inspired drivers along 680 for over eight and a half years."

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.