(a)   Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, billboards shall be permitted as an accessory use in any commercial or industrial district fronting U.S. 131 and U.S. 10 as delineated in the 2005 Community Comprehensive Plan, Drawing C Existing Land Use, with the exception of the length of Business U.S. 131 north of the State Police Post extending north to the City Limits.
   (b)   Definitions.
      (1)   "Billboard" shall mean a sign structure designed, intended or used for advertising an establishment, merchandise, event, service or entertainment which is not sold, produced, manufactured, performed or furnished upon the property where the sign is physically located.  Such a billboard may also be known as off-premise sign; however, it is not intended to be for directional signs giving simple vehicular or pedestrian directions to a location.  Any billboard is also subject to compliance with the 1972 Billboard Act and the limitation on expressway signs expressed therein, as well as any amendments thereto.
      (2)   "On Premise" signs shall mean a sign or structure that is designed, intended or used for advertising an establishment, merchandise, event, service or entertainment which is sold on the property where the sign is actually or physically located.
   (c)   Location Standards.
      (1)   No billboard shall be closed than:
         A.   1,000 feet from any other billboard.
         B.   300 feet from any other free standing, on-premise sign oriented to the roadway traffic;
         C.   200 feet if not illuminated or 300 feet if illuminated from the property line of any single family residence not on the same property or under the same ownership and control as the owner of the property where the billboard is physically constructed.
      (2)   Along U.S. 131 and U.S. 10, a billboard shall have a minimum setback of at least 60 feet from the center of the roadway.
      (3)   Billboards may only be placed on these properties with the express, written consent of the lawful owner of the property, as evidenced by a lease between the property owner and billboard vendor.
      (4)   All right-of-way measurements shall be made from the nearest upright support/pole of the billboard structure.
   (d)   Sizing Standards.
      (1)    Billboards may be constructed to a maximum size of 300 square feet per face on for US 10 or US 131.  For that portion of Business US 131 South of the State Police Post extending south to the city limits the maximum size shall be 200 square feet per face.
      (2)   All billboards shall be constructed no lower than 15 feet from the ground. No billboard shall have an overall maximum height of more than 35 feet.
      (3)   Appendages or irregularly shaped sign extensions, not exceeding ten percent of the overall sign area or 30 square feet in length may extend beyond the perimeter of the sign panel.
   (e)   Billboard Lighting.
      (1)   Billboards that include tri-vision and LED displays, or are T-type, double-faced or V-tape structures that have only one face visible to traffic proceeding from a given direction on a street or highway shall be considered as one billboard.
      (2)   Message changes on any tri-vision or LED billboard shall not occur less than seven seconds apart.  Said messages and lighting patterns shall not be programmed as to in any way mimic traffic control or public safety devices or lighting.
      (3)   Lighting or illumination of a sign shall be directly on the sign structure, mounted in a downward-shining direction and such lights shall not be visible to motorists on any roadway or residence and shall not create any glare onto adjacent properties or the roadway.  Billboards that are lit and within 1,000 feet of residence of any type, shall have a lighting timer enabled to remain unlit from 12 a.m. until 6:00 a.m.
      (4)   Except for multiple-vision, tri-vision or LED signs, no signs shall use flashing, oscillating, rotating, or intermittent lights, mimic traffic control, public safety devices, or lighting.
      (5)   Billboards containing LED signs or a changeable nature shall make themselves available for any public emergency (such as an Amber Alert or road closures) at the request of a City or Emergency  Management Official requesting said service for not more than a 12-hour period.  Should the emergency require a longer exposure time and the municipality and billboard owner agree to same, it may be extended upon their agreement.
   (f)   Code Compliance, Maintenance, Permitting.
      (1)   Billboards shall be constructed and maintained to conform to all local and national building and electric codes and remain in compliance throughout their existence.  Billboards shall be constructed to withstand all wind and vibration forces, which can normally and reasonably be expected to occur in the vicinity.  A billboard must be maintained to assure proper alignment of structure, continued structural soundness and continued readability of message.  No billboard shall extend over the roof of any adjacent structure or a public sidewalk, walkway or trail system.
      (2)   A billboard shall be maintained with the scope of all applicable coding authorities and the Michigan Highway Advertising Act (MCL 252.301, et. seq.).  A billboard shall also comply with all applicable provisions of the Act and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, as amended.
      (3)   Billboards shall require the obtaining of a building permit and payment of the applicable billboard fee as established by City Council. All billboards shall be routinely inspected by the Zoning Administrator and/or the Department of Public Works, Superintendent to insure compliance with this chapter.  A mandatory re-permit inspection shall occur every five years, at which time the continuance of the permit shall be acted upon as allowed or denied.
      (4)   At all times, the name and emergency (24-hour) contact telephone number of the billboard owner shall be permanently and conspicuously affixed, in a weatherproof manner, in a readily readable location on the billboard structure itself to allow emergency personnel to contact said owner if necessary without undue delay in the event of damage to or malfunction or the sign or damage to the surrounding structures.  Failure to conform to this notification requirement will result in revocation of the sign permit.
(Ord. 07-05.  Passed 7-16-08.)