“Digital billboards coming to Gainesville; deal came after Fairway threatened lawsuit”

“Digital billboards coming to Gainesville; deal came after Fairway threatened lawsuit”

Photo: Scott Rogers, Gainsville Times

“Gainesville officials have reached a compromise to allow digital billboards within the city limits after nearly three years of negotiations and threats of a lawsuit.

Close to 70 billboards are located in Gainesville, with the vast majority owned by Fairway Outdoor Advertising.

Fairway owns an additional 32 billboards across Hall County, where digital billboards are allowed…

Limits on brightness, transition time between advertisements and the distance between billboards were major considerations for city officials.

City officials also wanted to reduce the number of billboards altogether…

Fairway had previously submitted 15 applications for permits to convert existing “static” billboards into digital displays, all of which were denied.

Fairway then threatened to file a lawsuit.

‘We had been negotiating for quite some time,’ City Manager Bryan Lackey said. ‘I thought things were progressing well. Before they dropped the threat of litigation, they didn’t want any restrictions on timing.’

City officials were willing to give Fairway several years to make the conversions…

The agreement, which City Council approved this week, requires that Fairway must remove two existing billboards for every digital billboard it converts within the first two years.

That means, according to the terms obtained by The Times, that Fairway will remove 14 “static” billboards and convert another seven to digital displays.

After the second year, Fairway has an indefinite amount of time to remove 18 existing billboards and convert just five.

The digital displays cannot exceed 300 square feet in size and their height is limited to 35 feet; must use brick or stone around base poles to a height of 10 feet to improve aesthetic; and must be placed on or within 50 feet of an existing spot.

Moreover, displays must last at least 10 seconds and the transition between messages can be no more than two seconds. There can be no flashing or scrolling advertisements, and there are limits on brightness, as well…”

— Joshua Silavent, Gainesville Times

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Legal: In Kenya, county “pulls down billboards of firms that illegally fell or poison trees”

Legal: In Kenya, county “pulls down billboards of firms that illegally fell or poison trees”

Photo: Collins Langat, The Star, Kenya
“The county says it will pull down billboards owned by at least five advertising firms, which it says are notorious for illegally felling trees on major roads. It plans to start this week.

Some trees even have been poisoned by toxic chemicals poured on the soil, county officials said…

The county said it will start pulling down all board standing near felled trees to ‘discipline’ companies for the illegal act.

‘This can start anytime. We cannot tolerate this,’ Agriculture executive Danvas Makori said.

‘We are going to arrest anybody cutting down trees for billboards and bring down those billboards. We’re not going to permit billboards if it means a tree or even a branch has to be cut off to put up a billboard,” he said…

‘They are now pouring chemicals under trees and after a short time, trees start withering and die. This is a new trick’ he said.

Agriculture committee chairman John Mwangi called the tree felling regrettable and said he would demand a comprehensive report.

He said the Finance sector is auditing to establish the number of billboards that are not permitted and for which companies have not paid taxes.

Ex-Governor Evans Kidero issued a similar caution following rampant felling of trees. He ordered the removal of billboards interfering with trees.’

— Julius Otieno,The Star, Kenya

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Legal: Illegal billboards are simply removed in Pakistan

Legal: Illegal billboards are simply removed in Pakistan

Photo: Pakastan Today

“National Highways Authority (NHA) and district administration on Tuesday jointly started a drive against illegal billboards around motorway near Charsadda interchange and pulled them down.

In the presence law enforcement personnel, the staff of NHA and the district administration led by Charsadda Assistant Commissioner Talat Fahad used heavy machinery to pull down the illegal billboards, raised around the Charsadda interchange and retrieved millions worth of government land from the occupants.

Talking to media, the AC said that no one would be allowed to take law into his own hands and the operation against illegal structures would continue indiscriminately…”

— Pakistan Today

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“Milton mulls ‘wind sign’ amendment”

“Milton mulls ‘wind sign’ amendment”

Photo: Wiki Commons

“City staffers have examined a law related to business signage, and are considering amending the ordinance to allow businesses to display certain types of signs for an extended period.

The signs in question are wind signs — sometimes known as feather, teardrop or blade flags — which usually comprise a pole and a suspended sign made of flexible material fastened in such a manner as to move in the wind, according to city ordinance 16-3.

Under the current ordinance, wind signs are known as “grand opening wind signs,” as they were only permitted for use from the date of business license issuance for a period not exceeding 30 consecutive days. The temporary permit for these signs is non-renewable.

‘A number of months ago, we had a business owner… put up a couple of wind signs on the property that she leases,’ Planning Director Randy Jorgenson said of how the item was brought to the city’s attention. ‘We allowed wind signs to exist during a grand opening … following that period, approached her to have the signs taken down and she indicated that was one of the few methods of advertising that … would get the attention of the traveling public on Highway 90.’

The Milton Planning Board reviewed the ordinance related to wind signs and recommended approving the addition and deduction of certain language to the Unified Development Code.

Currently, businesses are limited to two signs per street frontage, and a business in a multi-tenant complex is limited to one sign.

Under the projected new ordinance, businesses would be permitted to put up wind signs during four different periods of 30 consecutive days. The $10 permit would be renewable for three more 30-day periods during the first year, and four 30-day periods each subsequent calendar year, allowing businesses to display wind signs a total of 120 days per year.

Wind signs are prohibited outside C1, C2, C3 and SSC-RC zoning districts within Milton city limits. In multi-tenant complexes, the total number of wind signs displayed at a single time must not exceed four.

‘Signage … serves a useful purpose. It provides information to the traveling public,’ Jorgenson said. ‘The other side of that is … signs, if they are proliferated, create a lot of what is commonly called visual clutter. You don’t see what a community consists of for the signs that you’re looking at.

And they can constitute even a public safety hazard, in that they attract the driver’s attention away from what they should be paying attention to.’

While the city was exploring the ordinance change, they didn’t enforce the current ordinance.

According to Jorgenson, the City Council will vote on the item at the next meeting.”

— Alicia Adams,Santa Rosa Press Gazette

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Legal: Campaign Signs “Sign controversy brewing on Holiday Isle”

Legal: Campaign Signs “Sign controversy brewing on Holiday Isle”

Photo: NWF Daily News

“Two residents of Holiday Isle in Destin were cited by the neighborhood’s Holiday Isle Improvement Association this week for violating the organization’s sign codes, but they believe the citations could potentially be politically motivated.

Alan Osborne and Robyn Wehunt both have had posted campaign signs promoting candidates in the past without any issues.

However, both received citations from the Holiday Isle Improvement Association within hours of posting signs promoting charter boat Capt. Gary Jarvis’ campaign for mayor. Jarvis’ opponent in the race is current Mayor Scott Fischer, the director of the Holiday Isle Improvement Association’s board of directors.

‘Selective enforcement is the first step to control a government in socialism,’ said Osborne. ‘When it comes to rules, they either apply to everybody or nobody when your job is to represent the people.’

Wehunt agreed to have a ‘Captain Gary Jarvis for Mayor of Destin’ sign posted in her front yard after a member of Jarvis’ campaign committee asked her permission.

‘I left to pick up my daughter from school and by the time I came home, I found a citation on my front door,’ Wehunt said.

Wehunt and Osbourne both said they have posted Trump signs in their yards in the past without being cited.

The signage rules and regulations for Holiday Isle are posted on the improvement association’s website and state that signs are prohibited in the right of ways, and only ‘For Rent’ or ‘For Sale’ signs shorter than four feet tall and two feet square in any given area are allowed.

Throughout the neighborhood, ‘Scott Fischer Mayor’ signs that include the phrase ‘preserving the heritage of Destin’ are displayed prominently on personal vehicles in driveways. The magnetic signs are within HOA code, according to Fischer, who said that he hasn’t attended any association meetings or read any emails regarding association issues and is not in any position to comment due to the upcoming election…”

— Maddie Rowley, NWF Daily News

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