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Hearing is set for proposed sign ordinance in Waynesboro

May 23, 2008|By KATE S. ALEXANDER

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - A proposed ordinance that would carefully regulate the use of flashing signs in Waynesboro will go to the public in July.

The Waynesboro Borough Council has scheduled a public hearing for 7 p.m. on July 2 to hear testimony on drafts of the ordinance after a local business owner filed an amendment against the proposed regulation on Friday, May 16.

Solicitor Melissa Dively said Ronnie Martin filed the amendment to challenge the validity of the ordinance and be included in the hearing.

Martin, who is also a councilman, excused himself from a meeting Wednesday evening while the council discussed both his amendment and the proposed ordinance.

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Earlier this month, the borough denied Martin's application to add a 32-square-foot electronic sign to his business along South Potomac Street.

The Borough of Waynesboro prohibits electronic signs within municipal limits unless they only display time and temperature.

Electronic signs with changing messages must be allowed somewhere in town or else the borough could end up in court, Dively has warned. A judge likely would abolish the prohibition and allow them anywhere, she said.

Because of this, the borough council has taken steps to develop an ordinance to address electronic signs. An early step in that process was a review by the Waynesboro Planning Commission.

Borough Manager Lloyd Hamberger said the Waynesboro Planning Commission has been working on the ordinance for a long time and on Wednesday, he asked the borough to send the ordinance to hearing with a few more "slight tweaks" suggested by the planning commission.

Dively said the planning commission's recommended tweaks included limiting flashing signs to certain areas, restricting businesses from building flashing signs off of their property, and limiting the signs to a minimum of 15-second intervals.

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