Lafayette council to discuss election signs on Thursday
The council will meet at 6:30 p.m. in city hall, 486 Third Street.
It is scheduled to hold a public hearing on sign regulations during election season; however, city staff is asking that the hearing be continued to the September 12 meeting, because City Planner Jim Jacks will be unable to attend the Aug. 8 meeting.
In July, the council made several changes to a proposed election sign ordinance. However, Jacks said in a memo to the council the changes resulted in some issues the council needs to consider – including the ban on regulating sign content, based on the free speech requirements of the Constitution. It is an issue that often trips up cities attempting to regulate the proliferation of election-season political signs. Jacks wrote that the council should be aware that any property owner may elect to put up signs, including non-political commercial signs, which are allowed during election season. In addition, he wrote, the council may want to consider whether it wants to allow an unlimited number of signs, which can be up to 32-square-feet, and whether it wants to limit where they may be placed – such as banning their placement on roofs, trees or sign poles, for example.
The council also is scheduled to review the city’s emergency planning chapter, in the municipal code, and decide whether changes are needed.