New Ross law tweaked to set minimum distance from road for temporary signs
Ross commissioners have tweaked a new law that prohibits placing signs in public rights-of-way to define the minimum distance from the curb they can be erected.
In February the board voted unanimously to change the township’s zoning to outlaw the signs, which often are used to advertise political candidates, shows and community events.
The original measure that was approved classified the public right-of-way as the strip along a road between the curb and utility poles. But it did not define what the width of that space should be.
On Monday, the board agreed to require signs that are placed on public property be at least 3-feet from the curb or roadway.
Any sign placed inside the 3-foot area designated by the township will be removed by municipal employees. Repeat offenders will receive a warning and could face a fine of up to $300 for failing to adhere to the rules.
Officials warned that even if signs are place past 3-feet from the curb, they might still be illegal.
“Once you get past the 3-feet, the land is owned by somebody,” said Commissioner President Steve Korbel. “I advise people to be very careful about trespassing on private property to put up a sign.”
The law does not put any restrictions on placing signs on private property with permission of the owner.
The ordinance was enacted in response to complaints form residents who felt the proliferation of the temporary signs along township roads is an eyesore.
Township officials noted the law already was unanimously approved as a “pending ordinance,” which means even though some of the details of the zoning change still need to be worked out, the revision to the law took effect immediately.
Board members said the ordinance was purposely approved so it could be used in time to regulate the placement of political signs in public spaces for the May 21 primary.
A previous attempt to address the problem involved requiring people to pay a $100 deposit that would be refunded once the sign has been removed.
Officials said the deposit did little to reduce the number of signs placed and forgotten along the road.
Tony LaRussa is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tony at 724-772-6368, [email protected] or via Twitter .