HUBBARD TOWNSHIP Trustees to resume enforcing sign-law

Businesses cited will be made aware of the appeals process.
HUBBARD -- Township business owners can again be cited for their signs.
Township trustees have decided to lift a six-month moratorium on enforcing zoning laws regulating signage.
If businessmen are cited, they will be informed of the appeals process.
"We're going to be more customer oriented," said Trustee Fred Hanley.
What happened: The moratorium was imposed on John Pieton, zoning administrator, and Eli Moga, zoning inspector, from enforcing the regulations dealing with outdoor signs.
Hanley explained there has been a prohibition against outdoor signs such as banners, posters, ribbons, streamers or strings of lights, but it hadn't been enforced.
When a business was cited for violating the outdoor sign regulations, about 35 business owners petitioned the township to stop enforcing it because it isn't good for business.
The regulation is intended to enhance the appearance of the community and reduce distractions that may cause traffic accidents.
The zoning commission was asked to look into the issue.
Hanley said the commission decided after a public hearing and research not to change the regulation because other communities have similar sign prohibitions.
Appeals: Trustees agreed with the commission and instituted ways those who are cited can be made aware of the appeals process.
UA verbal or written explanation of their rights to appeal the decision if the recipient believes there is an error in any order, requirement, decision or determination made by the zoning inspector.
UAn explanation of the process to obtain a variance or conditional use permit.
UAll forms required for an appeal, variance or conditional use permit.
UA schedule of fees associated with an appeal, variance or conditional use permit.
"People didn't know what options they had," Hanley said. "A lot of people are unaware they can appeal."
The trustee pointed out the zoning inspector still has to use his discretion when a citation is issued.
However, Hanley said businesses shouldn't see a rash of citations being issued.

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