The Village Enforcing Political Sign Ordinance

Friday, October 12th 2018, 5:48 pm
By: Aaron Brilbeck

Most people decorate for Halloween or Christmas. For Cathy Cummings of The Village, political season is her favorite time of the year and she decorates her yard with campaign signs of candidates she backs.

But this week, she got a nasty little note from the city; a code violation, because she had too many signs in her yard.

"We're allowed two signs and I had, um, six. So, they took the other ones out and placed them by my door,” said Cummings. “They didn’t throw them away or take them which was awesome. And so now, I have to follow the rules.”

Especially because she helped pass the rules. You see, Cummings is the vice mayor of The Village and voted to pass the ordinance that she admits she violated.

"Full disclosure, so when we voted on this ordinance back in 2016 I voted for it. So really, I'm complaining about myself,” said Cummings.

Cummings says she backed the ordinance hoping to do away with those annoying signs offering to buy homes or sell mattresses.

“What I didn't understand, however, were the unintended consequences of my vote where two years later in political season right in the middle of it I didn't realize it would do that,” said Cummings.

The Village is only handing out warnings, not writing tickets.  But they may take the signs of repeat offenders. 

And there’s some question about whether the ordinance is even constitutional.

"Their intentions are good but unfortunately, this probably runs afoul of the first amendment,” said Cummings.

Cummings continued, "What I want to do by having the political signs in my yard is spread that excitement around the village. Which we have. And it's been fabulous. But I will follow the laws just like everyone else."