City ready to issue citations for signs

Published 9:40 am Sunday, June 14, 2015

Bogalusa’s Code Enforcement Officers said the city is about to begin cracking down and writing citations for signs placed in medians.

Code Enforcement Officer Rodney McGehee said political candidacy and commercial signs create a public nuisance.

The city will begin writing citations for violation beginning July 1.

“In times past, I’ve made numerous courtesy calls to people about placing their signs in neutral grounds,” McGehee said. “The truth is, most people are not aware it’s a Criminal Code violation. I think more people are aware of it now, and by getting more publicity on the problem, we hope to assuage the practice of placing signs in the neutral ground.”

A section of the Bogalusa Code states: “The proliferation of commercial and political candidacy signs posted on city rights-of-way and city property has and will create a public nuisance. The unattended signs create traffic hazards and cause additional work on the part of city crews as well as additional expense on the part of the taxpayers of the city. The City Council finds that it is necessary to prohibit such posting of signs on city property.

“The city also finds that nonprofit organizations need to post temporary signs giving directions to and notification of special events being conducted, and it is in the public interest to provide for well regulated exceptions to the ban on posting signs on city property and rights-of-way.”

The Code provides penalties for violations of $100. Each day the sign is posted constitutes a separate violation. Additionally, the city has the right to remove the sign and dispose of it.

Bogalusa Public Works Director James Hall said signs don’t allow grass to be cut n a timely manner.

“When I’m on my tractor cutting grass, I have to get off and remove the signs,” Hall said. “It’s an ordinance that needs to be enforced. With the new administration, we decided it would be a good time to start enforcing this ordinance.”

Mayor Wendy Perrette also said it is a good time for signs to go.

“I can’t stand any kind of sign,” Perrette said. “If it’s not a 5013c, which is a non-profit, they are an eye sore. It’s not the city’s responsibility to pick up signs for an event that has been over for two weeks. It’s just litter to me. The same as a blighted piece of property.”