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Bastrop Daily Enterprise - Bastrop, LA
  • Tougher language on banned signs in public right of ways

  • The Morehouse Parish Police Jury will consider a new ordinance in next month’s meeting intended to add local enforcement value to the state prohibition against posting political signs and advertisements in public right of ways.


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  •   The Morehouse Parish Police Jury will consider a new ordinance in next month’s meeting intended to add local enforcement value to the state prohibition against posting political signs and advertisements in public right of ways.
      Juror Jason Crockett said the ordinance, currently under development to be introduced next month, will be modeled after a similar ordinance adopted in Ouachita Parish in 2010. 
      The Ouachita ordinance applies to “all signs, posters or banners, including signs used to identify candidates in political campaigns, which are of a temporary nature.” Such signs cannot be placed on the public property of the Ouachita Parish Police Jury or any public entity created by the jury, on any public right of way – including but not limited to boulevards, medians, “neutral” ground, etc. – or upon any tree, pole, monument or other structure located in a public right of way. Signs cannot be placed “in such a manner as to obscure or otherwise physically interfere” with a traffic sign, or to obstruct a driver’s view of traffic, within 10 feet of the edge of any parish roadway or in any location which would violate any state or federal regulation or law.
      The Ouachita Parish ordinance sets penalties for violations at a fine of $500 for the responsible entity for a commercial activity described on the sign, and a fine up to $50 if the sign remains in the prohibited location for more than five days following a non-commercial (political, charity or residential garage sales) activity on the sign.
      State law already prohibits the posting of political signs or advertisements in public right of ways by designating highway right of ways as litter-free zones, with the definition of litter including the “posting, erecting, or displaying on any surface, pole, or stanchion of temporary signs, handbills, flyers, and notices, including but not limited to political campaign signs.”
      Crockett said that a local ordinance to better enforce state law in Morehouse Parish will assist in beautification efforts.
      In other business during Monday’s regular jury meeting, jurors approved a motion to advertise the former Bastrop Health Unit building with no minimum bid and the right to reject any and all bids. The state health unit moved out of the building at the end of last year, leaving it empty; however, the jury’s advertising for bids since then has not resulted in any offers.

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