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The following regulations shall apply to the display of all signs in the City:
A. "Sign" shall include structural supports, poles, cabinets and all portions of the sign.
B. No sign shall be erected unless it is in compliance with the regulations of this chapter.
C. Signs must be constructed in compliance with any applicable regulations of the City's Building Code and any applicable State building and fire codes. Furthermore, no person may engage in the business of erecting, altering, relocating, or maintaining signs without a valid City of Elyria contractor's license and all required State and Federal licenses.
D. All signs shall be properly maintained. Exposed surfaces shall be clean and painted, if paint is required. Defective parts shall be replaced. The Building Inspector shall have the right to order the repair or removal of any sign which is defective, damaged or substantially deteriorated. The property owner, agent, or the person having the beneficial use of the premises shall be responsible for all costs for such repair or removal.
E. Any abandoned sign constitutes a public nuisance and such sign shall be taken down and removed by the owner, agent or person having the beneficial use of the premises upon which such sign is found. Such sign shall be removed within ten (10) days after written notice from the Building Inspector or the sign may be removed by the Building Inspector or his or her authorized representative and the costs shall be charged to the owner, agent or person having the beneficial use of the premises on which such sign is found.
F. Any sign, retractable canopy or awning which advertises a business no longer being conducted or a product no longer being sold on the premises to which the sign relates constitutes a public nuisance and such sign shall be taken down and removed by the owner, agent or person having the beneficial use of the premises upon which such sign is found. Such sign shall be removed within ten (10) days after written notice from the Building Inspector or the sign may be removed by the Building Inspector or his or her authorized representative and the costs shall be charged to the owner, agent or person having the beneficial use of the premises on which such sign is found.
G. No sign shall obstruct or interfere with traffic or traffic visibility, or resemble or imitate signs or signals erected by the City or other governmental agency for the regulation of traffic or parking.
H. Signs may be illuminated, except temporary signs, by either external or internal sources of light except where otherwise prohibited in this chapter. However, no illuminated sign shall be permitted, any part of which flashes on or off sequentially or displays changing degrees of intensity (this does not apply holiday, religious or automatic changeable copy signs or electronic message displays). This regulation applies to signs located outside buildings, and to window signs inside buildings which are meant to be seen from the outside.
I. No sign, whether freestanding, ground mounted or attached to a building or other structure, may project over any public street, sidewalk or other public right-of-way, except as expressly permitted in this chapter.
J. Any sign which is permanently mounted shall bear, in a permanent position, a clearly legible identification stating the name and address of the owner of the sign, and the person, firm or corporation responsible for its construction, and the date of erection.
K. No sign, with the exception of governmental signs, shall be placed, displayed or erected in the public right-of-way or on public property without written approval from the Safety-Service Director.
L. No snipe signs shall be placed, erected or displayed within the City.
M. No light source for illuminated signs shall be of such brightness as to constitute a hazard to pedestrian or vehicular traffic.
N. Unless otherwise specified by this chapter, any sign herein allowed may use manual or automatic changeable copy.
O. Clearance of overhead utilities shall be in conformance with the National Electrical Code and all local utility standards.
P. Window signs are permitted, provided that the window sign is located in a building where a commercial or industrial use is permitted as a principal use. No window sign shall advertise products or services not provided or for sale on the premises except non-profit and civic functions and political candidates.
Q. No sign shall be erected or placed on any property without the consent of the owner.
R. No sign shall be placed where it blocks or impedes sight lines for any person, pedestrian or operator of a vehicle on a public right-of-way, driveway or sidewalk.
S. No sign shall imitate or resemble official traffic or governmental signs or signals.
T. No sign shall be erected so as to have less than eight (8) feet of vertical clearance between such sign and the public sidewalk or public right-of-way.
U. Electronic message display/electronic message centers.
1. Operational limitations: Such displays shall be limited to static displays, messages that appear or disappear from the displays through dissolve, fade, travel or scroll modes, or similar transitions and frame effects that have text, animated graphics or images that appear to move or change in size, or be revealed sequentially rather than all at once.
2. Zoning district permitted: All zoning districts, except residential districts which will require a Conditional Use Permit.
a. Setbacks: A minimum of one hundred (100) feet shall be provided from the leading edge of the sign to a property zoned residential. A minimum of ten (10) feet from the leading edge of the sign to any right-of-way. The sign must comply with all other setbacks for the zoning district in which the sign is located.
b. Setback from other electronic message signs: Electronic message signs must be separated from other electronic message signs by at least thirty-five (35) feet.
c. Minimum time display.
1. Five (5) seconds minimum (non-residentially zoned property).
2. Thirty (30) seconds minimum (residentially zoned property).
d. Color: No white, ivory or yellow backgrounds.
e. Brightness: Shall not impose a hazard to pedestrian or vehicular traffic nor a nuisance to surrounding residential properties.
f. Flashing, animation and video are prohibited.
(Ord. 2002-127. Passed 7-1-02; Ord. 2009-168. Passed 8-3-09.)