Gloucester sign ordinance advances to public hearing

by Quinton Sheppard - Posted on May 18, 2011 - 03:13 PM

A number of local business owners and sign makers showed up at the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday night in the colonial courthouse to urge the governing body to look closely at the proposed changes to the sign ordinance. After a nearly two-hour discussion, the board decided on a 4-2 vote to send the proposed changes to public hearing.

Tuesday’s meeting was the first chance supervisors had to sit down with planning commissioners to discuss the changes. County planners, along with staff, have been working on the revisions for several years.

Planning commission chair Keith Belvin urged supervisors to send the proposal to public hearing, rather than back to the commission, which has already toiled over it for many hours. "It may be as many people against LED signs as for," Belvin said. "I think you need to hear from the public."

The LED issue was just one of several points business owners brought up during a public comment period prior to Tuesday night’s discussion. Under the current ordinance, certain LED signs are allowed depending on how frequently the messages rotate, and other factors. However, enforcement of that part of the ordinance is open to interpretation.

After much discussion, planning commissioners decided they did not want LED signs at all in the proposed ordinance, unless they displayed time, temperature or gas prices.