Political signs OK

City residents are expressing their support for City Council candidates with signs in their yards, but many are in excess of the two allowed by the city Zoning Ordinance.
City Manager Jonathan Smith recommended the city not enforce the ordinance until it can be rewritten, based on consultation with the city attorney.
“There have been many lawsuits in this country in recent years challenging the enforceability of sign ordinances based on content, such as political signs,” Smith said in an email. “In June 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sign ordinances that apply different standards based on the sign content are a violation of the Freedom of Speech First Amendment and are therefore unconstitutional and unenforceable.”

One Response to "Political signs OK"

  1. Cory Johnston   October 11, 2018 at 9:18 am

    This is so Village of Clarkston that the they are not enforcing yet another ordinance while four of the candidates fill yards with their signs in violation of a city ordinance. Is this a sign that certain candidates are in favor of ignoring city ordinances even more than they are already?
    The city manager, city attorney and Planning Commission were told of this constitutional problem back in July when the city manager reminded everyone to follow the political sign ordinance he now says cannot be enforced. This issue also came up several years ago when there was a lengthy debate about lighted OPEN signs, again after that, and ignored.
    To top it off, the city manager’s weekly business communication supports the use of an illegal sandwich board sign on Main Street (several exist in violation of the city’s ordinance) but makes no mention of why this is OK when it is part of the same sign ordinance that is unconstitutional.
    Hypocrisy, thy name is Village.

    Reply

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