Council Approves Sign Law Change in Support of Free Speech

On Tuesday, January 24th, the County Council voted 7-2 to change the sign ordinance law as it relates to "limited duration signs." Currently the law states that a Limited Duration Sign is a non-permanent sign displayed on either private property or in the public right-of-way. A limited duration sign requires a sign permit. The permit is valid for one year, but may be renewed. Limited duration signs located in the public right-of-way are subject to strict safety standards and may only be displayed on weekends or for 14 consecutive days during any six month period. Each sign must not exceed 5 square feet in area or be mounted more than 30 inches above the ground. An applicant is limited to 4 signs per business location. Limited duration signs must not be used in place of permanent signs.

The new law, once enacted, states that limited duration signs on private property will no longer be subject to a permit requirement. This means that essentially a "for sale" sign that is on private property could remain there for an indefinite period of time without a permit.