Statement of purpose. The purpose of this section is to regulate temporary signs as defined in § 154.140 of the Zoning Code and similar outdoor advertising in a manner which will permit the identification and/or advertising of a business, product, or event while maintaining the protection of the city’s appearance and the general welfare of the public.
   (A)   Regulation of sign requirements.  All temporary signs shall be subject to the following regulations to be enforced by the Zoning Administrator, unless otherwise provided in this section.  Unless otherwise permitted within this section or within § 154.141 of the Zoning Code, no signage shall be displayed within the city.  All defined terms within the Zoning Code shall also apply to this section.
   (B)   Sign permit procedure.  All proposed temporary signs shall be subject to prior approval by the Zoning Administrator unless otherwise noted within this section.  All applications for approval of proposed signs shall indicate size, type, materials, structural supporting devices, and duration of display.  A scale drawing of the proposed sign and sign location shall be provided with all applications.  If the application is made by the building tenant, the same must have written permission for the proposed sign from the property owner.  Sign approval shall be valid for a display period as indicated on the application. If the approved sign is not installed within that period, a new application must be submitted. Unless otherwise permitted, all temporary signs must be removed by the end of the period for which they were approved.
   (C)   Banners. Unless approved by City Council, each non-residential use shall be permitted to display one banner at a time, and said banner shall meet the following requirements:
      (1)   The banner shall be no larger than 16 square feet in area;
      (2)   The banner shall be located entirely on private property;
      (3)   The banner shall be displayed for no more than three 14-day periods between January 1 and December 31 of any year; and
      (4)   The banner shall not be illuminated.
   (D)   Sandwich boards. Each business shall be permitted to have one sandwich board subject to the following conditions:
      (1)   The sandwich board shall not have an area greater than 6 square feet;
      (2)   The sandwich board may be located within the public right-of-way but shall not be placed in a manner that may obstruct the general flow of pedestrian traffic or in a manner that causes a vision obstruction;
      (3)   The sandwich board shall not be greater than 42 inches in height from grade;
      (4)   The sandwich board shall only be displayed when the business is open; and
      (5)   The sandwich board shall not be illuminated.
   (E)   Construction signs.  Construction signs shall be subject to the following standards:
      (1)   Development sites currently under construction or have a valid site plan shall be permitted to have one sign per street or water frontage;
      (2)   Construction signs shall only be permitted with an approved site plan;
      (3)   Construction signs shall not exceed 32 square feet in area;
      (4)   Construction signs shall not be located in the public right-of-way;
      (5)   Construction signs shall be removed before the final certificate of occupancy is issued; and
      (6)   Construction signs shall not be illuminated.
   (F)   Temporary signs not requiring a permit. The following signs shall be permitted without requiring a permit.
      (1)   Real estate signs. Real estate signs shall be permitted and shall meet the following standards:
         (a)   Only one real estate sign shall be permitted per frontage along a public right-of-way or waterfront;
         (b)   Real estate signs shall not exceed six square feet;
         (c)   Real estate signs shall be removed within 30 days of the sale of a property;
         (d)   Real estate signs shall be located entirely on the same property as the property for sale; and
         (e)   Real estate signs shall not have any illumination.
      (2)   Rental signs. Signage advertising for the rental of a dwelling is permitted and shall meet the following standards:
         (a)   Only one rental sign shall be permitted per rental;
         (b)   Rental signs shall not exceed four square feet in size; and
         (c)   Rental signs shall be surface mounted to the structure or located inside of a window.
      (3)   Garage sale signs.  Signage for garage sales shall be permitted subject to the following standards.
         (a)   Garage sale signs shall be no larger than two square feet;
         (b)   No more than three garage sale signs shall be permitted per sale;
         (c)   Garage sale signs shall not be attached to any pole, tree, sign, or similar feature within the public right-of-way and shall not create a pedestrian obstruction or a traffic vision obstruction;
         (d)   Garage sale signs shall be displayed no sooner than 48 hours before the sale; and
         (e)   Garage sale signs shall be removed within 24 hours of the end of sale.
      (4)   Election signs.  Election signs are permitted and shall meet the following standards:
         (a)   Election signs shall not be larger than four square feet in size;
         (b)   Election signs shall be removed 48 hours after the election of which they were intended;
         (c)   Election signs shall be located entirely on private property; and
         (d)   Election signs shall not be erected or attached to a tree, utility pole, rock, or similar feature.
      (5)   Flags. Official governmental flags may be displayed at a commercial business or residential properties without the issuance of a permit subject to the following standards:
         (a)   Flags shall not exceed 24 square feet;
         (b)   If the flags hang over a sidewalk or other pedestrian walkway, the bottom of the flag shall be no less than seven feet from grade directly below the flag;
         (c)   Any illumination shall not shine into neighboring structures, onto other signs, or have a light source that is visible from the public right-of-way; and
         (d)   Residential properties which do not contain a commercial business may also display flags from an educational institution or sports teams, or other decorative flags, not exceeding 24 square feet.
      (6)   Opinion signs.  Signs displaying a noncommercial message regarding a religious, political, or personal opinion may be displayed without a permit subject to the following:
         (a)   Signs shall not be larger than four square feet;
         (b)   Signs shall only be placed on private property with the permission of the property owner, not in the right-of-way; and
         (c)   Signs shall be no higher than six feet above grade.
   (G)   Further regulations pertaining to all temporary signs.  Unless permitted elsewhere within this section, temporary signs shall meet the following standards:
      (1)   Temporary signs shall not be installed within the public right-of-way;
      (2)   Pennants, feather flag signs, windfeather signs, and portable signs as defined in § 154.140 of the Zoning Ordinance shall be prohibited;
      (3)   Temporary signs shall not create a traffic vision obstruction; and
      (4)   Temporary signs shall not exceed 28 feet in height from grade.
   (H)   Exceptions.  City Council or a designee shall have the authority to waive any of the requirements of this section subject to the following:
      (1)   The sign does not create a traffic vision obstruction;
      (2)   The sign does not create a pedestrian traffic obstruction;
      (3)   The sign (typo) is compatible with the surroundings and is not uniquely out of character for the community; and
      (4)   The sign does not create a situation which could be detrimental to health, safety, or welfare.
   (I)   Administration and enforcement.
      (1)   Administration. The Zoning Administrator shall administer and enforce this section and shall have the right to enter and inspect periodically all properties during the process of the work.  He or she shall inspect the construction at least once upon completion of the work to insure compliance with this section.  A violation of this chapter shall constitute a nuisance per se.
      (2)   Interpretation/appeal.  The Zoning Administrator shall have the authority to render binding interpretations of provisions of this section and shall administer the same.  An aggrieved party may appeal any interpretation/determination made by the Zoning Administrator in writing to the City Council within 21 days of any such determination/interpretation.  City Council may wave the requirements and standards of this section if the proposed sign:
         (a)   Does not create a pedestrian or vehicle traffic obstruction or hazard;
         (b)   Is not permanent in nature;
         (c)   Does not create glare or nuisance to neighboring properties;
         (d)   Is consistent with the character of the city; and
         (e)   Is consistent with the city’s master plan.
      (3)   Revocation of permit.  The Zoning Administrator shall have the authority to revoke any permit issued pursuant to this section if the requirements of the permit and the provisions of this section are being violated, and in such case shall have the power to issue a stop-work order.  An aggrieved party may appeal within 21 days of any such determination/interpretation.
      (4)   Assistance of building inspector or engineer.  The Zoning Administrator may seek the advice and assistance of the City Building Inspector or such licensed engineer as he or she may designate if he or she feels it necessary to assure compliance with this section, and the Building Inspector or licensed engineer shall render such assistance when requested to do so.
      (5)   Stop work orders.  Upon notice from the Zoning Administrator that any use being conducted or that any work or construction is being done contrary to the provisions of this section, such use or work shall cease immediately.  The stop work order shall be in writing and shall be given to the owner of the property involved (as shown on the most recent property tax bill).  Any person who shall continue to work on and/or construct a structure, land or building or use it after having been served with a stop work order, except such work as that person is expressly directed by the city to perform to remove a violation, shall be in violation of this section.
   (J)   Penalties.
      (1)   Any person, firm, corporation, trust, partnership or other legal entity which violates or refuses to comply with any provision of this section shall be responsible for a municipal civil infraction and shall be punished by a civil fine in accordance with § 10.22, Chapter 10 of this code, and shall be liable for payment of the costs of prosecution in an amount of not less than $9 and not more than $500.
      (2)   Each day that a violation continues to exist shall constitute a distinct and separate offense and shall make the violator liable for the imposition of fines for each day.
      (3)   The foregoing penalties shall be in addition to the abatement of the violating condition and injunctive or other relief which may be ordered by the court as prescribed by the laws of the state for the abatement of a public nuisance or the violation of a city ordinance designated as a municipal civil infraction.
(Ord. 101122-1, passed 11-22-2010; Am. Ord. 160808-2, passed 8-8-2016; Am. Ord. 181112-2, passed 11-12-2018)