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Plan to regular electronic signs in Waynesboro advances

June 19, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- The Waynesboro Borough Council on Wednesday took the first step toward establishing a new local law governing electronic, flashing signs in town and will hold a public hearing July 16 about its plan.

The council has known it needs to establish locations where the signs are allowed, since its legal counsel has said the current, outright prohibition of the signs could be challenged in court.

However, the plan that received early approval Wednesday is not one that matches any of the drafts presented thus far.

Instead, the council now has said it wants to permit the signs on the west side of South Potomac Street in the general commercial district as well as the south side of East Main Street in the same zoning district.

That would encompass the Red Roof Storage business on South Potomac Street, the South Potomac Street Shopping Center, CVS Pharmacy and Waynesboro Mall, council President Craig Newcomer said.

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Newcomer said the council had been looking at two other proposals, one that applied to 15 places in the borough and one that applied to four.

The one with four places, approved by the Waynesboro Planning Commission, would have applied to four limited locations on the outskirts of the borough.

Newcomer said there were concerns that those four places still would leave the borough open to legal challenges since they applied to areas with little to no business activity.

"The court specifically says you have to give businesses opportunity," Councilman C. Harold Mumma said.

The new version of the ordinance "gives us locations where businesses are, not green space," Newcomer said.

The council voted 5-0 to advance the latest plan, with Councilman Ronnie Martin abstaining from the vote. Martin has applied for an electronic sign for one of his businesses.

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