I saw this story in July 20 edition of the Argus Leader:
Intent to limit political campaign displays carries unintended fallout
But the law’s sponsor, Stace Nelson of District 25, said the law was meant to restrict political campaign signs, not directional signs.
HB1085 further restricted an existing law that prohibited signs in public rights of way by adding political campaign advertising to the list of prohibited signage.
The were some intersections in rural Minnehaha county that political signs were just a big mess. There were signs,on and in the fence lines, in the ditches and in the right of way, in one spot someone had their message written on the highway itself in what appeared to be sidewalk chalk. Let’s add to the mix Garage sale signs, signs for an apartment for rent, for the business opportunity of a lifetime, etc. It looked worse that the landfill at times.
Most candidates play by the rules. They ask for permission from the land owner, once permission is granted, a sign goes up along the fence where it can been seen. It is then taken down about a week or so after the election, as it should be. There are some people who will put up a large sign along the road, and because it is in the right of way, Land owner’s permission isn’t needed. In one case the candidate asked to put up a sign and the land owner said ?No.? The sign went up any way, just closer to the road.
A small sign, that is lower to the ground, isn’t so bad, you can see beyond it, however when the larger sign are on five to eight feet posts, it becomes a safety issue. It is one thing to be seen and noticed, something totally different to block the view of traffic.
Some of the church signs, should be moved. Some of them are hard to see around at some intersections.
Great intentions, can we tweak this law a tad more to focus on the trash (temporary signs) along the sides of the road?
They other thing I got form this story:
Bob Meister, county highway superintendent, said his department took down the sign after a neighbor complained about having to mow around it.
Someone didn’t like they had to mow around a sign, so they went and complained to
the sign’s owner, the business listed on the sign, the county highway superintendent, then everyone got dragged in front of the county commission, now we got lawyers looking into how to apply the law.
Right now the sign in question is back up, and Mr. Hahn has agreed to mow around it. Most likely the same result if the land owner went directly to Mr. Hahn said something like ?Mowing around you sign is a real pain. It is your sign, can you help keep the grass cut around it?? The end result would be most likely the same, except for the lawyer who wouldn’t have anything to do.
Have we gotten to the point that we won’t talk to our neighbors any more? If they are doing something that offends us, do we run to the closest lawyer or local official? If their cows are running loose, do we help them put them back or call the police/animal control? We really should learn to talk to and help one another, without the government having to step in.