Clarence Town Board members are debating what to do about the clutter created by signs posted on public property promoting everything from fundraisers to businesses selling mattresses and snowplowing services.
It’s been an ongoing issue in the town.
Town employees will pick up signs planted in right of ways or on telephone poles.
The signs are tossed in the trash, or their owners retrieve them. Then, more signs pop up.
James Callahan, director of community development, said the law is clear: “If it’s in the public right of way, it’s not allowed.” Town Board members said they are concerned about the clutter the signs create, as well as safety hazards when they impede the view of drivers at an intersection.
But Town Councilman Bernard J. Kolber said he wanted to avoid taking a step that would be “horribly onerous” to schools and nonprofits using signs to promote fundraising events on a short-term basis.
“The difference is that these [nonprofit] groups put the signs up, they’re up for a period of time, and most of the time they go out and clean them up and take them down,” Kolber said. “A lot of the commercial enterprises that come in and put these signs up, they put them up and there’s no intention of ever taking them down. They disappear by attrition.”
Town Councilman Patrick Casilio mentioned a roofing company that had come through late one Sunday night and put up 100 signs. “What gives them the right to do it?” he said.
Town Attorney Lawrence Meckler said any solution for the sign issue would have to apply consistently to nonprofits and businesses. “Whatever we would do for someone who has those signs up, we’d have to do for everyone,” he said.
Also on Wednesday, the Town Board approved new rules for its deer abatement program, which uses hunters to control the deer population.
Among the changes is banning the shooting of deer in the 100-acre Nature Center area. More than 30 deer were shot there last year; Town Board members said they want to ensure safety for people visiting the Nature Center grounds, including schoolchildren.
The Town Board also approved local historic landmark designation for the Stein residence, which was built in 1947 at 10700 Boyd Drive in Clarence Hollow. It becomes the 19th property on the local register, and the third one added to the list this year.