“Definitely,” said Wilmington zoning administrator John Fullerton.
Though Wilmington signage regulations are many and vary by zoning district, generally speaking a business is prohibited from using signs to engage in off-premises advertising — an exception being billboard advertising — and from posting signs in public right-of-way, according to the city zoning office.
Unincorporated areas of New Hanover County are governed under similar regulations. Linda Painter, a county zoning code official, said posting any type of sign, including yard signs and banners, usually requires a permit and is restricted to the business’s property.
Though regulated for some factors, posting political yard signs does not require a permit.
If found in violation, both New Hanover County and Wilmington issue a notice, asking the signs be removed or brought into compliance. If the violator fails to comply, New Hanover County can slap first-time offenders with a $100 fine. A second violations can earn a fine of $300, any violations after that rise to $500.
Fullerton cautioned that he wasn’t sure, but estimated that city fines reach upwards of $100 per day in violation.
For more information on city zoning ordinances concerning signs, click here.
Date posted: August 13, 2010
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