By Danielle Dodder
Like a grumpy, sleeping hound, there’s many an old city ordinance better left alone. City code enforcement would happily overlook the occasional sandwich board put out by small business owners hoping to drive customers in, but a recent spate of complaints has resulted in a blanket enforcement of Section 30-527, Prohibited Signs.
Code Compliance Supervisor Liz Carr adds that the intent of the ordinance is a good one, as it was meant to keep an excess of neon and tacky from giving Marco an air that’s more Jersey Shore (the show, not the place,) than upscale beach town.
A few of the prohibited: billboards, roof signs, neon signs, inflatable signs, any sign that emits sound, vapor, smoke or gaseous matter, a description or representation, in whatever form, of nudity, sexual conduct, or sexual excitement (!)
“Captain Baer received a complaint about a sandwich board on Collier Boulevard, which is considered a prohibited sign,” says Carr. When code asked that business owner to remove the sign, the result was a deluge of photos of other island sign offenders. “Everybody’s equal, so it worked out that now we’ve got a list to be acted upon.” Code will be enforcing the sign ordinance island-wide over the coming week.
Business owners can apply for a special event permit and advertise with a banner or right of way sign for 28 days per year, but like all permits, it comes with a fee.
For now, says Carr, “We have to follow up until we’re told otherwise.