Augusta prepares to enforce new rules on illegal signs

Augusta, Georgia Seal graphic
Augusta, Georgia Seal graphic

AUGUSTA,Ga (WJBF) They just seem to pop out of the ground and onto the side of roads this time of year.

Those little road side signs advertising for tax services.

It can draw a lot of criticism.

“Not put all this advertising out where it will be so ugly, so distracting it’s very unattractive,” said Earlene Crawford after seeing a lot of the signs on Windsor Spring Road

The companies use the signs on the road sides to drum up business, but to the city this isn’t simply small businesses trying to advertise,

“It also is blight, and a lot of people in the community don’t want to see blight, and this is just another opportunity for code enforcement to get out and make these happen,” said Terrence Wynder, Unified Code Enforcement Manager for Augusta

Last year commissioners approved changes to city code to step up enforcement of illegal signs in the right of way,

And with tax season underway code officers will be letting the business owners know of the code change.

“We’ll be going door to door, handing them an envelope, the envelope has the new ordinance of the new fee scheduled that’s been approved by the commission last year,” said Wynder.

For the first violation the business owners get a warning second time it’s up to a 250 dollar fine, no longer will the city be sending  owners a letter telling them their signs are in violation and need to be picked up.

“It’s not going to be difficult, we have everything in line, we talked to the marshal’s office, the Marshal’s office is on board so we’re good to go and we’re ready to rock and roll,” said Wynder.

Code enforcement offices will be visiting about 60 tax businesses starting this week, to get them to sign the new ordinance so they know what’s in place.

The change applies to all signs not just tax signs.

But we talked with two of  these  businesses today one with several signs out wasn’t aware of the code change the other was aware but  said they didn’t want to draw attention to their business.

 

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